Today is Friday.
It's the end to a physically exhausting and difficult week.
It's the end of an amazing first week of school (homeschooling 2nd grade, 6th grade, a Junior, and tot school).
I decided to "break" our new household rules of not eating fast food. (I am trying to avoid it, but not completely psycho over occasionally grabbing it). The kids wanted to get out and celebrate a success. They were wound up and HYPER and I thought my sanity could use a few minutes of everyone strapped in seatbelts and child safety seats! (Just being honest).
While I was in the drive thru, waiting with what seemed like a major crowd on lunch break with the same idea I had....
Gidget was being noisy.
Gidget happens to be the name we gave the family vehicle.
Not sure why we chose that name, but none-the-less, when we paid her off a couple of months ago, she got a new name.
Just us being silly. Just us doing a bit of celebrating in gratitude.
So, I was sitting in line and Gidget was squeaking. It's nothing major, just an annoying belt that needs adjustment whenever my "fix almost anything" husband gets a chance to slow down and do it. It isn't a top priority, just something on the ever growing list.
As I was sitting there, I started thinking about all of the things "wrong" with Gidget. She is rusting (hello IL winters with CONSTANT travel in salt!) in a few places. She's not as clean and shiny as she once was. She has TONS of miles. She's had lots of repairs. She's got a few little dents and dings and scratches (hello boys and bicycles!). The list goes on....
She also has been reliable. She's been around for the long haul. She's been consistent. She's taken a lot of abuse. She's been worn out and overworked. She doesn't always get the care and thanks she deserves.
As I was sitting there, the Holy Spirit was working in my heart again.
Faith---it starts out shiny with lots of possibilities.
Hard times come and you have to make a choice to stick with it or run the other direction. (Make repairs, fix the problems or trade in the vehicle.)
Faith can have its ups and downs. Highs and lows. Sometimes you have to hold onto faith because life can get tough. Really tough. But it is an absolute life-line when you stick with it!
You have to take care of your faith. You have to take care of a vehicle or it doesn't get you to where you need to go. When the shine begins to dull or when the inner mechanisms are needing maintenance, you have to take care of it. With faith, you have to feed it. Feeding your heart with The Word, being in communication with Christ, being involved in serving, being actively involved in spiritual warfare, making choices that keep your heart pure, and repenting from sin----are all just some of the ways to keep the heart of faith maintained.
Some days I feel like poor Gidget sounds and how she looks. Sometimes it's of my own doing. I get caught up in my own fleshly desires or sin. I'm not obedient. I get stained. I get dents and dings. I don't do the required maintenance. My exterior doesn't shine and neither do my mechanics.
Some days, I don't shine because of other things out of my control. Just like poor Gidget, dents come along. Malfunctions happen. Parts wear out. Others don't take care of me. I'm running on an almost empty tank. Some people come crashing into me without regards to looking first. I get rusty because of the circumstances around me out of my control.
Christ comes. He fills up the tank. He can scrub me clean by what he did on the cross. He extends grace.
We can give Gidget a little TLC and she keeps on ticking. She keeps on rolling along. We can shine her up (and oh does that make this Momma HAPPY!!!!!). We can scrub her spots. We can make her smell good. We can remove the junk.
We can even try to camoflauge some of her flaws, though we know they are still there. Just like my own heart, it has scars. It has wounds. But it heals with the right TLC. It heals when forgiveness is extended. It heals when Christ steps in and does the impossible.
Oh Gidget....you taught me so much today!!!!
Maybe you need some extra TLC ASAP....because she sure are a valuable one! ;)