- In the midst of a parental moment of frustration God humbled me. It’s like God affectionately said, “Whatcha talkin bout Willis?” It’s been coming for a while, but cumulated with the nighttime rush. Sometimes it seems like the bedtime routine is the equivalent of having your toenails removed one by one or sliding down a bannister made of razor blades into a wading pool of lemon juice. Painful, right? The moment I lay the baby flat on the changing table to put her sleeper on, she screams like I am breaking her tiny bones. She equates bath, lotion, and footsie pajama application with going to sleep. In my house of insomniac wannabes, this is simply torturous. The two year old loves a bath in the morning, but suggest one at night, and I might as well be suggesting we cover our feet with lighter fluid and put them near a flame. I’ve tried to explain that bath and pajamas doesn’t mean you have to go to bed yet! Here’s what she hears of that sentence: bed. So, needless to say, it’s painful. Why is it when the going gets tough, the tough gets going in my mind?
- I realize that I’ve been performing this weekly game of dread for some time now. I truly enjoy my time off with my children. Truth be told, I love it. If it were up to me, I would do nothing but take care of my kiddos and husband. Well, I’d probably write too. That seems to have found a place in my heart. But being a Mommy is where my heart thrives right now. For some reason, I began to dread the coming days when I would work. On a Wednesday, I would think, “It’s getting closer. It’s almost time.” It got so bad, that I was missing out on the joy of the moment. I was so busy dreading the future that I was unable to enjoy the now. I was fretting like a child, dreading my bedtime. I was so busy on my countdown of doom, that I couldn’t live my blog title. I was a hypocrite. I wasn’t “savoring the essence of life”. I was smothering the essence out of my life.
- So, why do we do this? Why do we inadvertently wish away the present while we’re dreading the future? Are you guilty of being unable to fully engage with your family on Sunday evening because your thoughts are on Monday morning? What about trying to rush through a block of time, longing for something better? I’ve known a couple of Moms lately who wished the summer away for some peace and quiet, but missed their babies an hour after they were out the door. Or do you rush through work, wishing the work week away? Maybe God has you there for a reason. I remember once as a kid we were on a family outing. I didn’t get my way about something. It was so mundane that I can’t even recall the specifics now. What I do know was that I pouted the rest of the day. There’s a picture that immortalized it for all time. My cousin and siblings are all grinning at the camera, but I’m looking down in imagined anguish. So what does my present attitude look like? Is my dread and unhappiness with the moment being forever remembered in the photo that is my child’s memory? What am I teaching them about perseverance, joy, and faith? How can I expect them to trust God in all circumstances and treasure each moment He gives, if I’m looking down in imagined anguish? I have heard a story about my Mom when she was a girl. Her and her sister would receive lollipops for a special treat. My Aunt would eat her lollipop quickly, worrying that her little sister would want a bite. My Mom would have no concern for anything other than her own treat. She would slowly lick, lick, lick, enjoying each prolonged flavor with no worry over how long the sucker would last or when she might get another. Guess who ended up the happiest? I guess sometimes it comes down to worry and anxiety. You’re unhappy with the way things are. You’ve prayed about it, so why hasn’t a resolution come yet? All you see is the unsatisfactory situation. You become anxious and discontent in the current circumstance. You worry what will come next, rather than embracing what’s right in front of you.
Matthew 6:28 (AMP)
And why should you be anxious about clothes? Consider the lilies of the field and learn thoroughly how they grow; they neither toil nor spin.
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven.
I want to love the now, even the hard parts. I want to go to bed when I’m supposed to, without complaint. I don’t want my picture taken with a scowl on my face. I don’t want to toil and spin. I want to believe there’s a time for everything and a season for every activity. I don’t want to miss the joy because I’m weighted down by uncertainty. I want to lick and lick and lick, enjoying every flavor available for my palate.
That is all 🙂