Love the 'mud.

Last Update: February 09, 2015

A friend told me this story years ago. When his two sons were very young. 5 or 6 years old and only a year apart. They were just starting to play 'T' ball.

It had rained recently and the ground was kind of soggy. He decided to proceed with plans to go to practice anyway. The kids were so excited, and he didn't want to let them down.

They all had great fun, but when it was time the boys were ready to go. They ran ahead and piled into the back seat and dutifully buckled up. During the ride home, they chatted cheerfully about ball practice.

When Dad stopped in the driveway his two little 'bundles of boyish energy' blasted into the house. When he got out of the car and prepared to go in he glanced into the back seat. He was horrified.

Everyone knew how neat and orderly (prior military) he is. He was especially careful with his beloved car. He made sure it is in top condition and immaculate in and out.

The horror that he saw in the backseat? MUD! There was mud everywhere. On the seats, on the floor, and the doors, even on the inside of the windows.

He muttered angrily under his breath the whole time he was cleaning up the mess. He was imagining; deciding what 'punishment' will be meted out. This was unacceptable behavior, to make such a mess. He had recently had it 'detailed' in preparation for going on a road trip the next day.

When he opened the garage door to go in he was greeted with yet ANOTHER unacceptable condition wrought by those 'little rascals' Their bikes and yard toys were cluttering up the otherwise orderly garage. His temper boiled. As he began to pick up one of the bikes to put it where it's SUPPOSED to be parked, he had an epiphany.

If this garage WASN'T cluttered, and if there had been no mud in his precious car and none of the other things they irritated him with as little boys do. He wouldn't have these two wonderful children to take to games, sing with, and go camping and fishing with. In a word, 'empty' would describe that life.

He said he learned to 'love the mud' that day. He silently praised God gratefully for all the blessings, he so often neglected to recognize.

As a young father myself, this story had a profound effect on me ever since. It affected not only my attitude about the seven children that we raised, but many things.

Whenever I get irritated about an unavoidable adversity, I remember 'love the mud'. If I didn't have this property to take care of, make repairs, mow the yard etc. I like housework the least. I wouldn't have this nice house to live in. Or I get frustrated when something isn't quite right with my website. I've learned (not always easy) to remember the many blessings God has bestowed upon me and my family. Things don't seem quite so grim. I turn to pray for hungry people living under bridges.

Now, when people ask me "How you doing"? I often respond with, "Better than I deserve" because I'm humbled by the incredible gift that is this life. Jackson

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NakedGypsy Premium
So very true...reminds me of the days of raising my son...so much mud!! I have been truly blessed. Thanks for sharing
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freedom1207 Premium
Beautiful...
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FThorndyke Premium
Awesome post, that's a good story worthy of mention. I think it just when viral ! Cheers . ... :)
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Christabelle Premium
What a wonderful blog! For dad it is the mud to look past for a lot of moms it is all the diapers in the young years to look past,lol, to embrace the beauty of the gift of those precious children! That is what I would say to those who would make comments when I had two in diapers, "If I didn't have the diapers I wouldn't have these beautiful children!" :)
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Johan1776 Premium
They are awesome 'gifts from God.' I don't understand how anyone could abandon or hurt them. My hats off to Moms, I don't know how they can prevail over such a burden,
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Christabelle Premium
I don't understand either! We just had a horrible incident here in Ohio with an eleven year old killing a 2 month old baby, it was even on the national news, and it has left the people who were at the site in counseling. I understand the enemy better then most, but I don't understand how people can choose to let their hearts be so hardened.
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Johan1776 Premium
When I was a county officer I worked in Juvenile Justice for a while, and it was really heartbreaking. The kids (11-17 years) were all involved in serious crimes. Most of them, males and females, did not have parents.

The fathers were conspicuously missing, and the moms mostly alone and helpless. When you got to know them, they were just typical kids. I had 15 and 16-year-old kids tell me that I was the first man (that they could remember) that noticed and rewarded them for doing something right. We had a military academy program, teaching them leadership and self-discipline that they thrived in.

There was no punishment, just positive reinforcement. Some headed for prison later, but most went on to productive lives. I dealt with 100's of them, and once in a while someone will walk up to me at random and say "Aren't you Sergeant Major Jackson?" and "Thanks for saving my life."

