With the beginning of summer break I am relieved that i
can chill a bit more. Then the anxiety slowly creeps in.
I still feel it, the anxiety that stems from
getting everything just right!
way I parent, to the way I organize my life at home.
I catch myself trying too hard to connect
with my ever growing children, in a way that feels special to all 3 on an
I want to know
them equally, I want to be a piece in their life that has allowed them to be
the best they can be, their encourager, their go getter, atta boy, atta girl
It's hard- they are all so different, how can I stretch myself as a Mom to meet all their needs? How can one person help her children thrive, when they are all 3 in completely different places, with completely different personalities?
Then I feel the peace of Summer
slowly seep away into a little island called stress.
It is here God finds me, and whispers just
one word ...
so right, the anxiety will cease when I stop worrying how I'm gonna make all
this work with each one of my very specially unique God sent children.
He says simply "listen".
This is my summer to get on
my raft, paddle away from the island of stress- the one that keeps me from
others, the one where I listen to only myself- the one where I stress myself
out about getting it all just right.
Paddle away from that lonely place into a place where I allow my
children to share openly like I share with God.
A place where I listen to my unique children,
find joy in parenting,
prayerfully guide them along the path they were each chosen for.
place to be interested in the things I'm not naturally interested in, all
because it is a part of them, and oh how I love them so.
Just this past week when I paddled into the island of
stress God had placed one word on my heart.....
And after this week its the Five Minute Friday prompt!
He's placed this word on my heart for a reason.
When she talks about her friends, how she can't wait to
learn to drive, music, and fashion, and gives her grand ideas for her future-
listen to her.
When he talks about sports players, their standings, the
latest scores, his motocross lingo, his
favorite race tracks, and the new kid next door- listen to him.
When he talks about how every Lego in the universe fits
together, and what it can do, the way things are built, and every small detail
about his favorite sci- fi movies, and the girl he has a crush on from
school, even though he's only 8- listen to him.
I realize all I can do is listen,
instead of constantly trying to figure it all out before
they even get a chance to speak.
I take comfort in His direction, and
I row back to the island of Peace, that He so lovingly
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First things first I must put that phone away, the joys I miss when constantly looking for texts, scrolling through emails, reading ads, websites- there is just so much to do on a smartphone, it's extremely hard to put it down! There literally is a difference in me between the me with "no smartphone", and the me "with smartphone". I think it should have been called the stress case phone, because once you have one it will become a crutch to life, a crutch to avoid conversations you are to afraid to face, a constant at the palm of your hand chance to find out anything you need to without patiently thinking whatever it is through. Constantly reaching for a device to provide everything we need to know, and feeling like you have to CONSTANTLY figure EVERYTHING out. There is never much quiet in my day with that mentality. Yes it can be a fabulous tool- but more often than not it becomes just an extra thing to reach for and distract us from everyday life. So this summer with my kiddos I am putting that phone away, unless I absolutely need it as a means of communication in case of an emergency; other than that I desire that calm, quiet, & devoted fun with my dear children. The kind I felt before the smartphone. The kind I enjoyed before I felt I had to always be looking at something- The time when as a Mother, I could just be.....
I was feeling despair from so many different angles; every which way I felt attacked - defeated - and just right out ready to throw my towel in and if it was possible lay in bed for days until it all magically disappeared . I felt withdrawn, hopeless, it was yet another season of not feeling Gods presence, but I was wrong- way wrong! I was withdrawn ; I threw my faith out the window and kept some of it in tact; but mostly i withdrew. I needed to read Gods word so desperately. I was feeling resentful towards family situations, and my husband- oh but he so deserved it. Feeling this way is how I knew I desperately needed to take a trip back through the New Testament and allow Jesus to speak into my tired, weary, and aching heart. I knew anything in red is just what I needed; so that is precisely what I did. As I read word for word through the first 10 chapters in the book of Matthew I was reminded of Jesus' character and how no one can ever compare to the inspiration of His life here on this earth! I took a moment and thanked God for His gift - and reminder that Jesus never turned anyone away. If you and I were unable to read His sermons we would never understand the true meaning of forgiveness. Then I thumbed through my bible and found an insert I had slipped in there back in January 2010, just waiting for this very day; it was titled our constant friend.
"At my first defense, no one came to my support, but everyone deserted me. May it not be held against them. But the Lord stood at my side and gave me strength, so that through me the message might fully be proclaimed and all the gentiles might hear it. And I was delivered from the Lions mouth. The Lord WILL rescue me from EVERY evil attack and WILL bring me safely to His Heavenly kingdom. To Him be glory for ever and ever. Amen."
If there was ever a verse to be memorized, and proclaimed in prayer during the shifting of seasons, and the roughness in growth- it is most definitely this one!
If you knew my week;about a month ago this was just what God knew I needed to hear, there was definitely a reason for it being tucked away for 3 years. The devotional I have copied below from Charles Stanley's in touch January 2010 devotional.
Many of us have experienced times of abandonment just when we needed that other person the most. It could have been a spouse withdrawing emotionally, a co-worker who ignored us, or a close friend who seemed too busy to help. The life of the apostle Paul teaches us how not to become discouraged in these situations.
Remember that the Lord is always with us. When we trust in Jesus as our personal Savior, we enter into a permanent relationship with Him, and His Spirit comes to live in us. Through the Holy Spirit, Jesus remains with us at all times, regardless of the circumstance. He is our friend—one who will never leave us. And His is the most important friendship we have. Reading our Bible will help us to remember this.
Draw on God's strength. Through the Holy Spirit, we have access to divine power every minute of the day. When we let go of control and depend on the Lord, we will be able to draw on His strength. Then, if family or friends cause hurt, His presence will provide comfort and help us to forgive them.
Look expectantly for God's deliverance. Paul testified that the Lord had rescued him and would continue to deliver him from every evil situation. He knew he could always trust God.
Paul faced many painful situations without the support of friends. Toward the end of his life, those who cared about him were widely scattered. Yet his attitude remained hopeful because Christ was his constant Friend. Do you know the Savior? Are you aware of His presence throughout your day?