February 3, 2015

Open for 2015 {Week 4}

You know a week has been full when you get to your Tuesday morning writing time and think, Hm, what in the world am I going to say today!

I guess I'll talk about a powder room remodeling project we've had going on.  It started of so simply and was not going to be a big deal, until we encountered difficulty at every turn and found extra work that needed to be done.  And when I say we, I am referring to my husband and father-in-law, because when it came right down to it, I didn't do much beyond design ideas, painting the walls, and helping put in the new floor.  That's where being OPEN comes into play.

Before we got started, I was so excited about this project.  We've lived in our house for a year and a half and have done very little to it.  (God be praised for providing us a house that was livable from day one!)  I got in my head that we should redo the bathroom, paint it purple, make it pretty.  My kind husband went along with the idea and we had fun picking out a new vanity and toilet and so on.

We bought the vanity and it sat in our garage and then basement for months.  Yup, that's life.  There was no way we were going to be able to get to this project without help.  Help with the labor and help with the kids.


My stubborn spirit wanted us to be able to do the project together, just the two of us.  You know, working on the house together to create something new-ish.  I loved that idea.  But for skill and practical reasons - like not even having all the right tools! - it was not going to be an on-our-own project.

Enter, my generous in-laws.

They were so eager to help us finish (and start, hahaha) the powder room, even in the midst of a bunch of their own home projects, as they are preparing a house to sell and a house to move in to, right down our street!

Without their help we would probably have had to work on this little six by four room for four to six months, chipping away at the tasks as time allowed and sitting our children before many electronic babysitters.  Instead, even with all of the hiccups, it's only taken an handful of weekends, there have been extra adults to play with the kids, and we are down to only a couple of detail items.

OPEN to be helped when you feel like you're putting others out and you wanted to do it on your own.

I did get a little taste of working together with my husband when we put in the floor and I really loved that time.  We worked together, helped each other, and had something to show for it at the end!  My heart wanted to be able to do the rest of the bathroom that way, because that was how I had envisioned the whole thing going!  So when my in-laws offered to come wrap things up this past weekend, I was a little bummed because I knew the rest of the project would not be together.  It wasn't even practical; we know nothing about plumbing and the semester is back in session for my husband, so we don't have the time either!

OPEN to be helped when things can't go the way you've dreamed.

I tell this story to highlight that this particularly situation was an OPENNESS stretching exercise.  Circumstances forced me to be OPEN because refusing help would have been, well, stupid!  I'm a proud and idealistic soul, so I am thankful that I had to be OPEN to help with this powder room.  I wish I could say that I welcomed the help with a charitable initial reaction in my heart, rather than feeling disappointed it couldn't go my way.  But that would be a lie.

However, God did transform my pouts to gratitude, and I hope the rock of pride in my heart had a little bit chiseled away in the process, so I can be quick to be OPEN next time.

Time to take action:  Are you stubborn like me and unwilling to accept help, even though you need it, because you don't want to put someone out or don't want to let go of your own idealistic plan?  Can you think of a situation where you could ask for help this week to move ahead in a project or a relationship?

Learn from me, don't be proud and stubborn.  Take the assistance offered or ask for it!

Oh!  This reminds me of a devotional the kids and I were doing a few weeks ago from the Clarkson's 24 Family Ways.  The theme of the week was, We work with a cooperative spirit, freely giving and receiving help.  I guess I wasn't listening!  Sigh.

Here's the memory verse from the week for meditation:

Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work.  If one falls down, his friend can help him up.  But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!  Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

The return for OUR work!
A functional toilet and sing again!!

Thank you, Malcolm and Gladys.

No comments:

Post a Comment