Signs of Life

I walked through the house and no bed was made. The rug that I vacuumed just yesterday now possesses a mixture of dust and dog hair once again. The tile floor near the front door greets us with remnants of outside. Tools lay beside the fire place. A blanket rests on the chair. Leftover tacos array the dining room table and a line of trash bags filled to the brim quietly await their new destination.

Soccer shin pads, hair products and a used rag decorate the living room table. The family room has an array of items everywhere. A laundry basket full of clean clothes beg to return to their home. A half empty cup from a local restaurant sits on the desk and the carpet is, well let’s just say that its not spotless!

There is noise coming from on the bedrooms, “Keep it up and I’ll shave your eyebrows in your sleep,” I hear baby brother taunting his big brother. Big sister sits in the middle of the messy family room and coaches her younger brother on a paper that is due in a few days.

The little girls take turns organizing the pantry as they take turns playing with the baby we are babysitting. Dad is on the telephone encouraging one of our pastors and I’m just feeling fortunate.

Life goes on here.

The younger brother is desperate for more help! It’s Friday and his paper is due soon. Big sister has to pack for a job interview  that’s three hours away.

Once the older brother is done putting his “taunter” in his place, he sits on the sofa to help his younger brother.

The girls are done with the pantry and find every excuse as to why they don’t need to sit at the school table! The “taunter” takes the baby from them and moves on the throw punches at dad in the air while he is on the telephone. Dad gives him a look to say, “I can’t play now.” The “taunter” moves on.

Life goes on here.

The girls get the baby back and ssshh him to sleep. Older brother wants to shower, but the younger won’t let him leave. His paper is due soon, plus today is Friday and he wants to have fun over the weekend! He needs this done now!

Life goes on here.

There’s a dance recital tonight. I need to take the girls dress shopping. I should be thinking of my next step. My next activity. The thing that comes after this.

But I’m swallowed into this space. I’m grounded here. I’m lost in this moment. I’m locked in the realm of right now. I just want to hold on to now.

This disordered house is just a sign of the loving lives that live here. We value the significance of each moment spent together way more than a clean house. I’m not making excuses for our sloppiness. The house really is a mess today, but right now; at this moment, I don’t care.

The Dominguez clan, this corner of the universe, this moment, our togetherness right now make way more sense to me than my next step.

Life goes on here.

Brother and sister helping the younger brother to succeed means more than having a clean carpet at this moment. The “taunter” feeling free to live up to his name carries more weight than the messy trash. Dad pouring out life brings more value than having a clean floor.

That cluttered family room is a true sign of life. It tells us that life goes on here. Lives are alive and living. Lives that are consistently making dents into the dreams that possess each heart here -live here. Lives that won’t stop living. What sense does it make to be alive and to not live?

These lives, the Dominguez lives, are sometimes messy. No matter how well we clean up on the outside, ever so often we find mayhem on the inside. Like the blue rug on my living room floor, we sometimes find ourselves dirty right after a good cleaning!

Such is life. If we would all choose the road of brutal truth, everyone would agree. We are all sinners saved by grace. Joint heirs with Christ simply because of His sacrifice, not because of our ability to stay clean. We couldn’t do it on our own. He had to come to save us.

I’ve come to appreciate the jumble. Messy people and messy homes are both signs of life. I’ve learned to stop and to embrace each moment, even those that are full of debris. If there were never any disarrayed moments in life, we would never see the glory of our Father. We would never know of His amazing power if chaos never existed.

The wonderful reality is that Christ found me in my wreckage. I was really dirty. Sin had become my friend, yet in that place I was discovered. I was loved. I was accepted. He embraced me in my hodgepodge of ugliness. I found freedom in the midst of my messy heart through God’s love.

This disarrayed view within my home today gives me hope. It tells me that we are alive. It tells me that we are awake. It tells me that life continues. Out of this messy heap arises a hopeful bunch of lovers ready to show up everyday all of the time.

I’ll get to the next step. I’ll clean up in a few. But right now, I just want to embrace this expanse in time. I cherish the blemished carpet simply because of those who made it that way.






  1. Beautiful words from a beautiful heart. Love this: “Lives that are consistently making dents into the dreams that possess each heart here -live here.”

    Thank you for the reminder to soak it all in. Love you!


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