picture-perfect doesn’t exist

I want to burst that “picture perfect” bubble that we as humans tend to place other humans into. Because the bubble only exists on magazine covers and Pinterest boards. Not in homes where people and rooms are messy.

We decided to do the Passover Seder meal as a family this year. I bought the plate last Easter after reading a post by Ann Voskamp on having a Messianic Seder — love this printable by the way.

(Though let me just say, I’ve personally learned to lay down any and all expectations about how things like this will go in our home. Because behind these four walls, even with lit candles and somber hopes, we’re just…people.)

The scene was gorgeous. I perfectly placed the wine glasses on the lace-covered table. The Seder plate sat in the middle, two candles on each side. I filled the little spaces with the elements. I wrapped the unleavened bread in a red, silk napkin and put it on a silver platter. My duct-taped Bible sat close-by waiting to be opened to the Exodus account of the Passover.

It was gorgeous.
The scene was perfect.

 

seder plate
flickr photo credit


 

Then we added people.

The tablecloth pulled in all directions. My boys suction cupped their small, delicate wine glasses to their faces while my husband read from the Scriptures. One grabbed the tool-box he had brought to the table and began hammering. Then eighteen other things followed that made our Seder highly untraditional. And yet half-way through this fumbling account my daughter chimed in above the off-topic chatter, “Can we do this every year?!”

“Yes baby. We can.”

 

Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.
Deuteronomy 6:4-7

 

I’ll tell you. I’m not interested in “playing church.” Not interested in checking things off the list for the sake of Christianity. Not interested in doing the Passover meal to say we did it. I just love my God and want Him seen in and through me. I want to radically obey, not to receive some ridiculous spiritual status in the eyes of people, but because God’s that good. He’s that good.

He freed an entire people group from bitter slavery. He did that. He heard the cries of His people and answered. He turned tears into dancing. He moved with a strong arm on behalf of His own. He did all those things. And still does. I just want to remember Who it is I’m dealing with here. Because my emotions tempt me to forget at times. Life tempts me to doubt His power and grace. But He’s still the same God.

Our Seder wasn’t picture perfect. And it never will be. (I mean, the youngest wanted to drink from Elijah’s cup because that juice was “goooo-oood.”) But I trust that even in the not-so-perfect moments, as the Picture-Perfect-One spills out through our words and actions, they will see. They too will remember…God.

 
Fill me Lord…

How have you wrestled against the “picture-perfect”?
 

  • Eryn {mamahall}

    “I’ll tell you. I’m not interested in “playing church.” Not interested in checking things off the list for the sake of Christianity. Not interested in doing the Passover meal to say we did it. I just love my God and want Him seen in and through me. I want to radically obey, not to receive some ridiculous spiritual status in the eyes of people, but because God’s that good. He’s that good.” <– ABSOLUTELY! Yes. He's that good. And amen.

    • http://www.larawilliams.org Lara Gibson Williams

      Blessings to you, sweet Eryn.

  • http://www.nourished-motherhood.com/blog Keya @ Nourished Motherhood

    Absolutely STILL struggling with picture perfect. But at this point it is not so much other people’s idea of perfect that has a hold on me…its my OWN rules that I have created that trip me up. Everyday working on letting that go.

    • http://www.larawilliams.org Lara Gibson Williams

      Oh girl, it can be a constant battle. Praying for continued freedom, friend.

  • http://www.raisingyourchildren.net/ Tina Marantette

    Lara,

    Is your bible duct taped too?!?! I couldn’t part with my scribbled up bible, so as pages started falling out (in fact the innards fall out of the cover) A friend gave me brown duct tape to hold it together.

    Thanks again for the post. Your daughter’s comment reminded me of my daughter…anytime I added something during a holiday season to teach and turn the kids attention to Christ, the next year she would say to me if I didn’t do it again, “but it’s TRADITION!!!” I started to have to be careful when I learned of a great new idea to remind my kids of the truths of God. I knew that whatever I started, I would have to do it forevermore. Now that my kids are older and I’ve run out of energy, my daughter will implement the ‘traditions’ that I can’t pull together anymore.

    I also love the suction cup thing. Your description reminds me of my household growing up, and my mother’s gentle patience. My older brothers are identical twins and extremely busy, creative, wild, ambitious, boisterous risk takers. Your post made me smile all the way through. Good job mom, for doing the hard things and going the distance!!! Your children will rise up and call you blessed!

    Love,
    Tina

  • http://annieathome.com Annie | annieathome.com

    Love this so much – the beautiful sacred meeting the reality of life with kids, and you rolling with it. (And I think there was a son of carpenter who might appreciate the hammer at the Passover table, just maybe!) I think we were on the same page today; hooray for pulled tablecloths and messy dining room tables!

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