Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27
We all have days, weeks, sometimes seasons when we are overwhelmed with life, going ninety miles per hour, but not necessarily getting anywhere. Sometimes that’s from our own doing and other times it’s just the way it is.
For five years, I was the guinea pig running on the little exercise wheel, wearing myself out with life’s demands. I was attached to my phone or computer all the time. I was enveloped with my job. I was absorbed with forging ahead in all that I thought only I could do. Then, in 2011, my Heavenly Father brought me completely out of that season and blessed me with a time of rest. It is in that rest I have discovered powerful opportunities, both big and small, to just stop, breathe, let go, and let God. It is here that I’ve realized all the things that make me go Hhhmmmmmm!
Now, I’m not referring to the song that was so popular years ago–no. I’m referring to those things that calm my spirit, fill me with His peace, and wrap me up in His love. It’s all those things that were obscured in the midst of the rat race I was running.
Sitting on the beach gazing at the clouds.
Listening to the plethora of birds singing on an early morning.
Watching the sun sparkle and glisten upon the ocean.
Seeking out His Creation–Oh how that draws me so near to Him!
Walking alongside dolphins during their morning playtime.
Feeling my whole body relax as I embrace my child and feel the rhythm of his breathing next to mine.
Opening up my Bible and feeling the thin pages between my fingers.
Truly absorbing the Living Word. Not just reading it because it’s part of the routine, but reading it to connect with my Father and hear Him speak to me!
Understanding fully that God’s plan is greater than mine, and asking–no–telling Him that all I want is what He wants. (Boy is that taking a different tack!)
But here is what makes me go Hhhmmmmm the most–my need to control has been tempered, and there is now a sense of comfort and excitement as I wait for God to reveal what is next. That has NEVER happened before! And I don’t think that would have ever happened if I had not been brought to a place where I finally had to stop, rest in Him, and earnestly seek His loving care.
What are the things that make you go Hhhmmmmm? Or is God calling you to stop spinning so quickly on your guinea pig wheel so you can actually realize those things again?
It is so natural for all of us to charge ahead full force trying to make our way in this world. Thank you for new eyes to see that this is not what you desire for us. Thank you for the peace you bring to my soul. I lift up all who are in need of your rest.
Sharing at The Better Mom, Titus 2sday, NOBH, and Friendship Fridays
Now I am doing a new thing, do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland. Isaiah 43:19
This morning, I along with the other moms at the bus stop were cheering and whistling as our children stepped onto the bus. After it drove away, we all looked at each other with perplexed looks in our eyes and laughed! Why were we cheering? Isn’t that something we should have saved for the first day of school? Now our kids were going to be home ALL DAY–EVERY DAY. Doesn’t that now increase the mom demands exponentially? Won’t we now need more food on hand, and won’t the house be even dirtier? Won’t the noise factor now triple? Won’t the sibling squabbles increase, too?
Ugh! I could get really depressed if I think of how my quiet lunch times out on the screened in porch will be no more….
But then….I think of all the quality time just waiting there for me to embrace with my boys. (Isn’t that what I was missing so much while they were in school?) I think of the lazy mornings when we will enjoy cartoons together and the beautiful days that await us at the beach. I think of the opportunities to talk, laugh, and wonder with them. Yes, of course, I will be refereeing them to some degree, too, but even those can be learning moments where God can reveal Himself to all of us. There will be the sunrise walks on the shore with my middle son; surf club with my oldest; and indoor soccer with my youngest. There will be bike rides and skateboarding, popsicles and excursions to the market! And who knows what else…….the possibilities are endless!
Yeah! Whooo! Hoooo! Now I know why I was really cheering this morning!
What will you do this summer with your children?
Thank you for more time with my children. Let us make memories that will last a lifetime with you in the center of them all.
But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:31
This afternoon I sat on the shore watching my oldest and his friend play in the surf. The winds were quite strong, and the red flags were up indicating a strong risk for rip currents. The boys stayed right on the edge either wrestling with the last breaking wave or gliding along on their skim boards. I love these kinds of days, because I know they won’t be venturing out to areas where I may need to be concerned for their safety, and that gives me a chance to revel in God’s creation around me.
Normally I see ghost crabs clawing through the sand and sandpipers dashing back and forth, but today it was too windy for such small creatures. Instead, I first witnessed a lone pelican flying north up the shore. I assumed it’s long wing-span gave him more strength to battle flying against the wind. Then, just above me, a powerful osprey turned into the wind.
It flapped its wings with all its might, but to no avail. It made no headway. I was immediately reminded of all the times I have tried and tried to make something happen in my own strength, only to find that I’m not getting anywhere.
When it finally realized all the flapping in the world wasn’t going to work, for a brief moment it just stopped fighting the wind. Hmm…this is just like all the times I’ve finally come to the end of myself and for a brief moment have stopped fighting for MY way.
