There is a handicap that comes with marrying a man who can fix anything. In most circumstances we try to keep balance in our marriage: we know we can’t both be grumpy at the same time so we take turns; we both love sweets but one of us usually wields self-control so the other is kept in check; and of course, one of us is a saver and one is a spender. But because my husband can generally fix anything, I generally fix nothing.
I am not Mrs. Fix It, but rather Mrs. Wait and See if It Fixes Itself, and you know how often that happens? I have many times put a broken item in a drawer because I don’t want to deal with it and months later, when I stumble upon it again, it’s still broken. It doesn’t heal itself. It’s disappointing.
The current list of broken things we own includes the motor to our jetted tub, our BBQ, several loose door handles, two pictures I can’t hang yet because the backs won’t fit on properly, my old Garmin that probably just needs a new battery, a pair of pants that need hemmed, and a Nalgene water bottle whose lid was melted in the dishwasher. (Updated: I ordered a new lid for it from Amazon. Done and done.)
If I can’t fix it by banging on it, powering it off and on, or gluing it quickly together, I will set it aside and wait. I may order a replacement; I may bring it to my husband’s attention; but I generally will not buckle down and do the work of figuring out how to fix it myself.
I’m not proud of this.
I want things to work effortlessly and last forever and not require assistance from me. I want the tub to miraculously start working when I fill it with water and push the button, though I know it’s broken, though I know it will take more than time to fix. This is a laziness in me, and I am not proud of it.
Hello. I’m Tresta and I despise fixing things.
|“…to know oneself is, above all, to know what one lacks.” ~ Flannery O’Connor|
There is grace in knowing what one lacks. The rich young ruler lacked only one thing, according to Jesus, but that one thing was the barrier to his freedom. I wonder how his life changed after that hard look in the mirror of Jesus’ words? He went away sad; sometimes we stay there in the sadness of a broken thing we have the power, in Jesus, to fix.
Sometimes the brokenness fixes us.
My desire for things to be fixed without my efforts is one part laziness, but another part of it is just the fact that so many things are broken, and I am dependent on them: machines, technology, people. Since I depend on them and not the other way around, they are piled-up expectations of what I need from them while I, myself, am broken and don’t see.
I wait and see if they will be fixed with just waiting, if time alone will heal. (It doesn’t, of course.)
In time, on time, a new heaven and new earth will arrive. One part of fixing in this present time is sincerely waiting, sincerely hoping, sincerely setting aside our Fix-It-ness. We are conflicted in prayer because for some, we pray for actual brokenness, and for others, we ask God to please just fix what’s broken, fix the hurt and heal the fractures that splinter bone and brain and family.
I get weary and set things aside. Because time is for marking grace, in time I come back and see that indeed, some things are fixed without my fixing and fretting and even in my forgetfulness to pray, God is using brokenness to fix things. It’s not just time that heals; it’s people doing the hard work God puts before them, and it’s God taking care of the hard things His people put before Him.
You have broken stuff going on. You have shoved things aside in exasperation and occasionally you might pull them up again, push the buttons, bang them around a bit to see if they are working right. Take heart, and take this as sincere encouragement:
Now hear me, Rabadash,” said Aslan. “Justice shall be mixed with mercy. You shall not always be an Ass.”
We will not always be broken.