Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Laundering and Bedtime

Laundry perplexes me.

Tossed and piled, dirty laundry evokes dread and irritation in me, yet freshly laundered, crisply folded, and stored laundry transfigures me from a sluggish mommy of three, who is just trying to keep it together, to an adroit homemaker who never fears that soiled garment may be lurking under the sofa.

How can fabric do that? Perplexing.

Isaac, 14 months at nap time.
Tonight as I was nursing my littlest one, I thought about how laundry and bedtime routines are similarly perplexing.

Tucked and snuggled in bed, my preschool children can stir up great warmth and emotion in my heart; yet my over-tired, sugar-filled, cranky children can, in a flash, transform me into an impatient, hard, bad-tempered drill sergeant, who denies that extra cup of water, one more trip to the toilet, and that ever-needed snack without a crack of compassion in her voice. 

How can bedtime do that? Perplexing.

Unlike laundry, children do not come with care instructions: wash with like siblings, feed lean meats, discipline when necessary, and put to sleep at [insert hour here] for ten to twelve hours.

One of these days this rookie-mother will figure out a good system, the perfect routine, a fail-safe way of being skillful in rearing her children. 

In the meantime, I trust in God's sovereignty; He knew before the foundation of the world what fabric of mommy I am and what fabric of children mine are. He paired us perfectly together for His glory and for a purpose far beyond my understanding. 

And, as for care instructions? God's Word says: "do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with your God."

Lord Jesus, in Your divine wisdom and according to Your holy purpose, You have entrusted me with three children: masterpieces, uniquely patterned fabrics made in Your image. Soften my sharp angles, and let me not prick and scar their tender hearts. Help me remember to mother on delicate cycle more often.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Laughter was immediate. 

My daughter Izzie snuggled her face into Joseph's little neck while murmuring motherly words to him when she jumped away from him and screamed, "MOM! You've got to come over here and smell Joseph!"

"Why? Does he stink?" 

Of late, I've been exercising hard and oftentimes have to nurse shortly after the workout is complete. I get a shower, but poor Joseph sometimes gets forgotten. Nonetheless, I braced myself for the "he smells like butt" comment that has been a recent favorite, which I thought had been nipped in the bud.

"NOOO! He smells like Miss J!"

What a relief! :)

Earlier at church, Miss J had scooped up Joseph and loved on him while I enjoyed a kid-free breakfast. How marvelous!

The distinction between Joseph's stench after my workouts and his sweet rosy-powdery fragrance after a Miss J-snuggle made me think about the aroma of Christ.

Maybe it's a stretch, but I can't help but thinking that I want to be snuggling up to my Savior, the Word, and His promises so that whenever someone decides to come close--you know, heart-intimate-close--that I still have the lingering fragrance of His Majesty and not of the futile works of man.

Lord Jesus, thank you for connecting the everyday to the lasting eternal truths of having an intimate relationship with you. May you make me found fragrant of heaven's glory as I nestle in close under the shelter of your breast. Amen.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Marriage Is So Gross!

Jammer day and views on marriage.

Izzie, explaining to Joseph--nearly three months old--why marriage is so gross, said, "There's lots of hugging and kissing and..."

My two and a half year old, Isaac interrupts, "and COOKIES, too!"

Initially I roared with laughter, especially at the double entendre of "cookies." How could they know?! 

My mind bounced from my dining room table where the conversation was happening to the front room of my childhood home. And my heart saddened. I don't recall having such a sweet, innocent view of marriage.

To my tender eyes, marriage looked strained, artificial, plastic. I remember wanting to be a mommy, but dreading the traditional route of becoming a mommy through marriage. Who would want to be a part of THAT?!

Many years have passed and much healing has allowed me to see the joy and security and safety in loving and being loved by a man who fears the Lord and who loves me with every fiber of his being. 

What a blessing that my children will be able to sit at their dining room table with their children, allow their mind to travel back to their humble beginnings, and remember that in their mommy and daddy's marriage there was lots of hugging and kissing...and cookies. ;)

Lord Jesus, thank you for revealing one more way you have restored my heart and for protecting my children in a marriage where hugging and kissing is the norm. Keep my eyes and heart and kisses ready for the love of my life, my husband. Amen.