Thoughts at the Kitchen Sink

Thoughts at the Kitchen Sink: Only by the Grace of God


By Crystal Storms

“If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 4:11b (NIV)

Have you ever looked back at an accomplishment and thought only by the grace of God did I do that?

Our new home needed a fresh coat of paint. And even though I’d only painted a couple of times before, I thought I can do that myself.

So the week before we moved, every morning I rode my bike to our new home to paint. But after a few days of this, my body began protesting with tight muscles and headaches.

And by the third day the headache hit before the day even began. So I took some pain medicine with breakfast and hoped for the best.

By lunch the pain vanished and so did my energy. The drop cloth where my dog lay sleeping looked like a giant pillow rather than a sheet thrown over the tile. And I envisioned curling up next to her and sleeping the afternoon away.

But the day’s agenda was to paint the two closets so we could begin moving our clothes. I pressed through the weariness, asked God for strength, and got back to work.

Painting the closet interiors looked impossible. I didn’t see how I could reach the top and get the little spots between the wire shelves. But I determined to do the best I could.

And stroke by stroke, section by section, wall by wall I had two freshly painted closets by the end of the day.

The long days took their toll on my husband too. But his search for some headache relief came up empty.

I told him to keep looking because it was there in the medicine cabinet. I’d taken some that morning.

But all he could find was some nighttime pain reliever. And when he showed me the bottle, my strong desire for a nap earlier suddenly became clear.

Painting our new home was an act of love. But in that moment I knew I accomplished it only by the grace of God.

Now the walls in my home serve as a reminder. When I look at them, I see what I can do, not on my own, but through Christ alone.

My walls serve as a reminder of what I can do, not on my own, but through Christ alone.

Purposeful Thought: “I am more than a conqueror through Christ Jesus” Romans 8:37.


Crystal Storms is a writer and heart encourager who loves Jesus and seeks to glorify God in all she does. Married to her best friend for over 21 years, Tim and Crystal live in Florida with their sweet dog Minnie. You can connect with Crystal at where you’ll find encouragement for your heart as we seek God’s heart.



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11 thoughts on “Thoughts at the Kitchen Sink: Only by the Grace of God

  1. Oh my goodness, Crystal. Glad God’s strength was more potent than the sleepy medicine. 🙂 Bet those closets look great. 🙂 We hate spending the extra money, so we’ve always done our own painting. It is exhausting though, isn’t it?! So happy for your new home, hope you’re settling in well. xoxo

    1. Me too, Brenda! Because of His grace the walls look beautiful!
      I did get some definition in my painting arm. It was hard to do it ourselves but worth it.
      ((hugs)) to you, friend. : )

  2. I’m not a fan of painting, myself, Crystal, so I can’t even imagine trying to persevere through the effects of a nighttime pain reliever! Whenever you look at your beautifully painted closets you’ll have a reminder of God’s ability to carry you!

  3. Kitchen sink was a really great article to read, we can all identify our selves in these articles. It is so true what Crystal said and the bible reads we are more than a conqueror through Jesus Christ. She used this verse about painting her walls. If we set our mind to do something and not put it off, we can do anything through Christ at all times, not be lazy or have an idle mind.

  4. You’re brave! Look at you – painting away with a can-do attitude. But even more so, with a God-can follow-through. Love the story, Crystal. This sounds like a Guideposts story. 😉

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