Thursday, March 18, 2010

God Rocks (part one)

Brenda was out of town this week, so I had the wonderful blessing of speaking to the mommies in Moms & More. My blog mission originally was to take eight pages of speaking notes and condense them into something blog worthy. Somewhere about halfway through, I decided it needed to be split into two parts. Also, it’s quite a challenge to put down in written words what I try to communicate in person because I’m such a big fan of visual aids. (Yep. I’m a total visual learner and therefore a total visual teacher.) I’ll try to get some pictures in here so all you readers can have as close to the on site experience as possible. Here we go with part one....

Do you like the beach? Well, duh, is there anyone who doesn’t like the beach? It’s a pretty universal good thing. You get to feel warm sand between your toes, and enjoy a soft breeze as you let the sun bake you. Imagine the gorgeous sunset. Are you getting that beautiful, relaxing mental picture?

But, here’s the thing. You know how a lot of that sand comes home with you? Ugh. The wonderful, warm sand that you wiggled your toes in won’t come out. It’s starting to scratch. Does anyone enjoy it when the sand somehow gets in your swimming suit and wedges in your butt crack? And then when you have to go to the bathroom, the toilet paper becomes sand paper? The beach has turned on you.

I’m wondering if you thought that motherhood was going to be a day at the beach. Maybe you thought you’d have two kids…one boy, one girl. You figured it would be fun. You’d do all this great stuff together. You know, quality family time. And you thought if you were firm and consistent, the children would be wonderful, well behaved little darlings.

That was your plan. Maybe that’s your life. I’d be very surprised though. Not many of us can make it from infancy to independence without a good amount of frustration along the way. So, how is your day at the beach coming along?

I’ve found that the sandy bothersome things of motherhood can become incredibly irritating after a while. It’s the little stuff that can drive you bonkers. I've heard it said that raising children is like being pecked to death by chickens...

- Another diaper.
- Another feeding.
-Another no sleeping nap.
-Another tantrum.
-Mom, can you explain this homework to me…?
-Mom, I need seven dollars for the field trip…and the form filled out….
-Mom, will you pick up red pens at the store for tomorrow…?
-Mom, can I have Susie sleep over…?
-Mom, have you seen my shoes…?
-(& my all time fave) Mom, I’m bored!

You’re trying to do your best at the mom thing and you’re still trying to juggle everything else. We do have a life outside of our children, don’t we? I know sometimes it doesn’t seem like it. But, Mommy just isn’t the only job we have. Some of you work outside the home full time or part time. Most of us have the not-so-small WIFE job. And of course, there is the runner of the home. This often includes, chef, taxi driver, teacher, accountant, maid….etc. (you get the picture.)When there is one little thing on top of another little thing, life can get overwhelming. One grain of sand is irritating if it gets in your eye. But, if you’re out in a sandstorm (Which, generally, I don’t think we worry too much about in central Illinois.) It’s going to hurt. And become frustrating. Can you imagine juggling sand?

Think about that beach again. Did you ever stand at the water’s edge and let the waves keep washing sand over your feet? When they get buried deep enough, it’s hard to move. Sometimes it’s just too much. Maybe you’ve let someone bury you in the sand. It gets heavy after a while. (Pssst...that's my Joshie on the left goofing around after a good sand burial. And that's my Alex on the right letting his mother take crazy pictures.)

Maybe your problems are bigger than sand. You’re stuck in gravel. I’ve been spinning my wheels in gravel before. For me these are the times of never ending sickness in our house. Another case of strep. An ear infection. Middle of the night vomiting. My kids pass this stuff back and forth all winter long. Sometimes they even share with me.

Or maybe you’re standing on sharp rocks. Someone in your house needs surgery. Your finances aren’t what you’d like them to be. There may be tension and stress in your home. Those rocks are definitely bigger than sand and gravel.

I actually hesitated to even give examples for these. Everyone has their own problems and everyone is equipped differently to deal with them. We each have our own unique personalities and coping mechanisms. We’re different. I wouldn’t want to judge a person by the size that I think their rocks are.

A friend posted the following story on Facebook recently. Since I was stirring around ideas about being buried under burdens, I read it at just the right time! Just imagine sand and gravel and rocks in place of the dirt in this tall tale.

The Donkey and the Well

One day a farmer's donkey fell down into a well.

The animal cried piteously for hours as the farmer tried to figure out what to do. Finally, he decided the animal was old, and the well needed to be covered up anyway; it just wasn't worth it to retrieve the donkey.

He invited all his neighbors to come over and help him. They all grabbed a shovel and began to shovel dirt into the well. At first, the donkey realized what was happening and cried horribly.

Then, to everyone's amazement he quieted down. A few shovel loads later, the farmer finally looked down the well. He was astonished at what he saw. With each shovel of dirt that hit his back, the donkey was doing something amazing. He would shake it off and take a step up.

As the farmer's neighbors continued to shovel dirt on top of the animal, he would shake it off and take a step up. Pretty soon, everyone was amazed as the donkey stepped up over the edge of the well and happily trotted off!


Life is going to shovel dirt on you, all kinds of dirt. The trick to getting out of the well is to shake it off and take a step up.

Each of our troubles is a stepping-stone.

We can get out of the deepest wells just by not stopping, never giving up!

Shake it off and take a step up.

The Lord showed me these fabulous verses.
Let Him lift you up today.
(And...stay tuned for part two!)

I waited patiently for the LORD; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. Psalm 40:1-2

1 comment:

  1. Oh how I miss you Beth!! Thanks for the encouragement - it was well timed :) I miss the M&M group a lot - nothing quite like it here that I have found. Can't wait to read part 2.