Currently, my house is a disaster….meaning completely and totally not cleaned.

When I say that to people, I usually get one of two responses, either “Oh, it can’t be that bad,” or “All of us have disastrous homes.” The problem is, it is that bad, and I’ve never seen anyone else’s home look like this:

If those pictures weren’t bad enough, I’ll go ahead and tell you that less than a week ago a large, red wagon sat in our main entryway. That wagon sat there so definitively out place. Then, get this, it also had the audacity to be full of water.

That’s right: “Hello, visitor to my front door, please won’t you come in and have a seat in our wagon of water.”

For the love.

I’m not sure why that wagon plagues me so deeply. Perhaps it’s the fact that it just sat there in the middle of our busiest location, while we continually stepped over it as if it were normal. Call me type A, a clean freak, borderline OCD….whatever label you want to put on it, it doesn’t matter. The real, hard truth is that I find it difficult to breathe in chaos. It breaks me, and it makes me feel like a failure. My oldest child is almost thirteen years old, so that means I have struggled under the weight of this mental chaos for over a decade.

However, let’s look at this objectively. Here is a list of just some of the things that call my house “home base”:

  • four children
  • two adults
  • a current women’s ministry
  • a future city wide women’s ministry
  • a mom’s group
  • a book manuscript
  • a blog
  • multiple speaking preparations
  • school volunteer work
  • kids’ extracurricular gear
  • an online Bible course
  • kids’ homework
  • one child who believes chaos is the spice of life
  • a small script art business
  • and at the tip of it all a guinea pig

Of course my house is insane, but what is produced out of my home is astounding.

So, why am I so hard on myself? The answer is people. That’s right, I’m hard on myself because of what people might think. I am beyond excited about all that is being launched from within this home, so if I knew with certainty that no one would ever see the inside, then I’d be okay with the state it’s in.

My fear is not chaos; my fear is that if people knew, or worse saw, that my house was a ridiculous mess, then they would believe I am a ridiculous mess.

Galatians 1:10 says, “Am I now trying to win the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.”

For the love.  Now I’m all convicted.

I know that I could let myself get chained by this fear of peoples’ opinions. I could easily spend the rest of my life cleaning. Pleasing others. Relentlessly. But I don’t want to be relentless in my pursuit of a clean house. I want to be relentless in my pursuit of an almighty God.

When I stand before the throne and give an account for my life, I do not want to hand God a clean house. I want to present a life lived in service to others that they might see the face of God. I want to know that He will look on my life and see it spent in love, gratitude, and encouragement to others. I want my whole life to be an offering for the love of a Savior who died to set me free.

So, come on in, step over the water wagon, and have a seat. Let me stick this morning’s pot of coffee in the microwave for you, and we can talk through the issues that matter. At the end of our time, I pray that you will leave my home, knowing that you came here for the love.


Dawn Tiffany
Dawn is a writer, speaker, and leader of Fulfilled Ministries, the women’s ministry at Liberty Christian Fellowship church in Liberty, Mo. The ministry exists to equip women to discover the promises God has for their lives and how to embrace those promises on a daily basis. In addition to her ministry, Dawn is also the mother of four children and a wife of fifteen years.

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