Things here have been hard lately. Struggles and challenges with kiddos, life in general, and a lot (mostly?)within my own heart. I have had a hard time recently with filtering problems correctly – in fact it feels like there has been no filter at all. Which equals every.single.little.thing. becoming a gigantic deal in my head.
In all of this, I know that God is near. And I have found inspiration in the Bible. And there have been prayers of people who care.
One of the things that helps is a focus on gratitude. As in – my last post? Yes, that was an attempt to choose gratitude when I didn’t feel particularly blessed. That’s the thing with life, though. It’s not as pretty as all the Pinterest pictures. It’s real. It’s ugly sometimes. And the only way to combat it is Truth. Beauty. Goodness. A turning back to Him. I know this, but when the house is crazy messy, I haven’t had a break for awhile, the kids refuse to listen, there’s another potty mess on the floor…. Yeah. It’s all too easy to feel defeated. Oh and when the behavior issue with the child shows up again? Why do I assume this is the way he/she will always be? I mean, I grow and change. And it’s not always for the worse. I need to assume good and right and beautiful things for my children. And for myself. Discouragement is a tilled garden ready and waiting for the devil to plant his lies.
The verse comes to mind —
“Why art thou cast down, oh my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? HOPE THOU IN GOD: for I shall yet praise Him for the help of His countenance.” Psalm 42:5
I got my coffee this morning and sat down, all too aware again of my own failings… but thanking God that I actually woke up rested this morning. I sat down and began to write down my thoughts/prayers.. and a picture came to my mind. This picture was of myself and my children, on a raft out on the ocean. All around were sharks, birds of prey, and a raging ocean. I was standing, with my children around my feet, doing all I could to fight… exhaustion and weariness totally overwhelming me, when suddenly Jesus appears and says-
“Just hold them… and pray.”
He then proceeded to do exactly what I had been trying to do, fought off all the adversaries, and rescued us. All I had to do was hold them. And pray. You know, I spend so much time as a mother just consumed and overwhelmed with my children’s behaviors, flaws, challenges, trying to fix it all and go around like a helicopter parent way. too. much.
It’s no wonder that so many days I’m just like – let me get out of here and have a cup of coffee by myself and do something sane like eat a meal or go to the bathroom without someone crying/screaming/breaking something/throwing a fit/spilling something/etc.
“Just hold them. And pray.”
I take way too much on my shoulders. I don’t exactly know how to let Jesus do this thing? But I’m trying to learn. Bit by bit. Just like my dear kiddos. We’re all just messy, flawed humans trying to figure this all out. Thank God for His mercy.
As I thought about this picture of Jesus fighting my battles… this came to my heart, and I wrote it down. Sometimes when you are hurting the hardest is when you feel the rescue most deeply.
Fierce are the waves that are raging about me,
Roaring and loud and filled with despair,
I, on my little raft nearly right broken
Clinging to splinters of safety and air.
Wild are the beasts of sky and of ocean,
Snapping and swooping and almost consume
Fear tortures soul and my tears are an ocean
Anguish and keening, my death I assume.
Then in the blackness Another is present.
Glimpses of brightness arise to my sight
A Dangerous Holy is here – and I know Him!
My breath catches hope as He rises to fight.
With sword flashing high and a Presence unearthly
My Rescuer battles each foe and each lie
The fiends are no match for this Power unleashing
The Master of ocean, of earth and of sky.
With one mighty whisper, the raging is silent
“Peace be still” and the calm is immediate, true.
Soul-rest for my world weary heart and it’s grieving
Not only a rescue, but all things made new.
He kneels and He wraps me all safe in His presence,
And whispers “Be still in your soul-all is well.
Your tears are all bottled, in my sight you’re favored
These battles you’re fighting are not yours at all.”
I rest in my weakness and know that He holds it,
Right there in the palm of His capable hand-
For it’s His strength I’m seeking – Oh beautiful Saviour!
Made perfect when I am unable to stand.
Now the ocean is silent, and my raft though all splintered
Is somehow made strong, sure and safe nonetheless
For Jesus is guiding me through the deep waters
I’ve anchored my soul in the haven of rest.