my days have been a blur. With so many full, carefully planned days, long lists of things to get crossed off before collapsing into bed at night... I've got to confess something. I've been briefly glancing at the Lord's table.. not stopping long enough to sit down... and just grabbing a vitamin's worth of Him lately.
Vitamins... they are good. They are full of good things you need, but you can't exist on them for long. They won't sustain you when the hunger pains hit, you know? This occurred to me the other morning as I rushed through my devotional, and took my "vitamin route" rather than sitting and savoring a meal of His word, that I was spiritually starving myself. Yesterday, I felt broken by this realization because when you've got a full plate of activity and chaos and kiddos melting down facing you, the best thing you can do for yourself is stop, settle your heart, and bask in Him for a while. I know this of course. I really do. I mean, it makes the entire day smooth out before your feet and you remember how to breathe through any of the crazy moments that will certainly come your way. So how did I forget this truth that I knew?
Jeremiah 29:12-14 "Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you, declares the Lord, and I will restore your fortunes and gather you from all the nations and all the places where I have driven you, declares the Lord, and I will bring you back to the place from which I sent you into exile."
I had been sustained. I didn't know what my day was to hold when I awoke that morning but God did, and He knew I would need to feast on His strength in order to get through it. (And in truth, don't we always need that?) I don't always heed His whispers to stop and be with Him in the midst of chaos... but it's like the feeling after a great workout. You sure feel glad you spent the time after because it changes your whole day. Wish I didn't ever forget that part.
I have to say this too, because girlfriend,
if you're reading this and feeling frustrated because you
can't escape the madness in your schedule to bask in His presence, this
isn't really about how much time you spend. And let me just assure you, that I get it.
When I was a younger mama with two little ones in diapers, I was lucky
to squeeze in five minutes of uninterrupted thought! And oh the guilt I
felt, knowing I "should" take more time on a consistent basis. If
that's at all where you find yourself because you work full time, or
your schedule is nuts or you have babies that demand your constant
attention, I just want to encourage you. Kids grow, schedules change,
routines vary and some days are more streamlined than others for all of
us. I truly believe looking back a bit, that God was right there beside
me, feeding me morsels of Himself to carry me as I dragged my
sleep-deprived self through some exhausting days of being touched by
needy, small hands all day. Sometimes it was as simple as His words in a
song on the radio as I drove across town with sticky-fingered little
ones buckled into car seats on our way to Target.
Don't let yourself
get caught up in the number of minutes you spend, just do your best to
give Him your full attention when you do have five minutes to
concentrate on Him, even if it's while you are locked in a bathroom by yourself. He knows
your schedule and heart better than you do, and I think He has a very
soft spot in His heart for us exhausted women (and mamas too) with precious
little time. Isaiah 40:11 says, "He will take care of his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs together and carry them in his arms; he will gently lead their mothers.'
Don't you love that? He will care for us because we are all his lambs.
(P.S. my desk never looks this good in real life. I staged it all cute for my shop photos
of the wrapped canvases I will be selling when I reopen February 5th. I
just wanted you to know...Keeping it real over here!)