I was frantically trying to clean my house because I was expecting a gaggle of four girlfriends, and three children to arrive for a luncheon. I get an impressive amount of cleaning done when I am focused and task oriented. Otherwise, I’ve given up on keeping my house and yard dust free, clutter free, germ free, and weed free. I have two kids, two dogs, and the beach is walking distance from my house. I have about fifteen trees in my yard. The bugs are insane, including the rampant quarter sized spiders that flourish near the lake and love to gorge on the numerous insects in my yard. My house is never immaculate.
I’ve chosen that lifestyle. If I tried to keep up with all of it my children would have a resentful, and bitter mother that would nag them constantly. Instead, they have a mildly cluttered house, with some dust bunnies, but with a calmer, more fun mom that counts her blessings instead of her clean rooms.
This does not come from a deliberate choice to foster a nurturing environment for my children. Not at all, and quite to the contrary. It comes from the trauma of having my own mother that had to have a cleanly house. She would often resort to beating me when I didn’t move fast enough to clean or to criticize me for my lack of skill and efficiency in cleaning. Because of this early childhood experience with cleaning, I often tell people that cleaning is not a task I enjoy (there are some crazy people that have told me that they do enjoy it very much). In fact, I believe that a level of my personal Dantean hell would be cleaning bathrooms. I despise it. I do it because an uncleanly bathroom is equally distasteful.
So, the thought occurred to me, as I realized that my windowsills and my fireplace mantel would be dusty when my girlfriends arrived, that I hope heaven is dusty. I hope God is so enamored with being with his children that He’ll leave the dust to spend time with His children. All of His children.
Because one day I will have a clean, clutter free house and then I’ll miss my children. I’ll trade dust for relationships any day. I’m pretty sure God would approve, because I am hoping there is some dusty mantels and windowsills in paradise.