motherhood · reflections

When the Words are Perfect

We had one of those days yesterday.  And I had started my day with this and knew I needed these words.

And he who does not take up his cross and follow after me is not worthy of me…” ~Mt. 10:38

Perhaps our greatest daily temptation is to be impatient — to refuse to suffer.
Perhaps my greatest daily sin is to refuse to suffer — to refuse to take up the cross of Christ.
Perhaps my greatest sin is refusing to wait on God’s ways — but to want my own will done — now.

Patience is a surrendering to suffering — a willingness to wait — a carrying of the Cross.

–the words are Ann Voskamp’s…the grace is the Lord’s
I’m not a very patient person.  And my girls suffer sometimes.  Not that they haven’t done so much to add to frustration and stress.  Like the room that’s always a mess, no matter how many times we clean.  Or the crumbs that lead me to sweep three times a day.  Or the sass that I just can’t stand to hear coming out of my six year old’s mouth.
But they aren’t going to change overnight.  Attitudes and habits I’ve long let go unchecked will only change in time as we work together to become a family that is more like Christ.  A family that carries our own crosses daily.
I’m a complacent person.  I tend to do as I’m told.  I don’t usually fight back.  And sometimes I’m unhappy for it.  My girls are strong-willed, defiant, fiercely passionate about whatever they have attached themselves to in that moment.  Beautiful, wonderful gifts that will make them independent, free-thinking adults.  But today these gifts are snares that entrap my own shortcomings making me feel that nothing I ever do will be good enough.
Then last night, while Joshua entered a mountain of receipts, I read this and these words fell on my broken, mommy-weary heart.
They just want me.  Every day, every moment, they just want to know they are loved.  Cherished.  Protected.  Delighted.  
And this morning, when I rose before light with Joshua to make the coffee he takes on his now hour-long commute each day to a job that brings him home late, I read these words from a book so worn it lay flat when I turned it over, pages open to here, different colors of ink from many years of study lining its pages….

If I can stay in the middle of the turmoil calm and unperplexed, that is the end of the purpose of God. God is not working towards a particular finish; His end is the process – that I see Him walking on the waves, no shore in sight, no success, no goal, just the absolute certainty that it is all right because I see Him walking on the sea. It is the process, not the end, which is glorifying to God.

–From My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers
May I be worthy of this process of mothering….may God continue to bless me with words of love.

One thought on “When the Words are Perfect

  1. Lindsey, I read the very same post yesterday and also needed it desperately. I'm not a mommy yet, but it was a /very/ trying day, and my patience was running thin.

    The thing I realized is, it's not my strength that will get me through those tough days, not my willpower that will keep me from snapping at my husband when he doesn't deserve it. It's God strength and God's will working in me.

    Ann is such a blessing, isn't she! 🙂


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