Lent: Day Eleven

It’s Monday and President’s Day, so my wife is off work and home. One of her favorite things is rearranging some aspect of the house (why a house with lots of built-ins doesn’t work well for her). Today she is dealing with one corner of the kitchen where there are two freestanding sets of shelves. Like Schwarzkopf planning Desert Storm, she goes at it with everything she has. She has been at it most of the day and when my daughter came home from work, she enlisted her help to finish. Like the general, she is not against enlisting a coalition of the willing.

Let me tell you about my daughter; she has a special gift. She is without a doubt the best bad situation cleaner I have ever seen, bar none. A dynamo of purpose and focus, you can put her in the average bachelor apartment after several weeks of unconcern and she can make it presentable in two to three hours, so much so that a visit from mom would not be at all embarrassing. White glove cleaning is not her forte’, but turning a disaster into passable acceptance is something she does better than anyone I have ever met.

Fortunately the trash pickup is tomorrow morning. I generally leave three 24 oz. Mountain Dews out on the cans and tomorrow that will hopefully get the guys on the back of the truck through our larger than normal pile of stuff. I don’t put out the drinks so they will treat me better, but it is special to them, at least that is what their comments seem to say. I know I would appreciate little presents like that if I were the one lifting garbage cans from five in the morning to late in the afternoon.

At the beginning of this blog I wrote a post on Small Things in which I talked about how important the little things were: things like my wife starting and my daughter helping to finish the kitchen corner reorganization, and my putting out those sodas every Tuesday morning. In that posting I talked about how important those little things were to those who received them and how we should show greater appreciation to those who fill our life with “little niceties”.

Today I want to emphasize, in the spirit of Lenten insight, how important those small efforts are to those who do them. Jesus told us, “He who is faithful in little is given much” and it is in doing the little things that we demonstrate our faithfulness. You should have seen the searching disappointment on the faces of my garbage men on the Tuesday morning I had thoughtlessly run out of Mountain Dews and was unable to put them out for them. On one hand they had become accustomed to that little perk, but on the other they had come to expect my faithfulness. I don’t think I will allow myself to run out again, as long as I live at this address. I felt like I had let them down in a major way.

May God grant you grace and peace as you go about your day.