Nine years ago, I found a table in my husband’s family’s awesome collection of furniture that I really liked. It has beautiful spiral legs, that called out to me. It was perfect in my eyes, all except for the speckled oak finish that spoke of years gone by. Sorry, I don’t have a picture of it in its original glory.
With a great vision of what could be, I decided to refinish it. I spent one hot day, sanding away in the garage. Then my project sat for awhile, waiting for me every time I pulled into the garage. My husband finally brought it in and much to my frustration covered it with trash bags so he wouldn’t ruin the unfinished surface. It received a prime spot in the house, creating a everyday reminder of my unfinished project.
Several years later we moved and with much embarrassment I put the half-sanded table back into my husband’s mom’s garage and prayed that no one would find it…ever.
Fast forward – Nine years from the start of the project. We are now living back in Flagstaff, and have been helping her go through the collection in the garage. Earlier this summer, we emptied the collection out of the garage into the driveway and low and behold, much to my dismay, the table made an appearance. The table was taken to the yard sale pile by another family member and with the yard sale a few weeks away, the yard sale pile got placed in the backroom of the house, by the door that leads to the backyard. The table was placed in such a way that I had to maneuver myself and my three chicken nuggets around it daily; once again looking at my unfinished mess. Then week after week, the yard sale was put off for one reason or another and now here we are at the end of summer, needing to have a yard sale. Over and over I have looked at the table, still loving the shape and longing to finish it, but feeling overwhelmed by the massive amount of stuff I need to get done. I choose not to rescue it and sell it as a project to someone else who will love its sexy legs.
THE FINISHING ANOINTING:
A few weeks ago, the Holy Spirit began to talk to me about finishing the last season well so we can move into the new season with a freshness. As I began to ponder this, I began to realize that in the two years we had lived in our current house, I had started so many projects and had yet to complete any of them. YIKES! I still have painting tape up from where I painted a wall 18 months ago, I have corners of white in a freshly painted, six months ago, blue bathroom. I have a wall half-covered in green wall paper and justified it because I left a clean edge.
On a daily basis, I wash loads of laundry which sit on my couch for days to get folded. Only half of my dishes ever get washed at any given time and when I mop, half my house gets mopped before I have to stop and take care of other motherly duties. This is how it goes with every task, every day.
When I see something occurring in the natural realm, the Holy Spirit starts talking to me about what is going on deeper. So in the midst of all of this “unfinishedness” the Holy Spirit began talking to me about the need for a finishing anointing over his people. Many of us have moved into new season or are just about to, yet there is still some unfinished business from the last season.
So I began to pray over my life, my extended family, and church for a Finishing Anointing to come over us. In all of this the Lord has also been exposing within my own heart, some things I need to finish up in order to move into the full blessing of the next season. Some places where I needed to get over hurt feelings and just fully forgive. Other places, where I have allowed fear of rejection and other’s opinions to rule my decisions. There has even been some really hard, humbling phone calls I have had to make. But in all of this, He has walked me through it with grace and love. It has not been easy, but rather messy, hard, and caused things to come out of me that I didn’t know were still there.
I believe we are close to the door of the next season, for which I feel more prepared and ready to fight for the blessings of the next seasons because I have dealt with my unfinished business. I feel like I understand what Joshua and Caleb must of felt like after having walked through the desert for forty years waiting to enter the promise land. When the time finally came to cross over they were ready to fight for the land the Lord had promised not caring how big the giants were, they were going to overcome them and take the full blessing the Lord had given them.
Yes, I am going to overcome. I am going to eat those giants for breakfast, I am going to receive the full blessing the Lord has for me and my family. No more is it going to be stolen from us because of the sin and unfinished business in my life.
Now, I am ready to conquer all the giants in the next season, so maybe I can get somewhere on the table. We finally had our yard sale last weekend. And when one of my delightful family members saw the table she decided that it would be a great fit in her home. So I offered to finish the work I started for her, to be honest, it was mostly out of embarrassment, but also out of love. I knew it was going to be a lot of work. And thankfully she wanted it painted and not stained.
