For Zachary's math lesson one day he was supposed to look at pictures of different objects and then determine whether it would be better to use a ruler or a yardstick to measure. He asked me how big a yardstick was and since we had just gone over that a couple of days before, I told him to go back in his book and look it up. While he was looking, I went to go do a lesson with Tori. All of the sudden I see Zachary get up and walk outside. He returned a few minutes later holding a "stick from the yard"! He looked at me with a very confused face and said, "But I still don't know how big it is." After picking my head up out of my hands, we went back through the book to remind him what a yardstick was. Zachary had the answer to his question in his math book, but because he was so sure he knew already, he missed it. I wonder how many times the Lord feels the same way about me. How many times have I searched for answers to how to be the mother that I should be, all the time missing the answer in The Book. Being a mother is a difficult, yet rewarding job. It takes sacrifice to unconditionally love someone else. I've tried many things to get my children to behave or listen. There are so many books written with great advice, but I'm missing the point. What does loving unconditionally look like?
"Love is patient, love is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails." 1 Cor. 13:4-8a.
When I look at that list, I'm overwhelmed by my inability to love my children as I should. So what's a mother to do?
The answer is found in John 15:5-7, "I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. If anyone doesn not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire and they are burned. If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you."
What is the fruit I will bear if I abide in Jesus?
"The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control" Gal. 5:22
In our culture today I'm bombarded with the idea that if I want to be a good mother, I need to make sure I have plenty of "me" time. What I really need though is "Him" time. Don't get me wrong, going out with friends and doing girl things is a lot of fun. I just can't depend on a mani/pedi to refill me and refresh me. It may be fun at the time, but when I return, everything I left is still there. The only thing that will truly refresh and refill my spirit is to abide in the Lord. That kind of refreshment doesn't end.