As a parent, your life becomes much more exciting. Tickling becomes a source of constant entertainment, crazily dancing is the norm, drawing outside the lines is totally okay, and I’ve got a black belt in kissing boo-boo’s. Being a dad is super-awesome. No, seriously.
But as a parent, you deal with stuff that isn’t fun. Like when you kid gets sick and projectile vomit all over a couch, or you take them into a McDonald’s restroom, or green slime is oozing from their little noses… or the incessant whining at 3AM. It’s a sleepless endeavor that reminds you of your frailty and just how much sleep is well, necessary.
Then there is the part of being a parent when you’re blamed for stuff you didn’t do. I didn’t bring the snack, or I “forgot” the Muppets CD which we’ve listened to 1 million times. But, this also happened the other day during a conversation with Ruth.
Daddy, you made a mess.
Excuse me… I made a mess you say? I’m sorry, but I’m not the one who pooped their pants. YOU made this mess young lady. Yet, here I was, with what seemed like the 100th time I’m cleaning her bottom, wiping away the mess (upward motion works the best BTW) and getting her new panties. I mean, #1 in the toilet – NO problem. #2 in the toilet – MAJOR anxiety. We’re working on it, but she’ll probably have this figured out by Jr. High.
But her making a mess really isn’t my point. My point is who she blamed. She blamed me. To her, I had made a mess. To her, I had somehow caused all of this. In essence, she was shifting the blame of the mess onto the nearest person possible, and it just so happened to be me. Sound familiar? It’s exactly what Adam and Eve did in the garden, isn’t it? They were caught in their sin and thought their best exit strategy was to point the finger in a different direction other than themselves. Adam accused Eve, Eve accused the serpent, and well, they three looked up at God incredulously.
But, just like Adam, Eve, and Ruth, I’ve done the same. I’ve, at times, accused God. It’s found in our questions to God when circumstances become difficult.
Why did this happen… to me?
I’ve been faithful to you all these years, why did you allow this?
Haven’t I prayed, read my Bible, taught a class, etc?
Am I not owed something for all my good works?!
But this is just our entitled hearts yelling out to the God who did not make the mess. Often, when life doesn’t go as “planned” we will look around to see who we might blame… and the sword generally will fall on God. It’s just as dangerous a trap as thinking that God rewards good behavior. But that’s just not how life works, according to Jesus (see Matthew 5:45).
Yet, while I was cleaning up Ruth, it became a picture to me of Jesus. In fact, it’s what is so beautiful about Jesus. No, He didn’t make a mess in this world, we certainly did – Yet He sure did come to clean it all up. Be thankful for that. As I washed Ruth, I thought of my Savior, who washed me too.