I can make it a habit of being discouraged. The dog barks too loud, the kids ask the wrong question at the wrong time, leave their socks lying around for the last time, you get the picture. My quiet, reflective morning easily turns to despair when 2 or more of these items happen at the same time. The great, fun, exciting plans for the day are dashed in my head now….
Why do I get like this? Why do I let my outward circumstances steal away my inward joy? Because it’s LIFE! Because the dog tracks in water on the floor when it’s been raining (or snowing!) outside for 3 days in a row, the kids leave the jelly out after they use it, they don’t brush their teeth without me reminding them and the living room looks like the rapture just occured (but I know it didn’t, because I’m still here!). It’s just L-I-F-E and the messes it brings for us to clean up – JOYFULLY! Well, not alway joyfully here. I usually like to inform the kids that I wouldn’t be go grumpy if they did their part…the cup of milk wouldn’t have spilled if you’d be more careful…if you’d done…were more….moved less…all of this would have been prevented and my day would be perfect.
But that’s really not true. A day without clean-ups, fix-ups, white outs, “I’m sorry”, “Excuse me”, “Grab a towel!”, would be like a day with no traffic in Dallas – it ain’t happening! I heard a friend say one time, “I’d make a great home school mom if it weren’t for all these kids!” I feel the same way. I would be a great house keeper if it wasn’t for the for 10 legs walking around my house….forgot the dog…14 legs.
But how much fun would that be? Honestly, for 1 day, it might be outstanding! Day 2, a little quiet. Day 3, lonely. Day 4, depressed. Day 5, why? There would be no purpose to live without another person around.
Steven Curtis Chapman has a song called Something Beautiful. It reminds me that the only hands big enough for all of ME is Jesus. Not only do His hands hold the whole world, they hold me and all my mess ups, spills, oops, and frustrations.
When Jesus fed 4,000 people, (men) He first asked His disciples a question. He said, “What do you have?” They said, “I don’t know, let me go check. Ok, Jesus, we found 7 loaves of bread and some fish.” Jesus said, “OK, tell the people to sit down.” Then Jesus took the bread, gave thanks and gave it to the disciples to give to the people. After everyone had been fed, the disciples went around and collected 12 basketfuls of leftovers. Wow! But all these years, I’ve missed something. Yes, Jesus multiplied the bread and fish to meet the need and I’ve seen Him multiply my single digit “loaves” into enough for the month many times. But I’ve missed what the disciples did in that story. They started with what they had. They gave it to Jesus. Jesus gave it back to them. It was more than enough. Not only that, but if it was the little boy’s lunch, I imagine it’s possible those “loaves” of bread were crumbly broken pieces – if he was anything like my little boys.
Sometimes all I have to give my Savior is a bunch of broken, crumbly stale bread that’s been wadded up in a nakpin all day. He still asks me to give it to Him. Then somehow, miraculously, He gives me fresh baked, steaming hot bread, and enough to feed those around me, with enough left over – maybe for me to nibble on later. How can this be? I am so unworthy of such a gift.
Thank you Jesus for your love. Thank you for loving me, a habitual complainer and frequently frustrated mom. I give you these words, these frustrations, the walking treasures that live in my house. I pray you supply me with food to give to them. Thank you.