I’m pretty sure I’ve never been as stretched as in this season of mothering six.
Today, in a short window of time, someone stepped in dog poo, another someone spilled his plate on the floor (twice), my helper needed instructions, the baby was crying incessantly, a toddler was having meltdown, I needed to eat, and several more things I can’t remember.
After things had settled down I went outside to be completely alone and just breathe. Just breathe.
I have a theme for this new season. “Don’t rush… Be content… Smile.”
I can’t say I’m very good at it, but there it is to help set my focus. If I could just do those 3 things, I think I would be hitting the priorities.
This year I’ve been learning about thanks and joy on a new level. During my last trimester of pregnancy, I would wake up and think, “Oh Lord, help me.” Every day it was a challenge just to get up and move, to face the demands of the day. I realized I was prone to smile less during this time. I began thinking to myself, “If I want to grow up into a radiant old lady full of thanks and joy (and I do!) then this hard season is one of my training grounds, like a level I need to pass. I’ve got to smile deliberately today and be grateful!”
I’ve begun to realize that radiance and thanks and joy and patience and all the other good qualities can only come about by being forged. Life gives us hard seasons when it’s easy to wish the days away. Rejoicing and being thankful are like keys for passing the tests and gaining inner treasures we didn’t have before.
I often stumble and fall and complain more than I should. But I am slowly learning to look at my difficulties in a new light: that of growing rich. God wants me to be content right where I am, to smile a lot, and to overcome by cultivating a grateful heart. And I want it too.
I like this quote by Deitrich Bonhoeffer:
“In ordinary life, we hardly realize that we receive a great deal more than we give, and that it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.”
Let’s grow rich together. Especially through our trials.