Jehovah was not in the wind. And after the wind, an earthquake: Jehovah was not in the earthquake.
And after the earthquake, a fire: Jehovah was not in the fire. And after the fire, a soft gentle voice. (1Kings 19:11-12)

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Intentional Motherhood: When You Need to Go Back to the Beginning

I should have called them in earlier.

We had a piano recital to go to and they were outside playing in the snow. I wanted them to get some fresh air and exercise and to be distracted from the nerves that were already jittering on the inside.

I waited a little too long to call them in to grab a small bite to eat, change out of their play clothes, brush their teeth, and smooth out their hair.

Now there was less than an hour and we were racing against time.

The Wild Horseman was ready to go, but we needed to pick up the pace if we were going to arrive in decent time.

Halfway through the recital, I squeeze her hand and she walks up to take her place at the grand piano.

She announces her piece, and, oh, her nerves, I wish I could just smooth them out for her just as she smoothed out her blond hair back into a ponytail.

She starts The Wild Horseman off, but falters, fumbles, her fingers trip and are trying to find their way on the keyboard. I am feeling her pain. She knows she has to keep on going. Her teacher has told her that many times: 'when you are performing you just keep going . . . ' She does this, but it is not getting any easier.

Her teacher graciously calls out to her, "Would you like to start over?"


She takes a deep breath and goes back to the beginning and performs her song, her fingers finding their notes this time.

A few students later, the very same thing is called out.

No, she is not the only one.

Although some are natural performers and never seem to stumble when they are put on stage for all the world to see, the truth is we all need this calling out in grace:

"Would you like to start over?"

Oh, the amazing grace, to come to this place. To see our own shortcomings and know the truth.

We need this grace in our lives.

We need this grace in our life as a mother.

And when we go back to the beginning we see how we were created.
"So God created man in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.
And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth . . . " 

We have been created in the image and after the likeness of God!

God created man to reveal to the universe His glory, His own perfection.

One of the attributes of God is that God is love.

"As the Loving One, He is the fountain of life. As the Living One, He is the fountain of love."

And as we have been created in the image of God, our 'whole life may be a life of love.'

God originally created the family in order than mankind would demonstrate the same love that reigns in heaven.

"In the home on earth . . .  God wanted to reflect the love of the Father's home in heaven."
"The establishment of a home of love like that in heaven was to have been the highest privilege of man.
However, sin came in and brought man's ruin."

Sin distorted what God originally planned.

But, God called out in grace, and 'what sin destroys, grace restores!'

Not only in creation, but in salvation, we have become children of God and he has lavished His love on us.
"See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God" 
He has called out in grace. I have seen that I need to repent, and turn from sin, and God has redeemed my life and restored it to what He originally designed.

"For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God," 

 And He calls out in grace, willing to redeem my life as a mother.

I see my own shortcomings and I see the need for grace, to start again in order to move forward

I do not need to continue in the power of fear, but have been 'given a spirit of power and love and self-discipline.'

This love needs to reign in our home. If I am mother to my children and am not pouring out my life to them in love, is anything I do worth anything?

How do I speak to my children? With love? Or are my words just a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal? 

Does my understanding and knowledge amount to anything? Do my actions accomplish anything? 

Nothing, if I do not have love!

The love chapter, 1 Corinthians 13, says it clearly: the greatest is love.

I need to give of myself in a life of love. And yet, I can only do this by His power.
"Look to God as the author of your family life and count on Him to give you all that is needed to make it what it should be . . . As you  trust in His adoring love, the assurance will grow that He will enable you to make your home the bright reflection of His own."

A Mother's Prayer
"Lord God, You have made me a [mother] and given me a child of my own. I humbly confess that the perfect love and joy of heaven has not been reflected in my home. I have failed to understand my calling as a [mother]. Father, forgive me. I ask you to guide me and to help me in the study of Your Holy Word. Help me to realize your purposes for me as a [mother]. Teach me to know you as the Perfect Father. As I study Your example as the divine Parent, make me to be a true [mother] to my child. Let your love and blessing rest on our home.


{all quotations taken directly from 'Raising Your Child for Christ' by Andrew Murray, unless otherwise noted}

IMG_2469-sz-250There's a little book, 'Raising Your Children for Christ' by Andrew Murray, on my shelf that I keep bringing down and leafing through and, Lord willing, on Wednesdays I hope to share snippets of my gleanings from it.

I don't claim to know all the answers. I need to dig deeper so that I can be even more equipped to be the mother that God intended. Andrew Murray wrote from the perspective of both the Father and the Mother, but I will be writing from my perspective as a Mother. I am so thankful that this task of raising our children has not been given to me alone.

Is there something in your life that makes mothering hard?

Join me on this journey? It is not a list of rules and how-to's but rather a chance to look into your own life and heart and be challenged to live a life wholeheartedly devoted to the Lord

For the first post in this series on Intentional Motherhood you can find it here.

For all posts in this series you can read them here.

Thank you for your comments. They are an encouragement to me.

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