Down and Dirty

This month is about growing hope through cultivating patience. Our intentional action, aka. craft, is to plant & grow something.

Getting down and dirty is how it happens.

If you don’t like dirt that’s too bad…this dirt is the stuff of life and we can’t avoid it.

In the pristine world of my imagined life, I wear beautiful dresses, paint, write, and sing to my heart’s content. I take long walks in the woods (yes, in my dress) and along the beach. I never gain weight or get a cold. My husband is enchanted with me. My children adore me. I am good and kind and helpful to all I meet. I succeed in all my endeavors and am admired for my fruitfulness. I face every enemy with utter confidence of victory. I embrace every storm and dance in the rain. Oh, I may get dirty from playing with my children or baking or working in my gorgeous and bountiful garden but there’s no need to get down and dirty.

In the not-so-pristine world of my real life, most of my clothes are from the clearance rack or Goodwill. Sometimes I paint a wall in the house but mostly I just paint my toenails. I write in my journal (to keep my sanity), grocery lists, homeschool papers, and this blog.  I sneak out an occasional poem just for my own amusement.

My singing is loud and proud much to my family’s dismay.

I take short walks along our road, and there’s not a beach in sight.

I have gained weight rather steadily since I turned 40.

I still find myself with a runny, red nose and coughing on my kids who love me wholeheartedly but have seen too much to bow in adoration .My husband is a bighearted man and loves me like no other but the enchantment…let’s just say the clock struck midnight awhile ago.

I do try to be kind and helpful when I can (or can do it with out too much sacrifice on my part) but I stopped trying to be the good girl some time back…it was exhausting.

I have failed more times than I can count and as for fruitfulness…I kill houseplants regularly but I am very good at growing weeds in our vegetable garden.

I am a strong, stubborn woman who frets needlessly over things I can’t control. I sometimes get frustrated and whiny at the frequency and duration of the storms in my life and want hide in the house until the rain is over.

I don’t want to get down and dirty.

Yet here, in the mud, is where it all happens. Even the Lord God, himself, got down and dirty when it came time to make us.

Learning to get down to earth’s level and put our hands in the dirt  is an invaluable tool necessary to successful cultivation.

My pristine self, while beautiful and lovely, just isn’t real or even possible. She is the stuff of fantasy. And though it seems a nice place to live, Fantasyland is lonely and sad because you can’t take anyone else with you. Population: 1.

A life of hope is a life infused with cold, stark reality…as it must be. Hope is light, love, faith, and patience. Those things aren’t needed in Fantasyland. We need hope in the place where we live…Realityville. Population: 3 billion and counting.

Whether you are inside or outside planting, growing and cultivating…or just doing yard work, remember that real life doesn’t happen without the nutrients found in the dirt so don’t be afraid to get down and dirty.

Heidi Mull,

learning to be a dirty girl in a dirty world where hope can light the way to the shower at the end of the day.


4 thoughts on “Down and Dirty

  1. I agree! As Mr. Rogers said, “Hello, neighbor”. Besides it’s only fellow residents who will tell you when you have some dirt on your nose.

  2. Got my dirty on yesterday. Perhaps again, today. And you know, working in the dirt takes one’s mind off things. Thanks for writing what I was thinking.

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