1 comment | published by Linda | December 18, 2009

1 Samuel 1:27
“I prayed for this child. The Lord answered my prayer and gave him to me.”

He lies across the hot pavement with his arms stretched out in front with fingers reaching into my flowerbed. As he is intently watching the ants scurrying about their business, a butterfly floats by that catches his attention. He has been studying these ants for quite some time, and shouts with delight when the beautiful butterfly floats across his vision. As he runs into the kitchen to share of the pure joy he was finding in his discoveries, I meet him at the door with open arms.

I had been scurrying around the home much like the ants he had been observing, as I had much to do. I thought of the wonder that filled my son as he was still, watching and drinking in the busyness of these little insects. I suppose at times I appear to him to be much like the ants. I move, and generally am undertaking more than one task at a time as if I were many. Answering questions, treating scrapes, making sandwiches, sweeping the floor, while holding my baby.

He likes to help. I have made meals with him by my side that could have taken thirty minutes to prepare, yet mysteriously took well over an hour including spilled sauce, wet towels, many licked spoons and more laundry to clean as my cook in training was an active participant. It would be easy to rush about and complete my tasks quickly and efficiently, yet this would be only something to mark off of my list, instead of something that could make a mark on my heart, and the heart of my son.

If he and I were to race down the driveway I would win, thus making the race not too fun for him. This must be why he takes my hand every morning so that we can walk hand in hand out to the kitchen together. He knows I’m fast, and sometimes it’s difficult to keep up my pace. Watching my back from down the hall is not quite the same. He holds my hand so that he can see my face, and he knows that I want to see his.

There are blessings in slowness. Those moments in the evening when I stop my busy routine to rub his back and tell him I love him as he slowly falls asleep, or stopping to listen to a story he is telling, as only a four year old knows how. These are the moments I will remember. My daily lists will be gone and unimportant, yet the list of memories that I fall back on will be filled with the moments of slowness with my children.

A new season will come when I am old, and have no need to rush about, and my body will be tired. I may even find myself becoming caught up in watching a beautiful butterfly that crosses my vision. I’m certain I will call my son to share in my delight, and I pray he will desire to stop the busyness that is sure to surround him and listen to my joy. In this season of my life a race down the driveway would have a quite different outcome. It would not hold much fun for me, as I would be unable to keep up in any way.

Instead of being rushed by as I will be a bit slower, it is my prayer that my son will take hold of my hand so that I can see his face, and I will know he wants to see

Posted in Play Room    |   Tags: Catch Me If You Can
0 comments | published by Linda | December 09, 2009

Returning home with my kids, starving for lunch, I think to myself, “If I could just step inside the refrigerator all by myself for a few minutes, and grab a bite of something, I would then have the energy to prepare lunch for all of my little people.” I am reminded of the airplane philosophy. You know the one, “If you are traveling with children, please secure your oxygen mask before you assist your children with theirs.”

I remember the first time I heard this. I was taken back by the thought of not putting my children first, but how true it is. What good am I if I’m not breathing? What kind of help could I give? This has caused me to think of how God wants me to live by the airplane philosophy as a mom.
How can I live in a way that shows Gods character if I haven’t first been filled up by spending time with Him? I’d be empty.

The airplane philosophy…

“If you’re traveling with children, please secure your relationship with God before you assist your children with theirs.”

Posted in Play Room    |   Tags: The Airplane Philosophy
1 comment | published by Linda | November 23, 2009

Psalm 34:7
“The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him, and rescues them.”

Psalm 91:11-12
“For He orders His angels to protect you wherever you go. They will steady you with their hands to keep you from stumbling against the rocks on the trail.”

Sometimes I wonder if he was even aware of his shadow. At a young age my son was followed throughout each day by a shadow that stood about three feet tall, with satiny brown hair and big brown eyes. She followed him closer than his real shadow would be able to compete with. I would watch her attempt to match his every move. If he stood up, she stood up. If he threw a rock, she threw a rock. If he would laugh, she would echo. Her goal was to see how close she needed to be to become a part of him.

It must have become second nature to him to be followed and imitated in all he did, because it seemed he was actually unaware of the miniature giggling shadow who was holding onto the back of his shirt. He’d grown accustomed to being followed.

Years have passed and she no longer shadows behind him, yet this picture remains in my mind and reminds me that angels have replaced her grip and are holding tightly to the back of his shirt.

Posted in Play Room    |   Tags: His Giggling Shadow
1 comment | published by Linda | November 19, 2009

Nehemiah 8:10
“The joy of the Lord is your strength.”

I have no reason to spend much time during the day checking my make-up or my appearance in a mirror. I have several little mirrors that follow me throughout my days that reflect what’s going on in my heart. It’s now all too clear to me if my smile has faded and my color is gone, my loss of joy cannot be hidden. My children stand beside me and display clearly the attitude that has dripped off of me and soaked into them.
The scriptures explain how the Joy of the Lord is our strength, and we are to be imitators of God as we raise our children and to strive to show them who God really is. If the joy of the Lord is MY strength, then it’s safe to believe that the strength of my children is from the joy of their father and mother.

When I am truly joyful and completely enjoying my days and being in the presence of my children, they become strong and somehow confident. Yet if I’m edgy and irritable, there’s no mercy coming out through their faces and words.

How can I expect my children to be joyful, peaceful and strong in character if they are mere reflections of a worn out mom who finds herself too busy to rejoice in the incredible life she has been blessed with?

I have the joy of the Lord to give me the strength I need. And He not only promises strength, but God given strength. Even on those days where I feel as though I have nothing left to offer, my Lord can continue to care for my children through me. When I am in continual conversation with Him, He sustains me. I become joyful once again because He is my God. “The Lord God is my strength, and He will give me the speed of a deer and bring me safely over the mountains.” Habakkuk 3:19

I would like to start each day looking into each of my children’s eyes and giving them a smile of deep affection, to remember to laugh, smile and to lighten up.

Posted in Play Room    |   Tags: Their Mother’s Joy