Tuesday, November 10, 2015

God is good even when your house smells like rotting fish

Today has been one of those days. As I write this, it's only 10 am but it feels more like 5 pm; otherwise known as quittin' time. Because that's where I've been at today; feeling like quitting.

I woke up early, excited to finally have a day off. I had made plans to accomplish a laundry list of tasks since I finally had some freetime. On my agenda was yoga and breakfast with friends, getting my recalled airbag fixed at the nearest Honda dealership, running some errands that I'd been putting off, cleaning the house, and dumping my waterlogged nightstands and searching for a new set (which is a crazy story in and of itself...). I was (or so I thought) totally in control of how my day would turn out. You silly-billy... haven't you read Proverbs 27:1?

While Auston was getting ready for work, I went into the kitchen and toasted him some cinnamon raisin bread that I had bought at our local farmer's market. I heard my husband's half-a-size-too-big boots coming towards me before I heard him ask, "Babe... Why does it smell so bad?"

Don't get me wrong, I had noticed the horrendous fish stench the moment I entered the kitchen... but I had better things to do with my day than worry about fish-smell. "Last night I threw away the bag of old Mahi that was in the fridge. I'm sure the trash just stinks. Can you take it out when you go, Auston?"

"Sure thing." He says. I spread homemade pear butter on my husband's toast and enjoyed the superficial yet fuzzy feeling of pretending to be a Pinterest wife. My nose wouldn't even register the fishy odor at that point. I had too many things to focus on to let a stinky trash bag steal any of my attention. Well, until Auston said, "It's leaking."

Nope. No, no it's not. It can't be leaking. Because if it's leaking then that means that it's





And it was all over my kitchen floor. A gallon of it, in fact. The Ziploc bag filled with 1 lb. of raw Mahi and cups of Mahi-goo had somehow managed to leak all over my tiled kitchen floor. It pooled into goopy puddles under the table and spread out like little rivers in the grout. I didn't know where to start. Seriously... how do you even begin to address goopy, halfway hardened fish goo covering your floor?

If you're Mary Duggins, you address it with an entire roll of paper towels. I must have looked crazy as I frantically sopped up as much of the mess as I could. I was like a fish goo ninja darting back and forth between the paper towels, the floor, and the trash can. I had a very limited stock of cleaning supplies, so the only thing I could think to do was dump half of a bottle of Windex onto the floor and let it sit while I ran to Walmart for candles, air freshener, baking soda, vinegar, and some stress snacks.

As I meandered through the empty aisles, I started mindlessly rattling off things that I was thankful for. "God, thank you for providing me with money to buy these cleaning supplies. Thank you for giving me an apartment with pretty tile instead of linoleum." I kept going, chanting my thanks like an incantation; hallucinating myself devouring a jar of cookie butter.

I made my purchases and drove home in silence, still angrily naming off the blessings that I wasn't at all grateful for at the moment. At home I lugged the plastic bags from my trunk and up the stairs to my apartment. Following the sucky pattern of my day, one of the bags ripped open and out dropped a candle that I had just bought. I picked up the glass shards and chunks of evergreen scented wax and started complaining about how the bagger should have double bagged it, how I should be at yoga, how my day should have been very different, how this was not what I deserved.

That's when God reminded me just how gracious He was being towards me. He gently reminded me that tomorrow I have to wake up at 5:30 and be out the door by 6. If this would have happened tomorrow instead of today, I would have had no time to clean this mess before work. How tomorrow the fire department is doing inspections in every apartment and if this would have happened tomorrow instead of today then they would have seen this mess and probably notified the apartment complex. How we could have incurred a fine for letting raw fish goo stink up the apartment if this had happened tomorrow instead of today. God's timing may not always appear best at first sight, but it always is.

There's nothing like a good slap on the wrist to make my stubborn tail cower between my legs. I usually have to learn (and re-learn) the hard way. This is just another example of how generous and gracious God is towards me even when I spend all morning doing nothing but complaining.

My mind automatically goes to Psalm 115:3 which says, "Our God is in the heavens; he does all that he pleases." and I'm so happy that it's true. It may sound funny, but God is good to me even when my apartment smells like rotting fish.