This morning I was sitting outside listening to the birds make their morning sounds and the crickets sing beneath a sky that was about to light up with a blazing sun. It was stunning! (And coffee, I had coffee!) I love these early mornings with DAD. There are some mornings I just want to cuddle back beneath the sheets but then I remind myself I’d miss this. This is not some legalistic thing I do. I know that if I needed to get a bit more sleep, DAD would be completely fine with it, but what I find is I WANT THIS! I want this more than I want an extra hour of sleep. I want this more than I want to go on a morning run. (To which some of you are like, umm, who wants a morning run anyway…;).) Here’s the thing, I want this time because I want Him! DAD won my heart over twenty years ago and He has continued to win my heart every day since.
If there is any encouragement I’d give moms, it’d be to keep growing in your relationship with Jesus. He is our “very present help,” our Strength, our Peace, our Comfort, our Redeemer, our Advocate, our Life! Aaaannnnddd, it will be the greatest gift you give to your children! You may never do a single pinterest activity or throw an outstanding birthday party or keep a clean house or stick to one family Bible study before trying something else or home-make meals over buying premade ones or…
BUT, if your children see you seeking God day in and day out, if they see you praying, if they see your Bible open on your counter where you can grab a verse or two in between Mount Laundry and breaking up fights, if they hear worship music streaming through your house, if they see your teary eyes looking at them while you ask for forgiveness because mommies aren’t perfect and need so much of His grace too, then my friends, you are giving them the Greatest Gift – YOU ARE GIVING THEM HIM!
Even though we had some standing as Christ’s apostles, we never threw our weight around or tried to come across as important, with you or anyone else. We weren’t aloof (distant, detached) with you. We took you just as you were. We were never patronizing, never condescending, but we cared for you the way a mother cares for her children. We loved you dearly.Not content to just pass on the Message, we wanted to give you our hearts. And we did. (1 Thessalonians 2:7)
We are parents. God has given us a level of authority with our littles, but He has not given us free reign to treat them however we want to. They are first and foremost His, and it can make all the difference if we remember that fact. It is a Truth that still convicts and guides me as my children get older and develop their personalities and, ahem, their attitudes. 🙂 I suppose it can help us if we think of it this way: if we are watching someone else interact with our children, even correct them, how do we want them to do that? I know there are times when I’ve been comfortable with others’ interactions with my children and there have been other times I have grabbed my children and left a situation because of how they were going about it. Well, DAD has an eye on us daily. He sees how we treat His children. BUT EVEN BETTER, we are still His children! And because of this, He offers us much grace! He knows we’re gonna lose it some days and get it right other days. He doesn’t sit up in heaven waiting with His paddle, ready to strike as soon as we sin again. In fact, I don’t see Him sitting around at all!
You’re doing laundry, He’s switching it out with you. You’re cleaning the kitchen AGAIN, He’s got His hand over yours wiping away. You’re up in the middle of the night with a crying baby, He’s there. It’s why He sent Jesus – to make a way to be with you all the time, with nothing to separate you from Him! Think about that…He sent Jesus to carry all your sins and nail them to a cross and lay in a grave for three days and then defeat death by rising again so that He could sit right down with you and your kids and watch another episode of Mickey Mouse! …or to stand with you as you make another meal that some kids will like and others will try to get out of eating…or to give you courage and strength as you walk your child into another place where people will soon notice he/she is different and has special needs or a bad attitude or bad behaviors. God gave up His best so that He could do life – ALL OF IT – with you! He delights in it all because He delights in being with you!
This week, ponder this verse as you move throughout your day, especially that last part, “…we wanted to give you our hearts. And we did.” Give Him your heart so that you can offer your children the very best gift – Your heart wrapped up in His. *