Once upon a time there was a magnificent new dwelling built for a family of five: a Mom, a Dad, and three young children. The house, in a way, was also a family: a family of rooms. Of course, there were all the usual rooms – a living room, a kitchen, a dining room, bedrooms, bathrooms, and a garage.
And just as each person of the family of people was unique, each with their own personality – so was each room of the house. The dining room, for example, was cozy and warm; the morning sun filtered through its latticework windows helped the family feel cheery and bright as they began each day. And the living room with its tall, vaulted ceiling offered a grand and safe gathering place for both family and friends.
Each room was proud of the unique contributions it made in providing a comfortable and safe home for its family. But one room was particularly proud: the garage. And its pride was not false, for it was an exceptionally fine garage, with finished walls, two car-sized doors and lots of room.
Years went by. The children grew. The family was happy. And every room of the well-tended home glowed with pride, each knowing that it contributed in a very special way to the happiness of its family. Every room, that is, except for one: the garage.
Though the garage had begun life as a very proud room, the years had not been kind. And its family – the family that the garage loved so dearly – had been cruel. The cruelty had not been intentional; all in the family were good souls, who would never intentionally harm a helpless room. But though unintentional, the family’s treatment of the garage had been very cruel indeed.
All the other rooms of the house had been pampered through the years, kept tidy and orderly, the glory of their youth undiminished. But with each passing year, the poor garage had become ever more messy as the family filled its once spacious interior with clutter and junk. Boxes stacked high; yard tools piled hither and yon; discarded toys and worn-out household utensils strewn with careless abandon.
The garage could only suffer in silent despair. And it was sad not only for itself, but for its family as well. For the garage knew in its heart that it could make its family happier. After all, it was created to be so much more than just a storage room. But alas, it seemed that its fate was sealed.
Then one day a truck from TLC Garage Works pulled up in the garage’s driveway. Moments later, a small work-crew walked into the garage, along with the Father of the family. “We want to reclaim our garage,” said the Father to one of the workmen. “That’s why I called you for a garage cleanup. We finally realized how much we were missing by just using our fine garage as a place to store junk. After you’re through, we’re going to start using our garage as a family room.”
Oh, how the garage rejoiced! Once again, it would take its rightful place as a proud member of the family of rooms. In its joy and gratitude, it resolved to do all it could to serve the family that it loved so much. And indeed, both garage and family lived happily ever after.