It is 8:02am. I’m barricaded in the bathroom aimlessly scrolling through Pinterest while the fighting intensifies in the living room. How many hours until the first wave of kiddos heads to bed? 11? Nope. 12. Who’s idea was a later bedtime on Friday night anyways? Oh, yeah. Mine.
It’s 8:03am. Still scrolling. They’re knocking on the bathroom door now. I yell something I hope is convincing and keep scrolling. They’re still knocking. *sigh* Why is this mom thing so hard some days? They’ve been at each other all morning. Why isn’t is socially acceptable to pour a glass of wine in the morning anyways? Shouldn’t I have lasted at least until after noon?
8:04am. I’m starting to get really annoyed. The knocking has stopped, but they are clearly running amuck. I can hear footsteps where I expressly forbid footsteps to be. Why? Seriously!! My morning started out so well. Some good cuddle time with hubby dearest. Devotions and coffee. Wait. Scratch that. Devotions without coffee. Pretty sure my cup is still sitting there beside my Bible. Full. Probably disgusting and cold now. I hope it’s not been poured onto my Bible…hmm. Oh, I remember. They were out of bed before their alarms rang. I was still trying to finish up my devotions. Why does God allow that anyways? That was our special time. I get up early for that! Can’t it remain uninterrupted?
8:05am. I’m still scrolling through Pinterest but not really seeing anything anymore. I kept to the breakfast schedule. They fought over cups. I let them play tag while they waited for the bus to come for the oldest. There were so many fights! Why did they want to play anyways? Now it’s time to get the babies up. But adding 2 more to the mess downstairs feels overwhelming and I’m trying to convince myself that they’re probably still sleeping anyways. I want to cry, but I’m too angry. The hopeless cloud is closing in. How in the world am I going to make it through today? Where’s the strength and grace that God has promised me?
It was with that last question hurled at God from my thoughts that I suddenly saw myself. Sitting in the bathroom. Still in my robe. No coffee. Hair still tossed on my head from washing my face earlier.
Scrolling through Pinterest.
I was in here because I needed a break. Because my job is overwhelming. Because some days just don’t go well. And where was I running? To Pinterest? I’m just passively allowing randomly suggested worldly wisdom to be hurled into my dark hopelessness. Why did I think THIS was the rest I needed? The rejuvenation I craved? I’m sitting here accusing my Father of not providing His promised grace and strength, but I haven’t run to Him for it!
I turn around and kneel with my phone turned off. Now the tears can come because the anger is gone. I am weak and helpless. Completely unable to continue on. But He isn’t. He is there ready and waiting with open arms to remind me of what He has given so that I can run to Him as His daughter. His Son stands ready to intercede. To interpret my tearful, sinful words into the pleas of faith and trust that He longs to hear.
8:09am. I dry my tears and open that bathroom door. I retrieve my girls from the various places and activities they have run to and hug them. Remind them of what book time is supposed to look like. Make sure that they have the books they need. The blankets. Kiss their sweet foreheads.
8:12am. Open the babies’ door. Oh, the smiles they have for me in the morning! Change diapers. Fix a bottle. Set breakfast on the trays. *deep breath* God has provided. Grace for each moment. Strength for the day.
I’ll just go ahead and let you know… The morning still didn’t go real well from a “mom of the year” point of view. There were so many failures. From me. From the kiddos. I was tired. I never really did get to that cup of coffee. But I tried – with feeble, wobbling steps – to run. Every time. To run back to the arms of the One who has provided all I need. Grace for each moment. Strength for the day. To run in humble, broken acknowledgement of my shortcomings. To run. To plead for my children’s souls. To run. To beg for the desire to give love to such sinful little people from such a sinful heart as mine. To run. To find the rest I needed but wasn’t going to find in my circumstances. To run. Run to the arms that sent His Son to the cross so I could be in right fellowship with my God. Run. Rest in Him. Run.
We don’t always have the beautiful devotions setting we desire with our journal and cup of coffee. It can’t even always be a time out in the bathroom for mom. Sometimes it’s a simple acknowledgement of trust and belief hurled upwards amidst the chaos. But His promises are sure. And He stands ready with open arms. Ready to catch us as we run with the last of our strength. Running to rest in Him.