So Friday, I decided was the day to finish it. I started early, sanding and sanding and sanding, with little my boys running all around me. I am not going to lie, by the time I was done, I hated those beautiful spiral legs that first drew me to the table. I wasn’t even sanding all the stuff off, just enough to primer the thing. This took all morning and then much to my frustration, I had to go to the store because I realized the I was completely out of primer. So once again, I had to haul the table back inside, in case of rain, and leave it unfinished.
Time got away from me as I spend the morning doing things a mother needs to do. I finally made it to the store by lunch time to buy primer and some spray paint in Ink blue, a lovely color I thought would be perfect for the piece. I had decided I was going to finish it well that day!
By 3 pm, I had primed the table. I love the color of dark grey primer, I was happy. It dried, I lightly sanded, and started to spray the blue. With 10 minutes to go, it would have its full and final coat. YAY!!!!
I called the dear family member who was the recipient of this beautiful work of art that I was feeling so accomplished with to ask her if she liked the color. Drumroll please…
She wanted it chalk painted…white. HOW DID I MISS THAT?? I missed this important information, somewhere along the way I didn’t get the message. Maybe I had this lovely blue so set in my mind that I didn’t hear her. I don’t know, but I missed it. And I spent the whole morning sanding and priming. I hung up the phone feeling so defeated and frustrated. Not at all her fault, but this never-ending project would take me so much longer to complete.
NOTE TO SELF: Make sure we get correct instructions from God, so we don’t have to do it again or wander in the desert for 40 years.
If you know anything about chalk painting, you know that you don’t have to sand, you don’t have to prime, you simply clean the project and start painting. However you do have to hand paint two coats, then lightly sand and distress and then seal it with wax or polyurethane. I wanted to cry. Not 10 minutes to finish, more like 2 days. Two more stinking days.
So here I was, again, wanting to quit, but I am not a quitter; I am a finisher. I am going to complete all that the Lord sets before me.
I HOPE YOU SEE ALL THE PROPHETIC IN THIS. I sure do. I see how distractions get us off course from what God has called us to. I see the struggle in finishing a season that is hard and a lot of work. I see how when we get set in our own thoughts of how something should be we can miss the direction of the Lord. Do you see that in your own life? Do you need a finishing anointing to finish some things in your life?
Here are my notes from the past three days as I attempted to finish the table:
Friday Night: Currently the table is sitting with one coat of chalk paint. I have another coat to do today. I just noticed I missed an entire section of the table. Arg.
Saturday Morning: I need to get out there this morning and finish the second coat, Ahhh, my youngest chicken nugget just had a massive blowout in his diaper…table will have to wait.
Saturday Noon: The youngest is finally napping, dad has the other two outside, here is my chance. Time to paint. I am about half way through the second coat when I am discovered by the other chicken nuggets who think that painting is fun and they should help. Time to clean up. Thank you Daddy for rescuing me. Second coat is now complete.
Sunday Morning: Sand, distress, lock myself outside, while daddy gets the chicken nuggets ready and feeds them breakfast. Jail Break, chicken nuggets on the loose…
Sunday Mid-day: Everyone wants to go hiking, mom has a mission to put on a coat of polyurethane on the table before we go. I make Mac and cheese, and rush out while they are all distracted with food and dad’s jokes. Ah poop! I am locked outside and I forgot my paintbrush in the house.
Knocking for five minutes, getting frustrated, reminded by the Holy Spirit, it is a process. I go around the house and try again at the other door. Finally, I have everything I need to finish it and I carefully coat it and let it dry.
It is finished. After all the work, and how the table turned out, I am very sad I am not keeping the table. After waiting nine years, I love the way it turned out. It is beautiful and I love the farmhouse style the chalk paint gave it. Mostly, I treasure the sense of accomplishment of finally finishing something, and all the ways the Lord spoke to me through this.
The end, finally.