Then the most beautiful thing happened! With his wings open wide, he surrendered and let the wind freely carry him in a direction he never knew he was going to go. Oh friend, don’t you see it’s the same way for you and me! With our arms open wide, surrendering to our loving Jesus, He will carry us to places we never thought we would go!
I will always be so grateful for how you speak to us through your amazing Creation. Praise you, Father!
But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. Luke 2:19
Last night I had the joy of sitting with my three boys and watching video footage of them from when they were babies. There were so many incredible blessings I was able to see again, and some for the very first time.
I saw my husband holding his boys in his arms and dancing and playing with them.
I saw the birth of our second son, who took three days and finally a C-section to deliver! (I had never watched the footage before.)
I saw my two oldest, one was three and the other was about nine months, playing in the bathtub, laughing and giggling with those from-the-gut, belly laughs.
I saw numerous Christmas mornings where my sweet babies’s eyes transformed from sleepy to brilliant and sparkling with excitement.
I was even blessed with footage of my father that I had never seen before.
And while these are incredibly precious blessings I was able to see on the TV, they paled in comparison to watching my boys, who are so much older now, watch themselves.
My oldest, whom I have written about many times because he’s now entering those teenage years, leaned on my shoulder and softly shared, “I wish I could go back to those times again. They were so free.” Wow.
My middle one saw his first Christmas when Santa brought him his panda bear, and his face lit up! He then quickly dashed to his bedroom to find Panda, whom he had dismissed to his pile of stuffed animals a couple of years ago. When I tucked him in for the night, guess who he was snuggled up with? Panda.
My youngest sat quietly as we watched footage of my dad, and then he asked, “Did Grandpa love me, too?” (He passed away when my youngest was about 6 months old) “Oh, yes!” I responded through tears, “He loved you, dearly!”
I saw our family. I was reminded of beautiful memories that have been stored in my heart for years; memories that bond us together forever; memories that bring us closer; memories that strengthen us as we all grow.
Thank you, Lord, for letting me see your work in our lives through these home movies!
What do I say to a mom who held her baby close in her arms,
praying her son would know he was fearfully and wonderfully made?
To a mom who watched her toddler sleeping peacefully,
after a day at the beach, he played.
What do I say to a mom whose heart smiled with joy
watching her little boy ride his bike for the very first time?
To a mom who worried night after night,
wondering what her young man was doing now that he could drive?
What do I say to a mom whose deepest desire
was that he would know God had a purpose for his life?
Who from the moment her son was born,
hoped to protect him from any strife?
What do I say to a mom whose heart fluttered with pride and fear
when the man who stood before her declared his choice was clear?
What do I say to a mom whose son answered the call….
and now must endure the heartbreak after he gave his all?
Thank you will never be enough,
But I hope that you will know,
Because of your son’s sacrifice,
I’m blessed with the freedom to…
Hold my baby close in my arms so I can also pray
he, too, will know that he is fearfully and wonderfully made….
By Christy Mactavish
Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37 :4
I have used the words in the title of this post many times on the Cross Moms Facebook page. Tonight, though, I am overflowing with tears of joy because He let me indulge in my heart’s desires.
From my recent post, It’s a New Day–Embrace It, you will find that I have really been struggling with how little real time I have with my three boys, even though I am not working full time anymore. Well, out of the blue, my husband proposed that we go out for my Mother’s Day dinner tonight rather than dealing with the crowds on Sunday.
Now, since all my boys were outside playing with their friends, I thought for sure it would be a hassle to draw them away for a family dinner. In our house, there is usually always one, and it’s not always the same one, who opposes the family plans, and that can start the whole evening off on the wrong foot for everyone. Not tonight, though.
The food itself was not so great, but in all honesty, it didn’t matter. The laughter, joy, silliness, and real time made up for the stale hamburger buns!
On our way home, my husband dashed into the local market to quickly pick up some ice cream. Little did I know that he bought my absolute favorite–Cherry Garcia Ice Cream! Yum! You see, that ice cream flavor sings of one of the most amazing times in my life, when my husband and I lived in NYC–before children wiped out our bank accounts! 😉
Before we savored each bite of the ice cream together, we first walked out to the beach for a simple family walk. Those last glowing rays of the setting sun shimmered on each crashing wave, and every ripple in the sand was highlighted. Two of my children reveled in burying each other in the sand, while my middle son sought after his Daddy for some one-on-one time throwing the nerf ball he brought with him. You see, he’s just at that age where he is craving that time with his Daddy; and I am so thankful that his Daddy realizes that. I literally stood in awe watching all my boys and praising God for the gift of this evening. Eventually, a family game of “Monkey in the Middle” ensued, and of course, Dad and Mom were the monkeys!
Just like my middle son was craving that time with his Daddy–and his Daddy knew it, I have been craving that time with my children–and my Heavenly Daddy knew it. My heart is overflowing with gratitude!
Thank you, Jesus, for knowing and honoring my heart’s desires.