Proverbs 14:4 Where no oxen are, the manger is clean,
But much profit comes by the strength of the ox.
Some of you may have heard me say that this is one of my favorite Bible verses. Why, you ask? I will tell you.
I like clean floors. A lot. Matter of fact, grit on a hardwood floor is like fingernails on a chalkboard to me. We have all hardwood floors. We also have two children. One of them is a toddler. You do the math. The worst of it is that our dining room is smack-dab in the center of the house, so crumbs, goop and Cheerios get tracked from yin to yang all day long.
When Sofi was a baby and we lived in a tiny apartment (with hardwood floors) I vacuumed every day. Yes, I was obsessed. I freely confess it. Since Judah was born I've gone through some personal therapy and reduce my vacuuming habit to twice a week. And then I just broom sweep the bad spots each day. But one thing I've had a really hard time letting go of is my regular Saturday clean-the-house-from-top-to-bottom, so that all day Sunday I can walk around barefoot on my grit-free floors and be thankful for my lovely children and the marvels of modern inventions like the vacuum.
Yesterday Sofi and I spent the afternoon dusting and cleaning and vacuuming and organizing to prepare for my barefoot Sunday. I swept a quick swipe across the major traffic areas again right before bed. And again this morning on the way out the door to church. My toes tingled in anticipation of the afternoon's barefoot rambles. We had lunch at church. Chili and cornbread.
The kids ate leftover cornbread in the car on the way home.
It's been snowing all night and all morning.
J set Judah down on my beautifully swept and shiny floors and as he walked toward me with his arms out for a hug I lifted my eyes to the heavens and let out a wail of anguish because of the shower of cornbread chunks and puddles of melted snow-prints that followed in his wake. And then, by the grace of God, I scooped him up for a hug muttering this verse over and over and over as I took him to bed and then vacuumed. Again.
Where there are no toddlers, the floor is clean. But much joy comes from the laughter of children.
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