Other People’s Mess …

I had a novel, and certainly unforgettable, experience on Saturday.  I found a soiled adult diaper beside the toilet in my church’s Family Life Center.  It was gross, but I cleaned it up.  Reflecting on this experience showed me how frustrating it can be to clean up a mess you didn’t make.  Imagine how our elected officials feel when asked to reduce a deficit their predecessors created.  Imagine how a new supervisor feels while revising ineffective procedures that were deemed “good ideas” by the previous supervisor.  Think about how you feel when you’re asked to help someone out of a problem you tried to help him or her avoid.  Being Mr. or Ms. “Fix It” isn’t the easiest job to have.

If you’ve ever been asked to clean up a mess you didn’t make, then Jesus can relate.  As Judas and the crowd came to arrest Jesus, Peter (see John 18:10) decided to cut a man’s ear off.  What a mess!  Jesus could have went to His trial and ignored the problem, but He didn’t.  He humbled Himself and repaired the man’s ear.  By His willingness to serve, even when He didn’t have to, Jesus brought glory to the Father.

Jesus reminds us that we can successfully resolve problems we didn’t create.  Maybe you’re frustrated because you always seem to be Mr. or Ms. “Fix It.”  Hang in there.  With God’s help, you can do what you do best!