Oh praise Him/ Oh praise Him/ He is holy/ He is holy/ la la lala lala… That old song that I first heard when I was dating the man who would become my husband… That old song that we had seen in concert at least three times… That old song that I sang each night to my toddling first born as I put him down to sleep… I sung that old song tonight. That toddler is seven now: a boy who thrives on responsibility and…Continue Reading “Oh Praise Him”
The kitchen was messy on Friday. The toaster was still on the counter from the morning. The clean dishes in the dishwasher needed to be put away so that the pile of dirty dishes in the sink could be cleaned. There were bagels next to the kindergarten homework folder… next to three half-full glasses of water with straws standing tall… next to a document I needed to return to my son’s preschool… next to the cantaloupe rinds that were supposed to be taken to the…Continue Reading “Haze”
I was alone in my friend’s kitchen, rinsing off strawberries and slicing them up to serve over ice cream, when I heard the topic for the group’s discussion announced: raising counter-cultural teenagers. Did I hear that right? Most of the people gathered were parents of babies, toddlers and 2nd-graders. Were we really talking about teenagers tonight? I was thankful to be in the other room so no one could see the fear behind my eyes. Parenting through the teen years is something I am scared…Continue Reading “Teenagers?!?”
Every mama needs a break. I’ve seen it in the faces of my friends this last month—that worn-down, pushed-to-my-limits face of needing rest. If she could just shut off her brain from her to-do’s, or stop feeling the guilt of “not good enough,” or have an hour of uninterrupted personal space, she could feel joy again. I learned recently about Working from Rest. So often we Rest from our Work, but I challenge you today to Work from your Rest. It’s a tricky mental shift,…Continue Reading “First: Rest”
Dear New Mom, I sit here, typing in the dark on the night that stands seven years removed from the first night I held my firstborn son. I couldn’t get over the miracle of his life. I couldn’t get over how I was holding this person in my arms, who just hours before was a part of me. Now, he was quite himself and quite not a part of me. He was so perfect. A little bit of dark hair on that round head. Tiny little nose. Long, wrinkly…Continue Reading “Dear New Mom”
Sometimes, we are really bad at things we feel like we should be good at as parents. For example, I am really bad at putting my almost-two-year-old down for a nap. Not really bad as in I don’t do it or I put it off when I should, but really bad as in almost every time I try, he resists and I do not achieve my goal. I’m pretty sure it goes back way to the beginning of our history together, mamma and son, when…Continue Reading “Failing spaces”
I sat across from my good friend over flatbread pizza and a Caesar salad. It had been a half a year since I had seen her. She was busy with finishing up her master’s degree and putting hours in at two different internships. It seemed as if she had done so much changing, so much moving in a positive direction. I was still doing my same thing of raising little royalty. It is a tricky thing for a stay-at-home mom to update a friend on…Continue Reading “My Greatest Work”
Yesterday I got to share a cup of coffee with a mom of three young ones. She told me about her husband’s crazy work schedule and his upcoming trip overseas. She told me about her mom that cared for her much and her dad that was not around. Then she mentioned, almost without realizing it, that growing up one of six children in a single-mom household had taught her important lessons. She had learned patience, and she had learned that the world did not revolve…Continue Reading “When We Aren’t Enough”
My hands were on the wheel, my SUV pulling out of the church parking lot. It was me, and three boys in my back seat. They were a bit worn from their two-hour rehearsal for the Christmas program. I was playing worst-case scenarios in my head for how we would proceed for the rest of the day. How little sleep did they get at Grandma’s and Grandpa’s last night? How much sugar did they smuggle while there? How will I convince them to nap this…Continue Reading “His Voice”
Something happened. I was hanging out with my group of friends. Our littles were watched by a baby-sitter in one room. Our 6-year-olds were in another room playing together. And then something happened.
The moms started hearing bits and pieces. This boy said one thing. That girl said another thing. We started asking questions, wanting to know what really happened. Was it my son that needs to apologize? What were they playing? Why did it happen?
My son told me his part of the story, but he did it begrudgingly—not wanting to talk about it. Was it because he was a little embarrassed? Was it because he did something he shouldn’t have? Was it because it wasn’t that big of a deal to him?
All kinds of questions ran through my head. I wanted to know what happened. I wanted to know why he didn’t want to talk much about it. I wanted to know what was going on in his head. I wanted to know how best to respond to the situation. I wanted to know now.
Ironic how I had just been studying patience earlier that day, but now patience was the last thing on my mind. As my brain wrestled with the onslaught of questions, I felt God saying, “Wasn’t I just teaching you about patience? Remember the verse?”
“Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly.” Proverbs 14:29
Susan Merrill, from The Passionate Mom, describes patience as “the ability to suppress restlessness or annoyance when confronted with delay.” Was my knee-jerk reaction showing restlessness? yes. Annoyance? perhaps. Was my son in immediate danger? no. Could I pray about this for a while and wait for the proper time for the truth to surface? yes.
So I am praying that the Lord would give me patience. And I will pray for patience and peace for my friends as they walk through the same scenario with their children.
I know that the Lord will give great understanding in his good time, and that is enough to extinguish the fires of restlessness and annoyance within me [for now].