Lesson Learned from Coffee and Counters

I got mad at my husband for this:

The cord trapped a bit of spilled coffee, leaving a sticky residue.

Now, I try to have my act together. In my mind, my house is a model-home. Show-ready. No dirt, dust, toddler footprint smudges on the wall, fingerprint smears on the tv, or three-week-old milk sippy cups hiding under the couch.

In my mind, I am on top of my life.

Then reality.

This is reality:

photo 1

The mail/important papers file is growing, the frisbee and flip flops on the counter from our beach adventure last night definitely don’t belong, and for some reason, two of our hats have made residence here for the last week.

This morning, already a little stressed with the mess, I glared at the coffee spill. My irritation transferred to Justin.

Then I swept my gaze at the piles of stuff on the counter. The hypocrisy of my frustration hit the surface, and I had to speak truth. 

Truth: If Justin had noticed the coffee spilled, he would have cleaned it up.

Truth: The counter is crazy with stuff.

Truth: I’m responsible for 90% of the crazy.

Truth: Berating him for the sticky residue is not loving.

Truth: I could have spilled the coffee myself and not realized it.

Truth: Like the Bible says, I needed to take the plank (this time, coffee residue) out of my own eye and heart (Matthew 7:5).

So many times I want to focus on the small things…the things that don’t really matter. So what if a little coffee spilled and it didn’t get cleaned up right away. As the person in our family who has taken responsibility for the appearance of our home, I have to set the standard.

Plus, honestly, Justin hates messes, and he really would have wiped it up if he had seen it. Getting mad at him was unfair, even if he never knew (until now) that it bothered me. But the thing that really bothers me is how quickly I wanted to cast the blame when I have an even bigger mess to deal with.

Who do I think I am?

The lesson I learned from coffee and countertops is that I still have a ways to go when it comes to thinking I’m above the expectations I set for others. I have to clean the countertop before I expect someone else to wipe up a small spill.

I’ve got a kitchen to clean.

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Bethany Jett

Bethany Jett loves sipping coffee and jamming in her planner while raising three boys with her college sweetheart Justin.

June 4, 2014

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2 Comments

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    This was good Bethany! I too tend to think I am above expectation; this morning I not so lovingly blamed my hubby for something without hearing him out. Daily learning to die…