The house admits that we've been busy. Floors are sprinkled with crumbs. Windows hold smudges. The wash is knee high again. Soccer season started for the little guys and Sam started swim team. Lonny and I spend the evenings shuttling boys to the field, pool, and back again.
Today is Saturday. And our home needs our help.
The little guys empty trash bins. Lonny's scrubbing the walls of our pool (time to close). The big guys have jobs and I begin to think about that cross-over chore - swapping out shorts and T-shirts for jeans and long sleeves. The must-do that makes me half wild.
The workload, the pressing neediness, the weight of it all feels tight around us. But the sun is warm. The breeze is cool. The sky is that long-for shade of blue. And the words are out of my mouth before I can catch them. "Let's jump ship and take a drive. Let's find a park and have some fun. We'll grab something to eat
It doesn't take long for the multitude to agree. But even as we're flying down the road, leaving all that work behind, the heavy feeling stays. I know that the upcoming week looks like. Next weekend is tight, too. Maybe we should have stayed home. The responsible thing would've been to tackle that work.
An hour later we've found a park. Rocky bluffs fringe the Mississippi. The sun is warm our shoulders. We toss a blanket on the ground and break out lunch. Zay giggles when a grasshopper invites himself in. Gabriel shares a joke. We pass food and share laughter and stories. After we've finished, a few of us toss a football. Zay and I stretch out in the end-of-summer rays.
And the worries, the pressure, the to-do list ebbs away. The smudgy windows and dusty tables and needy bathrooms seem far.The overwhelming list of chores?
It's replaced with a list of joy.
I'm joyful to be here. I'm joyful to be with those I love. I'm joyful for the way Lonny talks with Gabe about the nest he's found and for the way Zay is resting beside me, arms tucked behind his head and face tilted toward the sun.
I'm joyful, even that it's the last day of summer.
Because those chores will wait.
And I need to be right here.
This is a day that the Lord has made; I will rejoice and be glad in it. Psalm 118:24