We have a couch that for lack of a better phrase has, ‘seen better days’. My husband bought it the year we got engaged. 7 1/2 years and three lively children later, it has a small seam pop and is probably a shade darker overall. I have been dreaming of a new couch for a few months. This starts out innocent enough. Then before you know it I start disliking the couch, almost abusing it hoping to cut its life even shorter. For instance, my 5 year old likes to hop along it… I know this is bad parenting to allow it, but I allow it for a short period almost every day… Just hoping… Well, it happened. The middle section of the couch just started to wobble uncontrollably. On top of that, just recently, the recliner on one side stopped working. I secretly smiled inside. This couch’s days were numbered! Then, my son lost a favorite coin within the couch. I moved the couch and an “If you Give a Mouse a Cookie” scenario began to unfold.
I moved the couch and when I saw what looked like a feast for said mouse under my couch, I wanted to vacuum. As I was vacuuming, I noticed there was no coin, so I flipped the couch on its face. I saw a bulge of toys stuck in the fabric. I proceeded to work this out of the fabric and out came more food particles (I also realized maybe eating on the couch should be off limits). Well this little rabbit trail continued until I saw a bolt fall to the ground. It then struck me that that little bolt is probably to cause of our wobbly middle section. My husband came home at this point and I explained what was going on and he got right to work replacing the bolt. I then started to study to recliner issue. Within 15 minutes we had a “new” old couch, structurally speaking anyway. (Aesthetically speaking its still had better days, but I feel it unjust to put a new couch through the riggers of my young, sloppy family. More disciplines are to follow).
So I say all this to say that afterwards it felt great to have fixed this couch all by ourselves. Plus, I truly felt God was pleased that we put effort into fixing it as opposed to chucking it and getting a new one. (Which would have brought about another Give-A-Mouse-A-Cookie moment: New Couch=New love seat to go with it= new rug to match new furniture… You get the idea).
Saying no to our flesh is hard.
Saying ‘not now’ when we really would like to say ‘yes’ is almost never easy. But this is discipline at its basic level.
I still have ugly couches. But I chose to see it as a couch that was on its way out, and my husband and I put in a little elbow grease and fixed the things that made it unusable – the important things. Then we let the aesthetic things remain. They give it character and add to its story. Okay maybe I am spiritualizing my couch now, but hey, God speaks in all forms.