In our house, we have pink jobs and we have blue jobs. Pink jobs belong to Melissa, and blue jobs belong to me. It’s not a very politically correct way to approach chores anymore, but it works for us.
Except when it isn’t fair.
I often complain that the pink jobs are much easier than the blue jobs (they’re not), especially when I’m not in the mood to do whatever it is that has fallen in my lap. Last night was one of those times. I was all ready for bed, watching a YouTube video about camping equipment, fuzzy socks warming my toes, when Melissa walks into the bedroom and asks me if I had covered the faucets.
I had not.
“It’s going to freeze tonight”, she said.
I protested, arguing that it hardly ever really freezes in Round Rock long enough to do any damage to pipes. I checked my weather app, though, and it was already 32 degrees. I let out a sigh and resigned myself to the task that lie ahead. I made a good show of my misery, noting how cold and late it was and that we only have one faucet cover and three faucets (the dog had eaten the other two), but she reassured me by reminding me that we have some old rags and duct tape that work just fine.
So, I rolled out of bed, threw on a sweatshirt, and headed outside. It took me all of five minutes to cover three faucets (about half the time I had spent complaining about it). In no time, I was back in my fuzzy socks in my warm bed.
Have you ever noticed that the thought of doing something we don’t want to do is usually far worse than actually doing it? And sometimes, doing the thing we least want to do can actually be a source of joy? I’ve been thinking today about one of my favorite passages from the book of Romans. It’s found in chapter 5:
3 Not only so, but we[c] also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. (Romans 5:3-5)
This year has brought ample opportunity to build both our character and our hope. It has also brought ample opportunity to wallow in despair and to complain. The same circumstances can bring vastly different results when we set our minds and our hearts in the right place, and we turn our sufferings into occasions for rejoicing.
Is it fun to wrap faucets at 10:00 p.m.? Not really. But, it’s a blessing to have pipes that need to be wrapped, to have water that flows on command, and to have a roll of duct tape that will do the job. When we set our minds on the presence of God, it changes our perspective. It turns our sufferings into joy. I pray that this Advent season is one that reminds you of the presence of God in your life, that it gives you new perspective, and brings you joy.