Contradictory Behavior

I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. Romans 7:15

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Jocelyn’s been bit by the cleaning bug lately, but it’s manifesting itself in very unique ways. When she should have been going to bed last night, I found her cleaning the outside of the washer and dryer, as well as the space between and around them. Yet, when I walked into her room, it looked like a bomb went off. Her clean and dirty laundry was everywhere, and every surface was cluttered with something.

This isn’t the first time there’s been a contradiction in her actions. It seems she hyper-focuses on something that’s beyond her realm of responsibility, and completely overlooks that which falls within her domain. I think there’s a whole host of reasons why: avoiding/rebelling against what she feels she’s forced to do, a need to still be perceived as doing the right thing, a sense of satisfaction when she goes above and beyond, etc.

I can’t help but see myself reflected in that mirror.

I’ve been struggling with something recently that has me off kilter and spending my days tackling strange and odd tasks. Thinking more deeply about Jocelyn’s situation has me realizing I think I’m rebelling against God in the very same way. Rather than addressing what I think He’s calling me to do, I’m taking on things that don’t seem to make sense. They still have value, but they’re like cleaning the proverbial washer and dryer as a way of avoiding the clutter in my heart.

I plan on dancing the fine line with Jocelyn – allowing her to work through her issues while still prompting her to complete the chores she’s been assigned to do. I guess I need to do the same: extend myself some grace to work through what I’m struggling with, while still addressing the tasks He’s calling me to do.

Questions for Reflection:

  • Is there anything quirky in my kids’ behavior that points to a phase of struggle? How can I support them through it?
  • Is there anything quirky about my own behavior that points to a phase of struggle? How can I lean into God for support through it?

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