Talk about needing some grace. I’m a good week and a half behind on my reading. I could go on and on with a list of excuses … an unexpected part-time job opportunity, Christmas party, Christmas crafting … oh dear. Not to mention that when I read, I’ve been going quite slow – there is so much to take in with this book. It takes awhile for it to sink in and I’ve appreciated taking some time to pray and reflect after each chapter.
I dog-earred quite a few pages from chapters 2-7 (that’s how far I’ve gotten). More than anything, I feel like I’ve been convicted to take off many masks in my life. The mask of “I’ve got it all together”, the mask of “I like being a mama 24/7”, the mask of “I’m not afraid of anything” and the mask of “I can control/take responsibility for everything”. Each of these go so deep into my being, into my history, into my present. I would journal many of these thoughts here, but they involve others and it isn’t fully my story to tell.
Instead, I’ll share the quotes that have left a lasting impression on me.
We don’t have to tell everyone how we are doing. In fact, that would be a problem all my itself, , trying to be intimate and vulnerable with everyone. But it is important that we tell someone. (page 56)
Our fluctuating humanness is there on purpose, to remind us of our need and draw us to the One who can meet it … To embrace the color and fullness of our emotional un-fine state is to open wide enough to receive compassion and grace. Only then will we be able to offer that same compassion and grace to others in honest and authentic ways. page 58
… the choice we have to receive the gift of rest, because we have a God who sees and cares and notices. He will not come undone. He remains un-overwhelmable. page 65
There is more power in sharing our weaknesses than our strengths. page 86
About the mask of liking being a mama 24/7 – I’ve really been struggling with this lately. I LOVE motherhood always. Liking it though, not all the time. I adore my children, I truly do. I wouldn’t trade them for anything, but a break would be welcome. A time to do nothing, to sleep, to read, or a take a bath. I crave these things and often find myself dwelling on the desire for them too often. I’m overwhelmed most days – I’m trying to fulfill my children, care for my husband, our home, and somehow carve out enough self-care to do it all again the next day. I was so encouraged when reading that no matter how overwhelmed I become, the Lord is un-overwhelmable. I can rest in that. Such a relief to hold fast to that reminder.
If my reading this week wasn’t enough. I also read and tucked away this treasure from my Streams in Desert devotional …
Beloved, do not try to get out of a dark place, except, in God’s time and in God’s way. The time of trouble is meant to teach you lessons that you sorely need.
The Lord is giving me the reminders I need around every corner. That, is exactly the grace I need and I am so thankful for it.
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