Obedience is something we teach our children. We begin with God’s word, the Ten Commandments and the various scripture he has given us to guide our children. They are words filled with promises and consequences.
Yet, I often wonder when this heart, this Mama’s heart that often tires of being obedient will heed the words being spoken.
Recently, I went on a trip with some friends to a conference. It is not something I do often. I can’t remember the last time I left my family alone for any given amount of time. Well, other than the days I sat at my Mother’s bedside as she took her last breaths.
I enjoy being here, next to them, growing with them and watching God capture their hearts a little more each day as he uses this Mama, this broken vessel to raise these beautiful gifts he has granted this world.
Before I returned from the conference I called home, longing to hear my family’s voices and the promise of a beautiful welcome home and a night of quiet, sitting and sharing with my family.
Much to my surprise, my family thought I would be arriving late in the evening and had invited two families over at the very time I would be arriving.
This is not what a tired mama longing for the arms of her family wanted to hear.
I fought back the feelings that were colliding in my heart. Feelings of anger, despair and exhaustion. I thought about Jesus, his walk up that road with the cross on his back and knew that I had no right to complain.
I sat and I prayed and I shared with the sweet sisters in my room that I needed their prayers. I needed a heart of submission, of love and one seeking to serve.
I woke well before the sun to news of the earthquake on the west coast of Canada and the looming storm of Sarah….and prayed. I was in the path of the storm and needed to return home. I was not alone in this ‘need’. Other women were anxious to get home before the storm hit.
My travels were easy. No true problems hampered my way. I arrived home before my family, unpacked and took a quick nap – followed by prayers.
I wanted to be a hostess with doors open and loving arms to hug those entering our home.
That afternoon, I sat with friends. We laughed, giggled and cried a little. We enjoyed two meals together. My heart grew. I was exhausted and my flesh had desired rest. My Father had spoken to my husband and they knew what was better for me. An afternoon of true fellowship, children laughing, Fathers guiding and teaching…and love growing.
Those moments taught me that the beauty of being a Mom is not found in the moments of rest. It’s found in the moments of fellowship and serving. It’s found when the flesh feels it can no longer carry on, but the strength of the Lord overwhelms the body and soul.
The beauty of being a Mama is found in the laughter, as children run and play and beg for just five more minutes. It’s found in rosy cheeks and bowls that seem to overflow. How we fed 16 people two meals and had left overs is beyond me. My kitchen remained spotless and the silverware ran out just as the last plate/bowl of food was served.
And me? Well, I found that the exhaustion I wanted to succumb to was not to dissipated.
I learned the meaning of submission, obedience and strength….all found at the cross with sisters praying for this empty vessel to pour out the only thing it could – the love of Jesus.
My heart was opened and set free from a bondage I did not know I was captive to. I felt as though I was among the Prisoners set free….
About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them, and suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken. And immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone’s bonds were unfastened. Acts 16:25-26
When I relinquished my own desire to control to have the strength and gave into the one who had all strength, I found a freedom I never knew existed. In the angst of worry and exhaustion, I had been set free.
Have you discovered the beauty of fellowship?