I have been in San Diego with Ben as the girls have been with his parents in WA. Our family got hit with sickness this past week ending with me. Today is our third day here in CA & my first day feeling the best I have since Monday morning.
I brought some books to read and have spent some time this morning reading a book from the author Karol Ladd. She aims to help mothers become ‘Positive Attitude Coordinators’ in their life, home & community. It’s basic stuff, not heady or overly involved. Yet although it’s simple & practical–“the proof is in the pudding,” so to speak.
Last week while my oldest was sick, I was tested time & again in patience. It was one of the harder weeks of being a mama. On Friday was my breaking point. I asked God lots of questions & began to wonder if I was doing anything right in raising these girls. Did I need to revamp the way I did things or read different parenting info or what?
Then, it hit me like a bag of bricks. It wasn’t anything extraordinary, yet it was. It was that aha moment even if we’ve heard it a million times before. God confirmed that I didn’t need to scour the parenting section in the bookstore.
As the girls napped, I wrote out a mission statement for my life. As I was answering questions, a few common themes appeared. I began to connect the dots and that’s when the light bulb appeared to my aha moment.
In college and for a big chunk of my post junior high life, I’ve been told of the importance of having a daily “quiet time” with the Lord. People/mentors would quote Scripture as to why it’s important. Heck, I was one of those mentors saying the same thing to the people I cared for; however, I don’t think I really, truly understood the full value of it.
There would be people who would say things like, “oh, I can’t survive without a quiet time with the Lord,” or “All I need is alone time with God.” I remember thinking, “seriously! Are you being honest with everyone or is this just for show?”. I think for me it was more like I waited till I was starving to spend time with God.
Psalm 63:5 says this, “My soul will be satisfied as with fat and rich food, and my mouth will praise you with joyful lips.” I had been depriving myself of the feast God prepares for me daily, in order that I would be sustained throughout the day. I would use verses like “pray without ceasing” to rectify my situation, or even feel like I was holy enough to not live within Christian imposed standards. But, what I really was neglecting to see was how God was inviting me to his wasting table to dine with him, to come to his inner courts to hear his words of delight as I danced freely within the safety of his arms.
Last Friday, I heard God say that I needed to come to him daily to hear him speak to me what my worth is & where my identity rests. I need that daily time, in order to fulfill the God-given roles he has placed before me. And when I try to do this mothering, wife, friend (fill I the blank with whatever role I am carrying) thing without hearing from my perfect Father daily…I end up depriving the stomach of my soul. It’s like starting my morning by eating skittles & Coke, as if any sustenance can come from that breakfast.
When I first started our families’ blog, I had the most ridiculous address, because it was long & complicated. It was ‘tellthestory-zeph317.blogspot.com’. I quickly changed it, but the verse was spoken & prayed over me when I was doing a mission trip in college. “The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.”
This is the place where God invites me to rest and to be known. And in this day as I am able to reflect & hear from God without child interruptions, here is a quote that spoke to me, “Our delight comes in following God’s purpose & plan for our own families, not someone else’s.” I pray that you would be encouraged to feast at God’s table & find his words of delight in you as you follow him.