Warning: The following post is somewhat emotional. I hesitated to post it due to my current pregnant hormonal state, but have decided to go ahead, as it seems to be an accurate reflection. Friends, please don't tell me I am being too hard on myself. Just pray for me, ok?
There are those who seem to have it all together in their families. I read their articles and their blogs and am inspired and encouraged. However, when I reenter my own little world I realize that my life is different. I don't always have it together. My kids don't always sit still and quiet in church. My attitude is less than perfect far too often. There is bickering in my home and much frustration at times. Sometimes I think of the 3 years that we have been working to train properly and have a better attitude and be rightly related to each other and I think "I really ought to have all these kinks worked out by now"! And I just want to give up.
It's true. I really ought to have things in a better state by now. The ultimate blame for a less than happy and peaceful household will always fall upon parental shoulders. For children will mimic the behavior of those around them. If I fly off the handle and become easily frustrated at times, then the children will of course have the same tendency. If I have neglected to effectively train whining out of my older child, then inevitably the younger ones (though better trained) will start to mimic that older sibling's behavior. And it is hard to play catch-up when there are a lot of children involved and bad habits have formed.
But I am convinced more than ever that I am doing the right thing, and I know that my surety must be supernatural (otherwise I would have given up a long time ago). I know that giving up would only be giving my children over to their flesh and the devil. I know that if I lay down my head in despair I would be allowing another victory which is unthinkable.
Right now it is winter in my heart. Somehow my life is a cycle which I can track. I go through seasons of winter, just like the world around me. And seasons of summer, where my growth causes my ever smiling face to be turned constantly toward the Son (O how I long for that glorious moment!). At one point I thought that my winters were lessening and my summers lengthening and the Christian life progressed to an eventual endless summer. Ahhhh, Lord let it be so!
There is also hope in my heart right now. I am longing for a revival in my heart. These are some of the prayers I always pray for my kids at night: "Grant them a willing spirit"; "Give them a revelation of Jesus Christ"; "Give them wisdom to make good decisions"; "Give them a vision for purity and holiness in their lives"; "Let Christ dwell in their hearts BY FAITH, that they would be rooted and grounded in love, that they together with all of the saints may be able to grasp how long and wide and high and deep is the love of Christ and to know this love that passeth knowledge that they might be filled to the measure with all of the fullness of God."; "Lord change me into a better Mommy for my children."
Lately I have prayed weeping at times, and asked them to pray the same prayers for me. They know me, my children. They know that I am a Mommy who is far from perfect. But they also know that I will always admit when I am wrong and apologize. We always look one another in the eye when confessing and say: "I'm sorry ____. It was wrong to _____. Will you forgive me?" (Okay, so we do have some good habits too :-))
And "I wait I wait for the Lord, my soul waits. And in His word will I hope." For surely they that sew in tears will reap in joy!