Wow. It’s been a long time, and I feel like the Lord has been teaching me so much, but I have had a major case of writer’s block… which I’ve perpetuated by not writing! It’s easiest when I have blockage to tell stories, so that’s what I will do.
When I first had kids almost three and half years ago, it was a HUGE adjustment for me. I pretty much went from doing whatever I want whenever I want, to being a mom, and quite honestly, I had never felt so drained from any other responsibility ever. I don’t know exactly why, but learning a) to be surrounded by people all the time b) to be serving someone else all the time, and c) to not quit, was really, really difficult for me. (And that was regardless of “mom” time that I most definitely took and regardless of how helpful Matt was (is).)
It hasn’t been till the last year or so that I’ve really started to accept and roll with some of the challenges of being a parent, like not getting the weekends off, and having to put food in their mouths, and not being able to run away whenever I feel like it. 🙂 I have begun to learn how to trust God for my strength and sanity in each moment…
Insert a trip I took with women from my church to London, kid free, for a week. This trip was amazing. We were given the opportunity to go share the gospel with people who had truly NEVER heard about Jesus. It wasn’t an easy breezy trip, by any means, but as far as gifting and “categories of things that generally excite me,” this was right up my ally.
So, upon returning from this week long trip without my kids, who I missed like crazy, I was hit with a major culture shock. If possible in one week, I forgot just how hard being a mom actually is (at least for me). Within days of returning, my excitement about what God had done and showed me on the trip was starting to wear off, and I was back to figuring out how to “survive” my daily life… in general, I feel like my first two years as a parent were lived out in “survival mode.”
But the Lord has been teaching me a lot through this return back to the life that he has given me. The biggest thing I’m learning is that worship is not circumstantial! The BIG God who was letting us in on His awesome works in London is the SAME God that walks with me as I am teaching my three year old to love his little brother. He is no less worthy of my worship, and perhaps part of the reason I feel as though am merely “surviving” is because I haven’t consciously chosen to acknowledge and/or exalt him in the day to day, mundane rhythms of life.
Here’s the other thing. I often feel like I need to get away from my family to be with God in order to recharge. And yes, we all need to get time with the Lord alone so that we can know him. But, I think I have had it a little wrong… it’s almost as if I think when I go away to be with God, I am charging up my Holy Spirit battery, and if I don’t get back to him for awhile, or if my daily life is particularly draining, then I am surely going to run out of Spirit power. I know it sounds silly, but I truly think I see it that way sometimes.
The reality is that I think I rely on my time alone to recharge me instead of relying on the Spirit who is ever present as a Helper to me. He doesn’t run out. He has at his disposal for us a perfect, eternal supply of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control. And his giving these things to us does not depend at all on our ability to perform, but only on our willingness to trust Him in the present moment.
So, these two things – worship that’s not circumstantial and dependence on the Spirit moment by moment – have collided in a beautiful way since I’ve been back home. The result has been more contentment and a bigger love for God. Not that I have arrived by any means, but I am happy to see him fulfilling his promises to make me more like Jesus.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this or ways the Lord is teaching you too. Feel free to share with me in the comments section. (All 8 of you.) Much love!
Hopefully that writer’s block thing is gone now!!