The never ending sacred dance of comforting, wiping, disciplining, loving. Trying to control your temper when you are met with an unexpected mess of toys all over the living room, or when your oldest gives you attitude over a simple request. Struggling to keep up with the demands of household chores and small human beings. Being molded and shaped into the person God wants you to become, even while you are molding and shaping their young minds and hearts…
One exhausting minute at a time.
This is mothering. This is my calling, and my great opportunity to depend on God in continual prayer. The beauty of not knowing what you are doing and knowing you are not qualified for a task is the desperation to stay connected to God who does know. You know the saying: He doesn’t call the equipped, He equips the called. If I appear as though I am doing anything well, I assure you, I am not doing it in my own strength.
Ultimately I am able to display the fruits of the Spirit (joy, patience, gentleness, kindness) when I abide deeply in Him. But when I mess up, as I am inevitably bound to do, that is when I can teach my children Romans 3:23- “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” I can remind them (and myself) that each one of us needs a savior. And then humbly ask for their forgiveness. My children see my shortcomings every single day. They see Mommy lose her cool, get stressed and overwhelmed. They see all the broken, sinful pieces, but if I model the preeminence of God in my life, then my children will see how to live out their faith. When my kids see a living example of God’s grace each day, as well as being taught doctrine, they will know that Christianity is real. This moves them beyond just head knowledge of truth but into relationship with the Author of truth.
It amazes me that God entrusts me with the awesome responsibility of raising children and pointing them to Him. I can’t offer much on my own. I will never have enough time, energy, patience or love for my kids. Too often I operate out of self-reliance, seek self-indulgence, and am motivated by selfishness. Trying harder is not the answer though; surrender is. The Lord meets me in my weakness when I am surrendered to Him and enables me to do something I could never do on my own. Ann Voskamp says it wonderfully, “You cry and wonder if you are insane to try to educate these children, to disciple these little hearts, while laundering, cooking, cleaning, managing a household, and still being a wife, a sister, a daughter, a missionary in your community, and a servant of the faith. And He smiles and says that He walks with you, has grand and glorious purposes, and He understands radical and crazy!” Jesus meets us out on that deep water, moms. When we feel like we are drowning in responsibilities, He reaches out and grabs our hand to keep us from sinking. He will lift our head above the mighty waves- we just have to be willing to show up to do our work for His glory, day after day (after day).