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Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Grace (Or, Pineapple Armpits)

Desperate, Chapter 4.
"All soldiers are trained to expect and anticipate war, so they are not surprised when the battle starts. Moms need to understand that this is the reality of life with children in a fallen world. Getting angry and upset for children being selfish and demanding creates stress and havoc in the mind, emotions, and body of a woman. Prepare yourself for the battle and accept the limitations of your husband, children, and home--and of yourself. And then dtermine that you will, in time, subdue your home, overcome in the fight for the hearts of your children, and find God's joy and blessing through your obedience." (p. 49)

This chapter is my favorite, I think. The message is SO needed in my life. My despair always stems from discouragement when serious troubles arise.
I am surrouneded by stubbornly sinful people, including myself.
I am glad to see the verse "In this world you will have trouble" directly applied to motherhood.
I love the completion of the verse- "Take heart! I have overcome the world!"  There is hope!
My own sinful selfishness combined with my kiddos' sinful disobedience can cause my heart to feel overwhelmed.
But this chapter (I should read it once a week at least, until Arwyn turns 20) reminds me that al this naughtiness is par for the course.
I love Sally's husband's question, "At what age did you stop sinning?" That gives me a good perspective on dealing with my kids naughtiness.
I have a tendecy to think I am failing and all my efforts futile when my tiny people keep doing the same wrong thing over and over. But then I remember that so do I, and I have a firm belief that there is hope for me.
Grace has become so real to me lately. I must run to the throne for it over and over.
The hymn words keep coming to me;
"O to grace how great a debtor
daily I'm constrained to be.
Let thy goodness, like fetter,
bind my wandering heart to thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it;
prone to leave the God I love.
Here's my heart O take and seal it
Seal it for thy courts above."
I'm a grace beggar.
I hate that I can't do it right. I hate that I have to constantly ask forgiveness. I don't like to remember that MY SIN is what kept Christ on the cross.
But I am pretty sure that that is right where Christ wants me. Totally dependent. Perpetually humbled.

Being the grace junky that I am, and being filled with that grace, you'd think I'd be good at extending it to my kids. But, instead, like the jerkface who was forgiven a billion dollars, and then went and demanded the 5 bucks he had loaned someone else, I can be stingy with grace toward my kids.
Lord help me! See? Grace beggar.

Praise God for His Grace, His goodness, His forgiveness, and His strengthening Presence.
I pray that the Holy Spirit will just overwhelm me and make me pop out all over with fruit of the Spirit. (I'm talking apples dangling from my ears, strawberry rings, raspberry ankle bracelets....pineapples in my armpits! Imagine how awesome it would be if everywhere I went I trailed sweet fruit! I think people would want to follow me around, just waiting for the mangoes. just call me the fruit lady.)

And, the good news is, Jesus tells us that all we have to do is ask, and the Father gives good gifts! He gives to all of us LIBERALLY.
Happy day.

1 comment:

Ruth said...

You are not alone Jocelyn. We who are honest with God and ourselves will be the first to admit our weaknesses so that we can recieve His strength. James 5:17 Confess your faults one to another and pray for each other so that you may be healed. You're on your way to healing sister! But you're right- it is only through becoming a grace beggar. Be thankful EVEN in this ugly display of what is in your heart (can totally relate!), because it drives you to the throne of grace. Grace = Power!Praise God for His sustaining grace!

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About Me
I love Jesus, my hubby, my 6 kiddos, my farm, good books and good food.