August Reading: The Book of Jonah
August Memory Verse: Psalm 84:1-2
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"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, but in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your path straight" Proverbs 3:5-6
This is not a post about Jonah. This is a post about Joseph.
My Joseph. The child that was born to Lem and me 13 years ago.
Growing up, all I really ever wanted was to be a Mother. That's it.
I wanted to get married too, but the dreams I had revolved around motherhood. My heart did not have big ambitions of a great career, or a high paying job. [some days I wish they did!]
My dreams were about rocking babies, changing diapers, and everything else that comes with motherhood.
When I found out that I was pregnant in November of 2000, I was the happiest girl on the planet. My life changed from that day forward.
God had given me the desire of my heart, the desire that was planted so many years before.
On August 5th, 2001, when Joseph was born, I knew that my heart had now been permanently taken out of my chest. Taken out and put into a little 8lb 4 oz baby boy.
Motherhood is hard. The hardest thing I have ever done.
Nothing else brings me to my face before the Lord than the cries of my heart over my children.
Nothing else brings the JOY that rushes like a waterfall into my heart than my children.
Nothing else brings out every ounce of insecurity that hide in the crevices of my heart than my children.
Nothing else sheds every inch of my pride than my children. [hello, humility]
Nothing else brings out my mama bear protective instinct than my children.
I have made so many mistakes with them, and I am sure I will continue to make many more. However, it won't be for a lack of loving them.
"Now these three things remain: faith, hope,and love. But the greatest of these is love." 1 Corinthians 13:13
There's nothing more I want to "get right" than being their mother. I only have one shot at this. One.
I often think about being very old and looking back over my life. The thing that I will want to have invested in the most besides my marriage, is my children. Motherhood is literally training up disciples. What a high calling.
However, sometimes I can let that "getting it right" part paralyze my heart and make me scared of making mistakes. Fear will start to creep in.
Other times, I find myself getting caught up in guilt--a lot. Too much than I should. I find myself constantly evaluating my decisions and how they affect my kids. If I feel I haven't spent enough time with them, or given them enough of me, I spiral down, down, down. Guilt comes, and it's ugly.
But then, I hear a soft whisper, "There is no condemnation in Christ Jesus", Romans 8:1
Then, I exhale.
I did my best.
I have tomorrow to do it all over again.
These are the parts that I never saw in my childhood dreams. I didn't envision the messy parts, just the pretty parts.
However, I am learning that the messy is beautiful.
Messy is where our Savior is found.
Messy is where God's Love pours down and covers all the stains, mistakes, and guilt with a blanket of Grace.
Without the mess, we miss the masterpiece of God's perfect Grace.
There's no perfect Mother, only a Perfect God.
When we fail again, His Grace rushes in, again.
"May the Lord cause you to flourish, both you and your children. May you be blessed by the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth." Psalm 115:14
swallowed up by God's Grace,