My friend Laura Frankl Pedersen and I were in Jefferson, Iowa, Friday and Saturday doing our Choose Conference at a local church. We drove to Jefferson on Friday afternoon to get ready for the retreat, which was on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. We were concerned as we left on Friday about the 5 to 8 inches of snow that was predicted for our area on Saturday, so we were ready to be flexible.
The retreat was amazing, and attendance was better than expected in spite of the weather. We packed up quickly and were relieved to see it was raining in Jefferson rather than snowing. We anxiously started our trek home, not sure what we were going to encounter, but hoping to make it home sometime before dark.
We drove through nonstop rain and periods of sleet as we watched the temp hover around 25 degrees. For some reason it wasn’t snowing, which was great, but the roads were wet and slushy. The fact that I was driving my husband’s brand new truck that was less than two weeks old made me even more nervous as I watched a thick band of ice form on the mirrors and the front end of his shiny new vehicle. It wasn’t the most pleasant drive of my life, let’s just put it that way.
Considering the travel experiences I’ve had lately, I was sure we would get stuck somewhere between Jefferson and home, but we continued plugging along. We kept waiting for the predicted snow to come as we got closer to home, but instead the sun miraculously came out about 20 miles from home and the roads were almost dry.
We gave each other a high five and breathed a sigh of relief as I dropped Laura off at her house. As we got out of the truck, we saw thick bands of ice on the mirrors and the front end and frozen slush on the sides of the vehicle. John’s brand new shiny truck wasn’t so shiny, it was a total mess. Dirty slush was frozen solid on the sides.
Here’s a picture of it.
Then we noticed something beautiful among the dirt and grime, this beautiful snowflake.
Isn’t it amazing! Here is the snowflake blown up even bigger.
I’ve never seen anything like it. It’s an absolute work of art.
Our lives can feel like this truck sometimes, messy, unattractive, dirty. We can feel like we’re dodging one bullet after another, driving through one storm after another, and wondering if the rain will ever end.
Yet just like He did with this truck, God takes our mess and makes it a masterpiece!
The sin you’re stressed out about?
God can replace your shame with a heart full of humility and His beautiful grace.
The regret and failures you’re holding onto?
God can take those experiences and teach you wisdom.
The pain that cuts you to your core?
God can use that to draw you closer and closer to Him.
You are never too messy for God!
The things in your life that feel the scruffiest, the most broken, the ugliest are the exact things God will use to mold you into exactly who He intended you to be. It’s what makes you YOU. It’s part of the tapestry of experiences that makes you a work of art.
When we bring our mess to our Maker, He makes a masterpiece.
I love the fact that the beautiful snowflake on John’s tire is made out of dirt and slush and sand from the road. Things that are messy and gritty. Things that are annoying. Things that we’d rather not have to deal with.
Yet in the hands of our Creator, these elements come together to make something exquisite.
If you’re feeling like your life is too messy right now, if you’re overwhelmed with regret, if you feel dirty, I encourage you, my friend, take a good, long look at the picture above. See how beautiful the dirty slush can be. Marvel at what God created and remember what God can do with your messy life. Remain in His hands, and let Him transform you into His masterpiece.
And remember, there’s beauty in the mess.
Thank you, Father, that you take our mess and make it into a masterpiece. Do your work in our lives, and turn our junk into something beautiful!
Hugs and love,
Jill Miller is most well known as a Nashville recording artist, singer, songwriter and she is also a certified speaker, coach and teacher with the John Maxwell Team. Jill dedicates her life to ministry through leading worship at women’s events and has touched thousands of women across the country through her relatable sharing. Author of “Grace Finds Wings – A Journey in Song,” Jill shares the stories behind the songs on her CD, “Grace Finds Wings,” and finds ways to touch your heart and help you discover grace in things like infertility, divorce, financial struggles, marital infidelity and loss. Jill recently released her 6th CD, “Twelve, the Freedom Soundtrack,” has opened for the legendary Loretta Lynn and sang the national anthem for President Bush.