Serving our household

by DanWolgemuth on October 8, 2010

The past 36 hours have been an absolute blitz of home repair and projects. Our daughter, Alli, and her husband, Chris, just moved into a ranch house in the urban section of Stapleton in Denver. A one-month-old son made settling in that much tougher, and so Mary and I offered to pitch in.

The home, built in the mid-1950s, is as solid as a rock, but with the corresponding challenges. We hit “the list” hard. There were leaking drains to fix, holes to patch, shades to hang, a patio to sweep, a phone line to connect, tables to setup and water temperatures to adjust…

One by one I checked these items off the list. Sore muscles giving way to satisfaction. We slammed it!

When we arrived back home we quickly unloaded the tools and supplies that had served us well over the last couple of days. As I ventured into our bathroom my eye quickly caught sight of the roll of toilet paper that was sitting on the floor beside the toilet. It’s on the floor because the holder that hangs on the wall came unscrewed. It’s really a very simple solution, a little screw driver, repositioning the end cap and placing the rod back in its appropriate location…

Of all the tasks that I had just performed, this would be the easiest, by far. But the reality is that this toilet paper “issue” has been that way for at least two weeks! Yes, I’m red faced as I admit it. At least two weeks!

I had taken care of complicated and difficult and intense issues at Alli’s and Chris’ house, but I consistently rationalized my way out of fixing a very simple problem at home. Mary hasn’t pushed, guests don’t see, and I find the inconvenience minimal.

I couldn’t help but plumb the depths of my ability to justify a lack of action for such a simple and obvious solution. I wondered what Mary must have thought when she realized that on the one hand I was in line to be the “Home Depot – fix-it guy of the day” and at home I had chosen to cast a blind eye toward my own problem. As I said… I’m red faced.

“But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.” ~ 1 Timothy 5:8 (ESV)

I’m not insinuating that I had forgotten my “household,” but I did expose something that is an easy trap to fall into… my standard, my level of expectation, my energy around serving was diminished in my own home.

Service and serving need to germinate and find deep root in our own home before we spread our branches to an outside world. Vivid lesson learned.

BTW – toilet paper holder fixed…

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