Daylight creeps through the windowpanes teasing my eyes to wake. Sleep beckons me to say and soak up one more moment here before the business begins. Pushing aside my selfish desires I stretch, tossing the sheets away rising with an unwelcome gush of chilly air.
Willing my feet to touch the cold hardwood floor I am greeted with a crunch- yuck! Focusing my eyes in the bright morning light my irritation rises with the sight of muddy boot prints.
Funny how things look different depending on which side of them you're standing on. Several years ago, my husband's job caused him to rise and leave long before the children and I. It was his "quiet before the storm" and he appreciated the time to himself before the demands of the day weighed him down. However, he had a nasty habit that irked me to no end; walking back through the house after putting on his heavy, muddy work boots.
After spending many days sweeping the trail he had left, I finally asked him what was up. To me, these muddy boot prints were uncaring; a disregard for my attempts to keep the house clean. My attitude toward the boot prints changed drastically when I heard what they looked like from his eyes.
After rising early in the quiet of my home, I walk through the rooms one by one. Brushing my teeth the sink my hands find their way to a fresh hand towel; folded neatly and waiting there for me. In the living room I sit in my favorite chair as my eyes fall upon books and devotionals neatly stacked nearby. In the kitchen my lunch is ready and waiting for me; all I have to do is place it in my box before I go. As I stand near the door: welding cap, keys, lunch box in hand- I stop to lace up my heavy work boots.
Before opening the door and facing the day I turn and head to my room. Quietly I slip to the bedside- face my sleeping wife- I love you- and place a soft kiss on her cheek. Now, I am ready. Walking back through my house I breathe a quiet goodbye to my sleeping kids and head out for a long day at work. Thousands of choices are made in this one simple choice- to first love my wife, and my family.
You see, things look quite different from another's eyes. How selfish I felt; how wrong. Such a simple thing- muddy boot prints; such a deep meaning. The trail of dirt became a sweet and playful thing in our married life. Sweeping them each morning- he loves me- I am reminded that he wouldn't leave the house before saying so.
The days of the muddy boot prints are gone along with the job he had back then. His new employment came with a late shift; and alot of concrete and an indoor weld area. However, now and then, my mind drifts back to those long ago days...days when muddy boot prints were the sweetest sight in the light of morning.