I am a Mom. I have three children, I stay at home with them. We homeschool. I manage the house and the work that goes with taking care of it. I cook the meals, I change the diapers, I do the laundry.
I try (though probably not well enough) to meet the needs of my husband. Be his help meet, his friend, his lover.
My days start early and end late, sometimes they don’t seem to end at all. I don’t have it all figured out. There are times I am full of energy and patience and love. But I do have those days when the energy is spent almost as soon as my feet touch the floor in the morning. Or my patience is thin, and the love… well, the love takes more effort than I feel I have at that time.
Why am I sharing all of this? Not because I want to bemoan my life. I know I have an incredibly blessed existence. But, like anyone I sometimes get overwhelmed by it all. I really do love my job as a mother, wife and home maker. I believe it is my calling.
But none-the-less, sometimes it is just more than I can handle. However, I now realize this can be a good thing.
Its good because if I had it all figured out, if I knew what I was doing every moment. I would be at the great risk of becoming ungrateful, prideful or maybe bored.
Thanks to motherhood I am never board. Yes, sometimes it is mundane and repetitive. After all didn’t I just wash all the laundry yesterday? I was sure I did. But, board? No, I never have to worry about that one. And as for ungrateful or prideful? Well, if you have ever received a hug around your knees or looked into the liquid eyes staring up at you after an ill-thought word was spoken. You know, that moments of ungratefulness and pride dissolve quickly.
Though daily I am flooded with the joyous blessing that my life is, I am often caught drowning. And even that is good.
It is good because in my exhaustion from the effort to swim I find strength. I have had that moment when I have stretched myself to the limit. Poured every last drop of energy out. I have been to the point I do not have one patient word left. And there on my knees I find my strength, “God, help! I can not love them on my own today.” “I can’t be any more patient.” “I can’t….”
I’m not an “enlightened” person. But, in these moments as they have ebbed and flowed over the past few months a little light is dawning. I am starting to see something. I feel like I have a piece of the puzzle to the unending requirement of this motherhood calling.
In the moments that I have nothing left and I am crying out. That is when things turn around. My strength may be gone but His strength will take over and if I trust HIM to carry my load my burden is so much easier to bear.
I can hear His patience and love and care leave my mouth as I encourage my child to be kind to his brother. I can see through my own frustrated eye into the excited eyes of the one who thinks she is doing exactly what her mama does (even though in truth washing the dishes does not usually require that much water on the floor.) Yes, He lets me take a breath and see my children as He sees them. Shining, living, experiencing life with their whole hearts.
And I can remember, it is not about all the things I fail to do. It is about the things I can do… by His grace, leaning heavily, wholly on the one who has immeasurable amounts of the patience, kindness, and love.
So, when by Gods grace a patient word comes out of my mouth instead of the frustrated one, I Breathe:
Thank you God for letting me answer him with patience.
The hundredth time I ask the gymnast to sit down with kindness… and she does.
Thank you God that I was kind one more time.
The time I kneel down to talk to teary eyes and remind him that this brother is his best friend and he sees his heart and his wrong and then goes to his brother to right things. This time with no yelling or threatening on my part.
Thank you God for giving me the wisdom to speak to their hearts.
Gratitude to Him (God) yields me gentleness, patience, and love from Him.
This is my peek, my insight. Do I have the magic bullet? The answer to all of the demands of motherhood? No. But by gratitude, by love, by grace I am filled. Once filled I can pour that grace, love and gratitude out. And so, the cycle can continue and I realize though I may feel empty I never truly am.
28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”