Motherhood has brought me face-to-face with some the most tenderhearted moments of my life and at the same time it's brought me to tears as I realize just how worked up I can get about a situation. Disciplining a toddler is not for the faint of heart. Our relationship can be sweet and gentle one moment and then turn into an all out brawl the next. I'm not proud of it, but the daily nap time battles are wearing me down.
In these moments, when I am least proud of the mother I am, this is where I become keenly aware of my need for Jesus. It seems I have no control over my child's words and actions. I like to think I am doing my best (and also not my best) to discipline this toddler in a loving, yet firm way.
And Jesus is still there. He meets me in my mistakes. When I have to step out of the room and take a deep breath, confess my desire for control, getting caught up in doing things "my way" and recognize my inability to make it happen. In these moments when I am at a loss, I can only lean on Him and trust His Word. He is faithful.
I was thinking the other day as I read an old favorite devotional, 31 Days of Praise, and noticed some of the notes in it from previous times I'd read it. I thought about how things that seemed like such disappointments in 1998 and following years, pale in comparison to the roads I've walked since then.
The author, Ruth Meyers, uses Scripture in each day's reading, basing her words on what is written in God's Word. My circumstances are not by accident, but they are "raw material for blessing" in my life and those around me.
give thanks in all circumstances...
1 Thessalonians 5:18a
While I wouldn't say my current circumstances are particularly hard, I have been walking through a time of transition. I am in a totally new season: we moved across the country to a small town where I am slowly forming friendships and am now a stay-at-home mom to two children.
This reminder of having an attitude of gratefulness is so important for me to cling to in the harder moments of motherhood. When I am feeling stranded because we currently have one car and there are days my husband needs it for work; I can load up the kids in our double stroller and go for a walk. While walking, I am reminded of God's bigness with the sky stretching to meet the road ahead.
Other days, I simply need to ask Him to meet me where I am, whether it's standing at the sink doing dishes or turning on a favorite Pandora station to sing along.
I have to choose to focus on the beautiful moments of motherhood. There are so many and I made a list in my journal to remind me of the moments I love on a daily basis.
- Singing to M when she goes to bed. She usually asks for a hymn and lately it's been Amazing Grace (My Chains are Gone)
- Reading books to the kids
- Smiles and giggles from B
- Telling Brandon the funny things M said or did during the day
- Snuggling B after he nurses
I could go on and on once I stop to think about the beautiful moments of motherhood.