Mommin’ ain’t easy.
Have you ever read a truer sentence? Parenthood, in general, is not for the faint of heart. It’s scary and full of plot twists and just when I think I have it figured out, I’m pretty sure my children organize a clandestine meeting and devise ways to keep me on my toes.
And while there’s nothing easy about it, I consider it one of my highest honors here on Earth. To be trusted with raising and training the next generation. To teach them what a lifestyle of surrendered obedience and devotion to the Lord looks like. To instill inside of them a healthy value for repentance and humility through example. If I ever allow myself to actually feel the weight of such a calling, it makes my chest constrict and my breathing hitch with every thought of, “how?”
There was one day, a year and a half ago, that I was standing in my temporary bedroom getting ready for church…my life was in pieces…my future unknown at best…and I was hit with the overwhelming thought of this, “How do I contend in prayer for all the things that need contending?” When I took inventory of my every prayer request: children, finances, housing, provision, relationships… I knew that there was no way I could give each subject the attention it deserved. And with the heaviness of that revelation, I sank down into the carpet, head in hands and hopelessness weaving her way into every thought. But then the still, small voice of God whispered, “Contend for Me and I will contend for the rest.”
And it rang with so much truth that I couldn’t help but trust Him. I could breathe again. Since then, life has evened out some. The scattered pieces have been whittled and sanded into new shapes that are slowly finding they’re way back together. And through it all, I’ve had the overwhelming joy to watch the truth of Matthew 6:33 come into fruition right before my eyes.
Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.Matthew 6:33 NLT
A village of people
I don’t know why we are so afraid to ask for help sometimes. I don’t know why looking to another makes us feel weak or insufficient. For a long time, I was under the impression that I could do it all by myself. But somewhere along the way, in His perfect timing and goodness, God has shown me the value of being planted in this family of believers. While my only job was to keep my eyes fixed and focused on Him, He was busy surrounding me with a village of people who pour into me and my kids in every way possible.
When the widow in 2 Kings chapter 4 was begging Elisha for help, His instruction to her in verse 3 was to go to her friends and neighbors and borrow jars. And not just a few. I am fully convinced that God longs for us to be so intertwined with one another, that we get to be instrumental in each other’s breakthroughs. I believe that God wants us to rely on Him, but to also find a place of vulnerability that allows others to see our weak places and maybe even fortify them. To allow the Body of Christ to actually be the Body of Christ…His hands and feet, His mouthpiece, His pat on the back or shoulder to cry on.
I used to be afraid that my children would operate at a deficit with only me as their full-time parent. But when I look around me, my vision is filled with this beautiful village of diverse individuals who all add something unique to our lives. And I’m so very thankful that my hands are not the only ones raising my children. Because mommin’ ain’t easy. But when He is my first seek, I find myself resting in the ease of His faithfulness…covered by His goodness…and surrounded with the many arms that make light a heavy load.