It’s time for another Five Minute Friday! I fully intended to blog more this week, but it didn’t happen. And how I wanted to edit this week, friends! But here it is, my five minutes on the word of the week: remember.
Sweet child of mine, now that you are two I find myself looking back, remembering those early days with you. The memories already aren’t as clear as they once were, and so I must commit them to permanence with these feeble words. When I held you in my arms that first time, in the early morning hours of March 4, your tiny body felt light, almost nothing, and yet the weight of what I was becoming—mother–was heavy upon me. Though I had longed to be your mother, waited years and those anxious nine months, that moment when I held you surprised me. I did not feel immediately transformed. I did not feel suddenly graced with wisdom. But oh, how I felt love! How I felt amazed at the wonder and love of God, smiling down on me through your little face.
In the weeks that would come, weeks of little sleep and lots of crying (on both our parts!), I spent more time questioning than trusting, more time worried than at peace, and I wish I could take it all back and do it all over. I would tell myself to soak in those early moments, frustrating and difficult and exhausting as they were, and I would tell myself that it does get better. That even though motherhood did not come to me all at once in a blaze of glory, it has come in quieter ways, in quieter moments: in the stillness of having your head snuggled up near mine, of hearing your breath mingle with mine, of feeling your hands lovingly touch mine. Being your mother has been the hardest thing I have ever done, but oh, how thankful I am for the hard things, for in them I find out who I truly am. WHOSE I truly am. And when you are older and welcoming your first little one, I pray that knowledge finds you as well.
Once again, I am linking up with Lisa-Jo Baker
and Five Minute Friday
. It’s simple: write for 5 minutes on the word of the week, no editing, no overthinking. It could be the best 5 minutes you spend writing all week. Give it a try!
There’s something a bit ironic about the fact that I am writing about rest at 10:30 at night, isn’t there? But write I must. The idea of rest is one I think about often. I am tired a lot, and part of that tired is a physical tired, the kind that comes at the end of a long day, but some of it is a different kind of tired altogether, the kind that I can’t solve with a nap. In the quiet moments of the day, what I most want is rest from the crazy thoughts in my head, the voice that tells me I am not good enough or pretty enough or skinny enough, fill-in-the-blank enough. I want rest from the endless ferris wheel of emotions, the doubt and frustration over my eating habits and rest from fighting temptation at every turn. I want rest from feeling inferior to stay-at-home moms, rest from worrying about things that don’t matter, rest from the nagging insecurities I can’t seem to put to bed. So I work and I distract myself and I surf the internet, thinking that if I just stay busy I won’t have to think about all of these things. I won’t have to face the unrest in my soul. But eventually, something, or rather Someone, stops me, and I hear that still small voice whisper to me, “Come to me, you who are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Ah yes, that’s right. His yoke is easy, His burden light. Rest is mine for the taking.
Do you have trouble resting, whether it’s physical rest or spiritual rest?
I haven’t participated in Five Minute Friday
for a while, but this week’s word immediately grabbed me. In case you don’t know, Five Minute Friday
is hosted by Lisa-Jo Baker
, and all you do is take 5 minutes and write on the word of the week. Five minutes-no editing, no second-guessing. Just writing. Here’s my five minutes on this week’s word: look.
* * * *
As I drove home from work for lunch just minutes ago, my mind was in a fog. It’s been a hard week. I haven’t felt well or slept all that well, and I have thoughts weighing me down, threatening to steal my joy. I have prayed more than once that the Lord would show Himself to me, that I would know He is here with me.
With my attention minimally focused on the road, the landmarks passed by in a blur. I rounded a bend in the road, and then all of a sudden my vision was confronted with a shock of red, yellow, and orange in vibrant display, tucked in the midst of green. The beauty of it caused me to inhale sharply, and I wanted to stop my car and look, just feast my eyes on the splendor that I wasn’t even looking for but that had found me. I let the image of those autumnal hues dance before my eyes long after I had left the real thing behind, and it brought a smile to my lips and prayer of gratitude from my heart.
It’s almost as though the Lord was reaching down to whisper in my ear and saying, “Keep looking, dear one. Sometimes joy is right around the corner.”
May the Lord grant me vision that allows me to truly see Him, to truly know Him. Always.
I’m linking up with Lisa-Jo’s Five Minute Friday, and I couldn’t have picked a better word to lead me to some important realizations. This week’s word: focus.
* * * * *
I am terribly nearsighted. Yesterday I had my yearly eye exam and had to wait a few minutes, without my contacts in, in the exam room before the doctor came to examine my eyes. The letters on the wall were a complete blur, but when I held my phone up, everything was in perfect focus. If I hadn’t seen the fuzzy letters on the wall, I wouldn’t even know by looking at my phone that anything was wrong. As far as I could tell close up, my vision was perfect.
But like so many things in life, my vision is far from perfect. The same goes for my focus. After my post on Tuesday
, I’ve done a lot of thinking, and I think the realization I’ve come to is that I’m incredibly self-absorbed. It’s no surprise that I am tired of thinking about weight loss and food because both of those things? They’re all about me.
If you look in the Bible, you won’t find any verses that talk about spending all of your time thinking about yourself. You won’t find any that exhort the reader to spend countless hours devoted to personal neuroses. What you will find are verses that urge followers of Christ (of which I am one, though ever so poor an example) to be joyful always, to pray continually, to give thanks in all circumstances, to think of others as higher than themselves, to seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, to love their neighbors as themselves. I look in God’s love letter to me and am reminded to count everything as loss except the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. When I think on these things, when I live a life that radiates these truths, what room is left over for thoughts of me? None whatsoever. And that is just how it should be.
What I am coming to realize is that my view of Christ has become blurry because my view of myself remains in constant focus.
Turns out I am nearsighted in more ways than one.
* * * * *
I invite you to join in the challenge of writing for just five minutes this Friday. Who knows what will come of it?