The days go by fast-slow.
Each day, a dear friend asks me what I’m doing on that day. And every day I say the same thing. Because it’s totally true.
It’s kind of embarrassing. I tend to look at my life as lame. Boring. Filled with the mundane sameness that marks the daily life of a mom. Of a wife. As she who mostly stays at home. Long ago, we learned that our family functions best when I stay home rather than work a full time gig. I’m blessed to minister to our church family with a part time music ministry. For me, it’s the best of both worlds. A bit of a stigma (what do you DO, you know…OUTSIDE the home….), but it works.
And still….there’s a restlessness at times. And sometimes I wonder if God sees me. Because life isn’t quite what I thought it would be.
Okay. Let’s call it what it really is. My life looks absolutely nothing like I thought it would.
There are five pairs of shoes in my living room. Discarded gym clothes on the kitchen floor. A little girl’s school papers from first AND second grade in the front room. Heaps of them. Because she can’t part with them. And yes, she just started THIRD grade a week ago. More piano books than I can count and multiple instruments strewn around. Items from my new ministry, waiting for their forever home, pushed aside by an eager helper creating another pile. The laundry will never be caught up. The kitchen table never seems clear yet I’m always clearing it off. The bathrooms have been neglected for too long. The checkbook isn’t balanced. Even the cat helps. He swiped someone’s prewrap and someone else’s razor. I only wish I were making it up.
And I can’t blame everyone else. It’s me too. Lack of motivation. Being overwhelmed. Bone weary from another night’s cruddy sleep.
It’s easy to get lost. To lose focus. And in those moments it’s either freak out entirely which
I do often enough would be very bad, OR I can take a breath and refocus.
Today, my short term Bible study led me to the book of Joshua. In reading, I realized that Joshua and I are a lot alike. Don’t worry, I won’t be launching a full scale attack on an unsuspecting nation any time soon. (I know you were concerned!) But I’ll bet Joshua knew restlessness. He knew waiting. He had seen the land promised to his forefathers. Saw it with his own two eyes. He was so excited to get rolling. So imagine his surprise when he went back with his buds to report the bounty of the land to Moses, how it was EXACTLY as God had promised and yet better than they could have imagined all at the same time and his friends all sold it out. …..Oh, there might be grapes as big as your head but did you SEE how big those dudes were? They were huge! We can NEVER overtake them! We can’t win! Let’s just camp here.
Um, wow. Forget how big your God is much? Of course, I don’t ever do that, do I? Do I?
Of course I do.
It’s no wonder God reminded the Israelites several times to be strong and courageous.
“Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their forefathers to give them.”
“Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful whever you go.”
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do no be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
God reminded the Israelites to be strong and courageous because He knew they were going to need them both. Their path wasn’t going to be easy. He did indeed promise that He would be with them. And He also encouraged them to remember His Word, something they weren’t always good at. (**Cough*cough** golden calf, I’m looking at you!) There was blessing for obedience. Success in all they would do. The Israelites knew fear even though they could clearly look back over many, many years and see how God had led them, goodness, even with his physical manifest presence. Pillar of fire, much? Even as they tested the patience of Almighty God, He saw their need and reminded them of who He was. And He reminded them that being obedient would provide a blessing. He did not say, however, that the road would be easy. Nope. But He did remind them that He would be with them.
He would be with them. Always. Just be strong and take courage.
I think that’s a pretty good reminder. Life isn’t for the faint of heart. There’s a lot of junk in this world and it threatens to overtake us. If we give it input, give it a voice into our lives, all is lost. Or at least it makes the way harder. Even the mundaneness of caring for a family can be overwhelming, nevermind financial issues, and strife in a marriage and cancer, and wars and persecution…..
You see what I mean? Yeah. It’s too much. But it’s a load we were never made to carry. Give it to Him. The world won’t change. But God will work a change in us as we remain strong and take courage. And it’s okay not to feel strong or courageous. He’s got more than enough to go around. So we do not live with a spirit of fear then, do we? He’s got it under control.
Just be strong and take courage. He will go with you wherever you go.