As I sit at the breakfast table the banging, scraping, and falling of debris above me is a bit unnerving really. We knew 4 1/2 years ago this job would have to be done, that the old roof needed to come off and a new one put on. But oh man, that’s expensive and so we put it off as long as we could. We put it off so long that this winter Jenna came running downstairs and said, “There’s water coming through the roof in my room!” Those are not words you want to hear in a rainy climate in winter. We quickly called a company and they came that day to patch the spot that was leaking. It worked, for a while. A couple months later it was leaking again. The pain of paying for a new roof could not be put off any longer.
The crazy thing is that the hardest part of this job for those poor guys re-roofing our house in the 100 degree temps right now is tearing off the old roof. There were three, yes three, layers of roofing on top of the original shingles of our 1923 bungalow. Why? I’m assuming because it was easier to just keep covering up the old stuff as opposed to getting rid of the old and putting new down. Tearing things off and replacing them takes more energy, time and yes money in this case. So who gets to pay years down the line? We do.
So as I’m standing in my kitchen, praying one of those amazing workers doesn’t fall through my roof next to me (because at times it’s terrifyingly loud), I’m thinking to myself, “How ironic it is that this is how all of life works really? We would rather put off something we know has to be done for years. We would rather not put the time or expense into things that are really important because there are more pressing issues at hand (or so it seems).” To repair things really well it takes getting rid of the old, old layers. We have to get to the root of the problem before putting on the new because if we don’t then it just keeps getting worse and in the case of our roof, the leak comes back.
I’ve known these truths and seen it play out in my spiritual life. It’s easy to “do” the right things, add another book to read, add another way to serve in ministry so you’re not really doing your own heart work and just focus on others. It looks good on the outside, for a while. But the real work of our spiritual life is done in the quiet, the stillness of just “being” with God. Really being with Him and being satisfied in knowing Him and working on the heart issues at hand. Then the rest will come and the “doing” part of our life will be a healthy overflow and not an obligation or a “should.” I tell the women I work with all the time, “Do not get should on. It’s not good for anyone.”
This also translates to our health and has become a new passion and ministry for me. Our culture loves to live fast, eat fast, and cover any health problems up with a drug or just ignore it until like our roof, the leak cannot be ignored any longer. Especially as women, we ignore the red lights on the dashboard for too long because it takes time, money, energy and what we think as too much of a sacrifice to make our own health a priority. My health journey has been long and interesting but getting to the root issues there have been incredibly worth it for me personally and my family as well.
Why do I share all this? Because the banging above my head, literally, has been a loud reminder of the truth that getting to the root issue is worth it. Sometimes it feels costly but it’s worth it. We have to tear out the old to make things beautiful and restore it to how it’s supposed to be. My heart is to help others get there whether spiritually, emotionally or physically. It indeed is worth it. I am worth it. You are worth it.