The neighbourhood where I live and work is undergoing massive construction work right now. The roads have been torn up, the sides of the road excavated for drains and water pipes and everywhere is a huge mess. This morning, my baby and I needed to pick up something from a friend before going to work and school and we were forced to wade through the muddy mess. It was horrible. There are huge cranes and earth moving equipment everywhere; fences have been pulled down and it is difficult for people to drive out of and into their premises. This has been ongoing for several weeks and with the heavy rains of recent, it has not been funny at all. As I waded through the murk I almost wept for my shoes. My 100% leather loafers that I wear to work every day have never had it so bad! I’m not even sure I can get them back to being clean again. The shoe is expensive and very comfortable and it has served me faithfully and well, and now this nasty non-road is ruining it for me!

But wait a minute! What is the end point of all this? Why is the neighbourhood being torn up like this? Why do we have to ‘suffer’ all this mess?

And then it hits me! We need this tearing up in this community, to make it better, to get us better roads, better water supply, drainage, cleaner environment etc.

I tried to imagine what the area would like when all this mess is done. And then I realized that if the mess does not happen first, then we cannot have a beautiful environment. I tried to imagine how I will feel in a few weeks when all this mess is gone. The joy it would be to drive or walk. The beautiful pictures my kids would probably snap on the street corners and the prestige that would come with living in beautiful surroundings! And I think. “Please mess it up all you want so you can build it up again”.

So I begin to look at my life; the mess of examinations so I could get an education.
The mess of pregnancy and the horrible mess of labour so I could have children
The mess of interviews so I could get a job
The agony of staying awake at night so I could write a good book
I could go on and on but you get the picture.

My life has been one huge mess after another, just so I could become the person I am today.
Without a tearing up there can be no rebuilding.
Without a digging, there can be no planting,
without a squeezing and wringing there can be no cleaning.
And definitely without a mess there is no message.

The biggest mess of my life came when I decided to live for Jesus Christ as my Lord and Saviour.
My theology was messed up, my social life was messed up and my outlook on life was thoroughly messed up so the Master could have his way in me.

What mess are you going through right now? Are you crying for your shoes? Bag? Clothes? Are you wading through mud and murk just to make it from one point to another?
Could it be that you need to be messed up so you can be built up?
Could it be that somewhere in the midst of all that mess is a more beautiful you? Have you considered that?

I realized this morning that though my shoes may spoil in the process, a mess is not necessarily a bad thing. In fact a mess looks very appealing right now. So rather than complaining and grumbling, I am rejoicing at the mess. I am saying, “Lord please mess me up so you can fix me up good! Jeremiah 29:11

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