Have you spent your summer looking for the perfect curriculum? The perfect Chore Chart, meal planner or even trying to find the perfect schedule for your family. You know the schedule that is planned down to the millisecond so that you can fit everything into your life? Are you exhausted and school has not even begun? Is it your goal to start off each day with a few minutes of quiet time with the Lord? Do you know that for many families that is the secret to their success? It’s true. Time and time again I hear, “when I miss my morning time with the Lord, the day just doesn’t fly right.” For me, missing my time in the morning usually ends in a bad attitude, an impatient mom, and then transfers over to inpatient irritable children, who then irritate me more and by the time lunch comes, we are all ready to be away from each other.
It was on one of these occasions that I sat down and prayed. (Okay, I was sobbing in my room and decided it was time to ask the Lord what to do) I remembered that it had been a long time since I sat down in the morning hours and read my bible and prayed. Surely Lord, that can’t be the answer to my kids bad attitudes, the dog puking, the computer breaking down and the fact that my laundry could start a riot any day. But yes, was the answer I kept hearing, over and over. Wow, talk about being kicked when you’re down. Here my plate was full and overflowing and I knew the Lord wanted to me to add yet another thing to my morning. I’m such a failure Lord, how can you even stand me. I should have known all along that my time with you is far more precious then checking emails, or facebook. I should have known that seeking you first would give me the strength to deal with all that was ahead of me. I’m such an unworthy child lord.
I grab my bible and decide I should start then and now. I opened up the bible and let it fall where ever it did. After all I hadn’t been reading it anywhere in particular so anywhere was a good place to start. I began reading…The caption above the chapter read (Comfort for God’s People) I’ll start there. As I was reading Isaiah chapter 40 I began to sob again when I hit verse 11. “He will tend his flock like a shepherd, he will gather the lambs in his arms, he will carry them in his bosom, and gently lead those that are with young. Imagine the relief I began to feel. The Lord is so good to us. Here I am ready to call it quits, reaming myself for not putting God first in my life, angry that I have failed at everything I but my hand to do, and yet, this verse, He will gently lead those that are with young. ( have you ever saw a mother sheep, mother bear, mother lion with their young. Usually they are trying to lie down and rest while the little cub is running over the top of them, biting their tails, swiping their eyes and flipping over mom to get to each other. Have any of you felt that way? The Lord knows raising children is tough. He knows we are only human, weary, exhausted and yet trying so hard to follow the Shepherd. He knows we fail daily, and yet here He is telling us that he will gently lead those who are with young. Gently, that was the word that got me. I envision the Lord gently reminding me about my devotions. Gently reminding me that my children’s character is more important then that day’s math assignment. Gently holding me when I begin to crumble under the day’s weight. And, then he gathers the lambs in his arms and carry’s them. He truly cares about our children, dare I say, more then we do. He will teach them what we can’t. As I continue reading Isaiah 40, I come to verses 28 and 29. He does not faint or grow weary, his understanding is unsearchable, he gives power to the faint and to him who has no might he increases their strength. I laid there on my bed crying, Lord, I have no more might. I need you to increase my strength.
I believe that I sat on my bed that day for about a half hour. I have no idea what my kids were doing, because I had left in such a fury. (They were cleaning the house) But, these verses became my theme for the year. He gently leads those that are with young, and he gives strength to those who have no might.
The most important thing this year for you and for your family is remembering where your strength comes from. Envision the Lord leading you gently, knowing you will make mistakes, knowing you’re not perfect, your curriculum will never be perfect, your house will never be perfect and no matter how hard you try your children will never be perfect.