The Glorious Mess

Doing life differently is the tagline for the group I work with.

We proved that Saturday as we hosted two groups of folks, totaling over a hundred people, for a day of barbecue, sweets and massive water slides.

We do enjoy entertaining. So we go for broke. One weekend every Spring.

We rented two giant water slides. Taller, steeper than any we’ve had before. The thrill of bigger and better never grows old.

The age range went from littles to much older. Some of the younger ones proved themselves to be future adrenaline junkies as they shot down the slides, head first, to land in a shallow pool of water at the bottom.


People moved from the yard to the house and back out again. Laughing, talking.

Dripping large amounts of water. Dragging in dried grass. Dropping food at various locations.


When it was announced that our annual barbecue was on the calendar, my friend Darin mentioned that this was the time when we opened our home for fun and annihilation.

No one understood what he was talking about. Who invites folks to destroy their home?

Upon leaving, several commented on the truth of the statement.

The house was a wreck.

Food, water, grass, mud was everywhere. Upstairs and down.

There was a time when that would have bothered me. We invested in our home to update it because it was, through use, children and pets, a mess. It looked nice. I like to keep it that way.

Having the opportunity to host this event, however, brings focus to what it’s really about.


Providing a place for easy communication and community. A place for the whole family to enjoy. Where folks don’t have to think about making food or fun for their kids. 

People had a great time. I had a great time.

Sure it was messy.

It took some work to clean up.

It’s a house, with no eternal value.

Anything worth doing typically requires effort. There is a cost, consequences, for choices we make.

Life in all its phases, challenges and beauty is messy. The things that matter most cost us the most in time and energy.

And it’s so short-lived.

It took time to prepare for this. Buying, baking, decluttering.

Within twelve hours, it was over.

Joy and happiness in this life are always temporary.

We invest so much in what we’ve got here. All of it’s momentary.

When they came to pick up the water slides, I joked with the guys, as they deflated them, that they were killing fun.

They laughed.

Fun here has a short shelf life.

Jesus offers a joy and hope that lasts.

It does cost. The payment is my willingness to give up what I feel entitled to–my way. My control for His grace.

The rewards?

Peace, joy and hope that don’t end with my last breath. Eternity in the presence of Love. Satisfaction that can’t be equaled on earth.

Messy will be our reality here. It’s the human condition.

The bigger question is where are you investing time and treasure?











8 responses to “The Glorious Mess”

  1. Randy Hepner Avatar
    Randy Hepner

    What a great time Dayle. Thanks for investing in this way year after year after year!


    1. Our pleasure, Bossman. It gets more fun with each year–I think that’s called maturity for me.


  2. Karen Shoemaker Avatar
    Karen Shoemaker

    This sounds like the Dayle I know. You created a memory! You & John have always put people over “stuff” & it’s why you’re loved by so many. You are such an example of what’s really important. Thanks for the reminder!! Your children are fortunate to have you as their mentors!


    1. We’re fortunate to have friends like you. Like minded folks, I’d say. Miss you guys. A ton. Don’t you think it’s time to move now?


  3. Love Love that eternal perspective


    1. Thanks, El. I so appreciate your kind words and encouragement. We’re gonna get together!!!!!


  4. Ella Crockett Avatar
    Ella Crockett

    JR & Dayle you rock!


    1. We’re blessed to have the opportunity to do this, El. Thanks for your encouragement.


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