I still tear up when I think about it. It's just one of the countless blessings God has bestowed on me. I believe it was one of the reasons he kept me alive through all those battles and dangerous adventures.

All the way grateful here. ;-) J
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Christabelle Premium
That is wonderful! I do know that one of the greatest issues for the youth today is the lack of a healthy father relationship. That means so much more then most people begin to comprehend. I am so glad you have been able to offer that to these hurting youths. I did not have that but was finally able to find that in God the Father as a young adult which brought great healing. God's continued blessings to you!:)
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Johan1776 Premium
You too, Angel. ;-)
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Christabelle Premium
Thank you!:)
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JewelCarol Premium
Yes, "better than I deserve", Johann. Love yr blog post and story, thank you, we need to be grateful at all times. :)
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Johan1776 Premium
Not always easy, but always good. ;-)
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DoubleTap Premium
Yuppers J.D.... tis always a good thing to give credit where credit is due. Truly... all glory to Him!
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Johan1776 Premium
0:-)
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sSchovajsa Premium
Johann1796, I needed this story more than you know. I needed to work on this website the weekend, but my sweet granddaughter came to visit. We made cookies that were horrible and fried bananas that were worse, plus the mess. I adore her though and she is worth much more than any website. God has blessed us richly. Thank you!
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Johan1776 Premium
Worth more than having a 'clean' kitchen, I would venture. ;-)
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sSchovajsa Premium
I plan to stay out of the kitchen for a while, my pressure cooker blew today with black eyed peas. The gauge and water from peas went all over the kitchen. However, I thank God, I did not get burned. All the grand kids are worth more than a clean kitchen. Mine is clean now!:-)
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Johan1776 Premium
Wow, isn't God a hoot? It is like 'Forrest Gump's box of chocolates' sometimes right. Thank God no one got hurt. Kitchen science is dangerous business. :0] Be safe. J
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sSchovajsa Premium
Johann 1796, God is a hoot! Thank you, didn't cook tonight maybe tomorrow???
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Johan1776 Premium
What are you going to cook?
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Judy-B Premium
Enjoyed reading your post. Thanks for sharing. :)
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Johan1776 Premium
I am honored that you enjoyed it. Thanks, Miss Judy. J
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kennnyb Premium
Thank you for the analogy
Ken
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Johan1776 Premium
Thanks, Ken, I am glad you liked it. Bon Soir, Mon Ami. ;-) J
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Sui_generis Premium
I really like the perspective of this story. Thanks for the insight and humbling.
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Johan1776 Premium
Merci, Cher, You came to the right place to pursue your endeavors. I wish you Joy, Confidence and Great Fortune on the 'Journey.' Johann.
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Sui_generis Premium
BTW, I'm enjoying your newsletter and website.
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eeohome Premium
Love this!!! My husband and I do not have children (age and health issues). But you related this to other areas in life.
You helped me do some thinking.
Best wishes.
Edie
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Johan1776 Premium
Thanks, Edie, Bon chance, Mon Ami. ;-)
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AndyJ Premium
Enjoyed the read J :).
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Johan1776 Premium
Thanks, Andy, glad you liked it. ;-)
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booklover2 Premium
Amen Johann,these are the articles you should put in your blog! Very well said and interesting too and that's what keeps your readers coming back!
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Johan1776 Premium
Thanks, Miss Juli, I am grateful you spent the time to read it. ;-)
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booklover2 Premium
no problem, and I like your writing style, sounds like it comes from the heart and also like your talking directly to me when I read it, I think that goes a long way!
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skyline2178 Premium
Incredible story. Thanks for sharing. Best you the best in your business.
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Johan1776 Premium
Thanks, Elias, Joy, Confidence, and Great Fortune to you.
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skyline2178 Premium
Hi Johann 1796,
You're welcome. Appreciate much too. Have a great day.
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Marith Premium
That was a beautiful story Johann, thanks for sharing
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Johan1776 Premium
Thank you, Miss Marith. I never got to Spain (yet) but I love Europe Thanks for the cheerful note. J.
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floridajf Premium
Very humble and heart warming story you got there. I think it is really touching. Nice to see that you treat your kids like a true father should.
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Johan1776 Premium
Thanks, Florida it is (as you know) an awesome joy to be a parent. Via con Dios, Chula ;-).
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floridajf Premium
You're spanish is a little rusty, but thanks. :)
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