In our home, eggs are a staple. My husband fries them nearly every day to be placed on a homemade egg muffin or makeshift breakfast sandwich. He’s even generous enough to make an egg each for our daughters (and maybe even me upon request). What’s left over? I like to call them “the dregs of eggs.”
The dregs are those scraps that the dog may enjoy once we’re finished with our meal. By that time, it’s just the crispy, greasy, cold remnants of what was once a palatable and enjoyable meal. Alas, our dog isn’t smart enough to care, or perhaps she doesn’t mind the dregs…unlike me.
I like to think that the dregs represent all the muck in my life, too. While I’d prefer to always have that delectable, tasty, fresh meal (otherwise known as “the good life”), I actually end up with the leftovers that no one wants (the dregs). That’s my life, and it stinks.
There, I said it: Life stinks.
No, it’s not all the time, but Lent doesn’t seem like a special occasion for me to offer little sacrifices for a limited period of time anymore. My life has become Lent. My life is the dregs.
I don’t mean to sound woeful. It’s just that nearly every day is filled with opportunities for me to accept the dregs (like my dog does – with delight) or scoff at them, turning up my nose in pride. Most of what’s been handed to me isn’t what I expected or wanted at all. Most of what has become my life is the dregs.
So I have a choice when that plate of scraps is handed to me. I can whine, grouse, and mope (which is what I tend to do) or pause and invoke the Holy Spirit to grant me some extraordinary grace to accept (and maybe like?) what I’ve been given (which rarely happens). I realize that how I react is a choice, though I seldom live that way. It’s as if the dregs – the pits, the doldrums, whatever you want to call it – is just “the way it is.”
I hate how I’ve come to say “It is what it is” all the time. Yes, it’s true, but what is should be an opportunity for grace. The Little Flower once famously said, “Everything is grace.” Why can’t I be like my dog and eagerly await those dregs, never foregoing the hope that there might be something more someday?
Will there be something more? I long for it. It’s almost palpable, even. But waiting too long gets me restless. I want more than the dregs. I want the eggs. Now.
This Lent, I pray that whatever I get – the dregs or the eggs – I might accept them with a grateful heart. My hope is that my interior life might just mirror what I strive to accomplish through this blog and my books. Even if the only thing left inside is the dregs, so be it. May the dregs glorify God just as much as the eggs do.
(Sorry for the weird analogy! It’s the – ahem – artist [?] in me.)
Copyright 2016 Jeannie Ewing, all rights reserved.
Image copyright 2015 “Eggs” by tookapic on Pixabay and edited in Canva by Jeannie Ewing.
About the Author
Jeannie Ewing believes the world ignores and rejects the value of the Cross. She writes about the hidden value of suffering and even discovering joy in the midst of grief. As a disability advocate, Jeannie shares her heart as a mom of two girls with special needs in Navigating Deep Waters and is the author of From Grief to Grace , A Sea Without A Shore , and Waiting with Purpose. Jeannie is a frequent guest on Catholic radio and contributes to several online and print Catholic magazines. She, her husband, and three daughters live in northern Indiana. For more information, please visit her website lovealonecreates.com.