I started my “Encouragement from Katie” blogsite a little over 4 months ago. I have written some stories detailing the times when I have relied on God’s strength and guidance in my parenting, and that is the purpose of this blog—to encourage young moms to look to God for the answers and strength in their mothering role. However, there were times when I did not do this. There were times I was angry, frustrated, fearful, or anxious and I acted out those emotions. I remember a time when I expressed fear, and then anger, in the space of a heartbeat.
At the time, I was a mom with just 4 children (I would have a fifth- 7 years later); their ages were: 8 years, 4 years, 3 years and 11 months old. It was time for our church’s VBS and I was helping with it. I dropped off my 11-month-old with a friend, who also had an 11-month old baby. She watched our babies while I took the 3 older children to VBS. At the end of VBS, I loaded up the children in our mini van and ran back in the church to grab something I had forgotten. Then— I came back out to the van, got in and drove off. I parked at my friend’s home and went in to get my baby. I came back out and noticed that my four-year-old was not in the van. I thought he had gotten out and was wandering around the neighborhood. I started calling for him, yelling his name one minute, and crying his name in the next.
My friend’s husband looked at me in amazement—I seemed like a woman gone berserk—yelling, then crying, then yelling, then crying. I was demanding that we call the police and the fire department. He said, “Why don’t we call the church first, maybe he’s at the church?” “No”, I snapped back, “I put him in the van, he must have gotten out at your house, and he’s wandering around the neighborhood.”
“Well”, he said, “let’s just call the church first.” Eventually, I agreed, and we called the church. Yes, my child was at the church. He had gotten out to use the bathroom, and I had not noticed when I got into the van. Even now, when I remember that story, my heart starts pounding and the adrenaline starts rushing through my body at the terror I experienced when I thought my child was lost.
Why do I recount this story? Because—this is what life is like isn’t it? Life is going along, and then something that we don’t expect happens—and how do we react? I don’t and haven’t always reacted well. The first thing I thought of, in the situation I just recounted, wasn’t God; I did not call out to Him to save my child. I tried to deal with the situation myself—and in relying on my own resources—I vacillated between terror and anger.
Perhaps, you can relate. Perhaps you too, try to deal with your life situations with your own resources, not turning to the Lord.
I have just recounted one story, yet, over the past 27 years of being a mother—my life is filled with many stories, many moments.
I have seen that being a mother has taken everything I have and more. It has brought out my worst self, and my best self. Like most mothers—I would willingly lay down my life for my children—-yet get annoyed with them for the smallest of offenses.
Fortunately, I have a Father who is the most patient of teachers, and He continues to give me lessons on how to love, until I learn. He is the most consistent, faithful, love-motivated teacher there is. His goal—to make me Holy, (whole), like Him. I came to Him broken, and He—He is fixing me. He is teaching me to love, like He loves.
It does not happen overnight, or in a month or in years—it takes a lifetime—it takes believing God and acting out what He shows me to do.
Just recently, I had another incident where I reacted from emotion. I thought I was beyond doing such things, but I am never beyond those things, because I will always need God. Whenever I think, “I’ve got this.” Life will throw me a curve-ball, and I will realize once again, “No I don’t have this, and God, please—HELP!!
Being a mom, has taught me how amazing God’s grace truly is, as I am continually leaning into Him to just take the next step, when my strength has given out. If that’s what you are learning as well—you are in a good place—you are in your Father’s hands—the safest place to be.
So Be Encouraged!!