Perfectly timed perseverance
Perfectly timed perseverance
I was looking through the latest new lessons for KOI, relishing the thought of digging into something totally fresh, when a friend said, “Why don’t you let your kids pick the next topic? Mine always love doing that.” Mama guilt immediately sprang up, mingled with the pleasure of discovery . . . I had never let my children choose their KOI lesson before. What a good idea! That would help them take ownership of the material. Why didn’t I think of that? (Wince.)
To minimize the probability of utter chaos, I narrowed the choices down to five: all four new lessons plus Perseverance. My chances of them choosing one of the new lessons I wanted were pretty good. I prepared to coach through conflicting preferences, ready to cite memory verses about harmony (and ready to help “guide” them toward one of my faves).
As it turned out, both offspring scanned their options and agreed on Perseverance. Harmoniously. I was half elated because there was no argument, but half deflated because I didn’t get my wish for a brand new topic! Then God began flooding my mind with all the relevance that a study on perseverance could hold – learning to ride a two-wheeler; learning to swim the front crawl; picking up a tornado of toys after a day of playing hard; doing puzzles with too many pieces to count . . . the possibilities bloomed like my mother-in-law’s garden.
The Lord reminded me that I, too, need to be more resolute in several areas of my own life – not the least of which is setting aside daily time to converse with Him. Since becoming a mother seven and a half years ago, I’ve been repeatedly washed in waves of guilt over missing devotional time. Focused prayer moments have turned into unplanned naps because Mommy was simply pooped.
But this year, Benjamin and Jessica are miles more independent than ever before. Both somehow leaped an invisible hurdle, leaving their mother to deal with an unfamiliar space: quiet time alone. Even as I type, they’re in the backyard skipping from basketball hoop to trampoline to toy box. The only supervision is my occasional foray to the kitchen window when things get too quiet. It’ll be even quieter when school starts. With Jessica going into grade one, I’ll really be facing the double-edged sword of solitude.
This leads me to the conclusion that, as always, God knows what He’s doing. It’s time for me to persevere in the discipline of intercessory and listening prayer. It’s time to return to studying His Word. It’s time to shift some of my attention from my children back to their Creator. The thought fills me with nervous anticipation. Re-building good habits is hard. Self-discipline is Rob’s gifting, not mine. This gives me a taste of being a child again . . . feeling vulnerable and not so capable. Could be that Mama’s gonna be even more stretched than the kids this time ‘round!