Man, life gets busy. Doesn’t it? I mean, seriously. I sat down to lunch with a dear friend yesterday. She moved to Michigan almost a year ago. But as we talked, we realized a full year went by between when I saw her last and their move. Because as we also discussed, the years fly by, but the days go by so slow. ‘Tis the season. We have a four and a half year old, and a two and a half year old. The hours between when room time is done and when bed time arrives are the longest of the day. They typically include a lot of extreme emotions, too – lots of laughter, and lots of screaming and crying (and that’s just the kids… not to mention the rollercoaster I ride with them…) And it’s honestly so hard to get up every day, knowing the rollercoaster awaits, and look at my to do list and to prioritize what is really important, and what is fluff that can wait til the next day.
Y’all! Please tell me I’m not alone in this struggle. Stephen Covey makes it sound so dang easy. Oh, just put things into categories, and then go with it. It doesn’t matter how many cute stickers I put in my planner, y’all. Some days, I don’t just use them. I don’t write down all the things that need to be done because they are just too many to write. I don’t need to write “dishes” and “laundry” on my calendar every day. No, they have become as inevitable to me as death and taxes. Every single day of my life as a mom of two kids, those things will haunt me. Until one day they won’t, and then I will wonder at how long it takes for the laundry to pile, and how many hours the sink will sit totally empty. And I’ll miss it. I know I will. Because I spend time with friends who are empty nesters, and they tell me to treasure these moments.
So I’m trying. I try to prioritize my kids needs first. I’m trying to stop and take time to build with magnets and play with trains and push them on the swings. Because work and housework and responsibilities like paying bills and planning church lessons are all a means to an end. They are good things. Things that need to happen because I have committed myself to them. But those things will amazingly still be there to do when the kids are long gone. They won’t be little forever. As evidenced by the fact that we have now lived in this house five and a half years… we’ve been married eight and a half years… and our two beautiful babies aren’t babies any more. Time keeps marching on. As I sit and type this, the house is silent. It’s just the hum of the refrigerator, the bubbling of the fish tank, and… the ticking of the clock. Because time is marching. Always.
This past week in my Bible study at church we heard some amazing words from Beth Moore. She read a survey question from a mom that hit me. This mom said “You’re only as happy as your saddest child.” Beth went on to say that when we lean on God, “[He] can take our mourning and turn it to wild dancing.” That really has resonated with me. Because I so often get caught up in the fears and sadness of whatever emotional rollercoaster my kids are riding. And then I realize that it’s my job to help them lean on Him to help get off the ride. Granted, Gray is too young to understand, but Becca is very much in tune to talking to God and asking Him for help. So I guess all of this is to say that this week I have started realizing my number one priority is to lean on Him, and to put my kids in a close second – teaching them to also lean on Him. Everything else is just details. They fall way down the priority list. Because really, if I lean on Him, and teach them to lean on Him, everything else will fall into place. No, the dishes won’t do themselves, and sadly neither will the laundry. But I will find strength to do the things that need to be done when I FIRST place my trust in Him. It’s not the easiest thing in the world to do, but it IS the most important.
How are you prioritizing your life? It’s a challenge to remember to keep God first. Sometimes it’s hard to even put the kids above all the chores! It’s a daily struggle. As Beth Moore says (in her Esther study), “It’s tough being a woman who feels responsible for the ‘how.'” But y’all, the beautiful truth she goes on to share is what has gotten me through this week. She said, “Girlfriend, we are called to OBEDIENCE, not to figure out how to solve everything!” Isn’t that beautiful? Read it again. We are called to OBEDIENCE, NOT to figure out how to solve every problem. So put God first. And let Him organize the rest of your priorities. Because all those things are important. Friendships are important. But when you listen to Him, He will bring you back together with a long lost friend at exactly the right moment. Trust me. That’s exactly what happened to me this week. It all works out because He’s got the details. Let Him handle your priorities. When the emotional and physical rollercoaster you’re riding is just too much and you feel like the drama is going to pull you into the deep, let Him come in and rescue you. He promises He will. And y’all, He KEEPS HIS PROMISES!