The small child before me, the one shaking bright red sprinkles upon everything but her gingerbread man, responds: "When it's this messy, it just means we are working really hard."
I consider the truth of her words. The Christmas disaster all over my kitchen and living room--tissue paper in shreds, manger scenes all discombobulated, and crafts partially completed--I realize the beautiful work of Christmas and the mess we leave in our wake. Our schedules are in chaos; our diets reconfigure to include ridiculous amounts of gooey treats; our family issues bubble up to the surface; our cats have scattered ornaments all over the house. Messy, messy, messy.
A lot of things about Christmas are messy--even Jesus arrives in the filth of a manger in the chaotic way that disorders a whole world back to order.
I'll clean up in 2011. Right now, I'm disordering the place into the kind of Christmas order we need. When it's this messy, something's right.