A Stock-Photo Mess

A couple days ago I was scrolling through Instagram and came across a photo similar to this one:Laundry pile

A blogger shared a photo of her laundry pile and 1,000+ people “liked” it. They commented things like, “Thanks so much for being real with us!” and “It’s so great to see people being honest about life’s messes.”

I didn’t think too much of it at the time, but I found myself reflecting on that picture throughout the day, and my agitation grew.

Do you ever feel like even other people’s messes are just so…PRETTY…compared to the real ugliness going on in your life?

I’ve been feeling that way lately.

Friends, my life messes are not stock-photo-worthy these days. My life has real, gut-wrenching, ugly stuff and it’s painful.

I know I’m not the only one.

Don’t get me wrong. Hard is hard is hard. One person’s difficult is equally difficult for them, and you can’t compare one life’s grief to another.

It’s just that, if you scroll through what appear to be other people’s insta-perfect lives, you might think, “Wow, if they had any clue what was going on in my family right now, they would freak out.” It’s incredibly important to remember that social media is only somewhat real, and people only post what they want to post. It sure looks real, so it’s hard to keep this perspective.

When people share their behind-the-scenes life messes, it seems like you are really seeing their messiest stuff. You forget sometimes that they are only sharing the messes they want to share. It could be prettied up or just a small glimpse. And that is okay, but you have to remember that it’s not fully real.

Don’t compare someone’s polished, stock-photo mess to your actual, real-life mess.

In other words, there might be more dirty laundry they hid in the back bedroom.

When Your Messes Are Too Ugly to Share

Whatever your mess that is too ugly to share, God has the power to redeem. God knows every part of your story, and He will use it to His glory when you allow Him to work through you.

The more ugly the mess, the more beautiful the story of redemption will be someday. Whatever your personal battle that seems impossible — the addiction, the depression, the lost child, the betrayal, God has an intricate plan of salvation woven together.

He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

Colossians 1:13-14

Will you allow him to redeem your mess and use it to His glory?

Real Life Messes

Thanks to friends from my Large Families Facebook group for sharing some pictures of what REAL laundry piles look like. Feel free to share yours too!

laundry piles

Sara’s laundry pile (me! 5 kids)

Melissa laundry

Melissa’s laundry (4 kids)

Bonnie's laundry

Bonnie’s laundry (7 kids)

Crystal's laundry

Crystal’s laundry (7 kids)

Martha's laundry

Martha’s laundry (4 boys)

Malinda laundry

Malinda’s laundry (9 kids)

Sarah's laundry

Sarah’s laundry (5 kids, 11 year old folds clothes)

Jenna Laundry

Jenna’s laundry

Jenna's socks

Jenna’s laundry — just the socks!

Nicole's laundry

Nicole’s laundry (4 kids)

April laundry

April laundry (6 kids)

Jennifer laundry

Jennifer laundry (10 kids)

When Your Messes are Too Ugly to Share

Other posts you might enjoy:

Ways I Organize a Big Family

This Morning Was Ugly: Parenting Children with Emotional Issues

My Healthy Living Plan