It’s been one of those weeks. A lot of “little things” that cause frustration with the kids, the hubby, my job, and the perpetually undone things around the house….well let’s just say somewhere along the way all those frustrations collided.
All it took was me having to repeat myself to the big kids for a third time to “set the table” and something that I think would resemble how some scientists propose the Big Bang occurred was set into action.
I had to call a family meeting later that night and ask the kids and the hubby for forgiveness.
It is kinda a funny thing to look a man and two preteens in the eyes and ask them to extend me grace and mercy during this season of balancing interrupted sleep, my job and housework all while crazy nursing hormones are racing through my body.
Looking back on that conversation….I might as well have been trying to explain Algebra to the baby and expecting her to understand.
I went to bed defeated and longing to do a better job of taking my thoughts captive so the devil doesn’t gain ground in our family. As I laid there in bed I knew there was something deeper that was causing me so much frustration.
A few weeks back I very clearly heard the Holy Spirit tell me to spend the days leading up to Easter doing three things that always produce love, joy, peace, patience, kindness. goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control in my life…three disciplines that clear my mind of the negative thoughts and fill it with things of God, the fruit of His Spirit.
First, I heard God tell me to read through the Gospels from April 1st to Easter on the 20th. It was a very specific thing and something I had never thought about doing before so I knew it was God telling me to discipline myself to read about my Savior during this Easter season.
I counted it up and it was only going to be about 4 chapters a day. I can do that. Easy Peasy….or so I thought.
Second, God told me to get off my butt and start working out again. (Maybe God doesn’t use the B-U-T-T word with you, but sometimes this girl requires a firm word from her Daddy in heaven)
One morning, I was trying to get on some of my pre-pregnancy summer pants and found myself in disgust. That’s when I heard that gentle voice telling me I was beautiful in His sight and to join Him each morning for a walk or on the elliptical and we’d work on getting those pounds off together.
This was followed up with the “B-U-T-T” instruction I got from Him.
Love how He is gentle…yet firm with me. Exactly how I want to be with my own kiddos.
Third, I am supposed to be writing more and sharing what I write.
Over the past few weeks I have felt a familiar nudge in my heart.
A life lesson story from my past would come to mind and I would feel the need to go to the computer and write to record it so that someday my kids and grandkids will have these stories written down and perhaps learn from my life.
Not one time have I followed through and written the stories down.
The nudges to write also have come several times when something would happen during my day and I would clearly hear, “go write that down and share it because I want to use you to teach someone else what I am teaching you.”
Nope. I haven’t written a single thing.
Then there was the sweet girl from church that I really only know in passing. We always smile and say “Hi” when we pass each other in the hallways at church, but I don’t think we have even spoken a full sentence to each other before this past week.
I spotted her in the grocery store as I was trying to be incognito because I hadn’t had a shower that day and my outfit and baseball hat screamed of a momma needing a fashion intervention.
I got up the guts to say a cordial, “Hi, how are you?”
As always she gave a sweet smile and said “Hi” back, but then she continued.
“I read your blog and I love it. You are so real, and I enjoy reading it”
Okay. I almost laugh every time someone mentions “my blog.”
“My blog” was really something I only intended to write on for a few weeks as a 10th anniversary gift to my husband. I wanted the accountability of close friends and family who I thought might read ‘our story’ and keep me motivated until I got all of ‘our story’ written out. I had no intention of ever posting anything on there again after our tenth anniversary in 2009.
But then, somehow, other people started reading what I was writing.
Several of the people who were reading along as I wrote out my and Joe’s story wrote me long emails about how my words had helped them, and how they hoped I would keep writing. Some of the emails came from people I barely knew.
I didn’t really get the whole blog thing. Who has time to sit around and read about other people’s lives? I am quite busy with my own life to read about all that is going on in the lives of others…especially people who I have never met.
So, I decided to just keep “my blog” active and figure out what to do with the requests of those who had emailed me.
Over the past 5 years, I have just used my little space on the internet to post something I write from time to time. . . occasionally I will write something and the Holy Spirit lets me know that someone else needs to read what I have written, so I post it.
Every time I post something I have second thoughts because the written word is so powerful and once written you can’t ever get it back. It goes into the hearts and minds of those who read it.
It has always been my desire for the words I speak and the words I write to reflect an authentic me. An imperfect follower of Jesus.
And if for some crazy reason someone chooses to “follow ‘my blog'” I want them to come away from it thinking and talking more about Jesus and not more about me or my words.
My heart’s desire is that words I use only point people who hear them or read them to be encouraged to read more of the ONLY words that bring life…the Word of God.
The Big Bang of emotions a few nights ago was not about the table that I ended up setting myself.
At the root of it all was the fact that I had not been obedient.
My own disobedience to do the things that God was clearly telling me to do had led to me spewing out anything but the fruit of the Spirit to the three people I love the most in my life.
So here goes….(she writes with trembling fingers and all the anxiety in her heart that an introvert feels when they open themselves up to be known)
I’m going to be obedient.
Starting today I am going to read through the Gospels before Easter.
I’m going to write every day and post them more frequently to ‘my blog’ when I feel that ‘nudge.’
And by golly…I am going to get off my B-U-T-T so I can actually fit into a few of my summer clothes and believe the words that my Father speaks over me as I look in the mirror in disgust….”You are beautiful, my child”
Joe and I are currently memorizing some verses along with our kids.
This week’s verse is Matthew 5:6.
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled.”
I love that this verse does not say blessed are the righteous.
Instead, it says that those who hunger and thirst for righteousness are blessed (which means happy) and will be filled.
The ‘do’ part of my obedience is worthless unless it is an overflow of my obedience to “be.”
In two weeks when Easter rolls around, I hope to have made it through the Gospels. I sure plan on having written and shared some things. And I would love it if my summer pants are a little closer to fitting over my thighs.
But truth is….my deepest desire is that on Easter morning I am filled….filled not because of what I have done but because of who I am in Christ….His child whom He loved enough to bear all my imperfections.