Fill’er Up, God!!!

 

other12_Spilled-Water

The boys and I are settled in our new home to some extent, although we are currently going through a kitchen renovation, which means we do not cook in the house unless it is microwavable.  You do not fully appreciate having a sink, an oven or simply a counter top to set things on until those are gone.  I believe the results will be beautiful when they are done and I am sure it will be worth it to my friend who owns the home.  We just need to be a little more patient and flexible.  We are praying for it to be finished by Thanksgiving so I can actually cook the turkey…lol, how I love to cook and bake and how I miss it! 

I can’t seem to tell these days what direction my life is going.  It is just moving around kind of quickly, with some fluidity, this way and that.  I can’t find much to complain about as far as circumstances go.  I can however list a myriad of questions about life, living and the Lord.  It has been a while since I had substantial questions for the Lord.  For the most part I was going along just believing and trusting in faith that He is guiding me.  Opening and closing doors here and there.  Recently I have been giving some doubts the benefit of thought.  What have I done with my life?  What have I really accomplished? How well have I done as a mother? What am I going to do when my kids are grown and gone? 

The answers to all these questions seem to be wrapped up in my children.  Everything I am about is connected to them in someway.  And because of my inability to be objective when it comes to them I am always feeling like a failure.  When I go to God about this I am even brought lower by the unworthiness I experience.  It isn’t so much guilt, though I am sure it plays a part, it is the inadequacy I am overwhelmed with when my children disappoint me.  I get my expectations all built up thinking that I have some how imparted the importance of love, friendship, honoring one another and loving God with all your heart to them and then I find out different.  I am reminded of all the times I probably disappointed my parents.  The ironic part is I would have never realized how I disappointed them until my children did the same to me.  Why didn’t I learn that sooner?

My two grown children lives are not going exactly the way I had hoped and prayed.  Both are very capable, responsible and very smart.  And beautiful…of course I say that cuz I am their mama…but I see them struggling with things in their lives that hurt my heart.  As a young single mother, raising them I thought if I did everything the opposite of my parents they would not have as many struggles as I did, especially in relationships.  I was wrong.  To say very wrong would be saying that everything I did or did not do was a waste of time.  Because I have faith in God and His word, I believe that “all things work together for good to them who love Him, to them who are called.”  Is that spoken to just the believer or can that be to the believer’s children if by chance they do not believe.  They made professions as children and have a foundation but their current choices do not reflect any of that.  I love them and only want them to realize the peace they could have in their lives if they only turned to God.  The God I tried to show them.  Jesus.  But did I?

You ever hear of the saying ‘blind leading the blind’?  Parenting is like that.  Do you ever feel like that?  I look back and think how did I think I could do it better than my parents.  I did not know what I was doing for sure and still not sure at times.  I am struggling to raise and teach my youngest two boys 12 and 14.  It seems they fight me at every turn.  I have to admit that there have been some days recently where I have just wanted to give up.  What’s the point, I ask myself?  Why do I think I can do any better a job with these two boys than I did with my older son and daughter?  I do not normally think or say to myself or God, it isn’t fair because I know that life is just sometimes not fair.  The bible says the rain falls on the just and unjust.  It is all so overwhelming at times when I sit and think about the shear responsibility of raising children into grown adults.  Why is it that when they make good, wise decisions we are so proud and as soon as they make a decision that leads to heartache we immediately feel guilty as if we ourselves did not teach them well enough?  That is probably my biggest obstacle right now.  Am I not trusting God with this?  Am I analyzing it too much?  Am I only seeing the negative? 

Facing a future without my children is, frankly, scaring the heck out of me.  This whole matter is causing me some real angst.  My two boys are just years away from going out on their own.  My oldest two are already too busy living life and are too far away to come around.  What am I going to do with myself when I have no more children to take care of?  How am I going to keep myself from focusing on myself when they are grown?  You may think that I am being mellow dramatic about this but these years are going faster than I want them to.  I can not slow them down.  I don’t want to hide from life.  I don’t want to avoid it either.  I just don’t want to face life alone.  And that day is coming so quickly.  What do I do about that? I can hear some saying now, “Get a life!”

What does it mean to get a life, anyway?  What does that look like? As I sit here and think about it the only thing I keep coming back to is not being alone.  So that means I have to open up my mind to the possibility of a relationship.  Have I missed my chance at finding my ‘”soul mate?”  It is probably not like “Let’s Make a Deal”, you know what is behind door number 3?  I have already chosen two doors and I got the short end of the stick both times.  I have not discussed this particular subject on spaces before although I have alluded to it through the guise of loneliness but I am wondering if the Lord will open the door for me to meet someone or date?  Now isn’t that a crazy question?  I have so much more to wonder about and focus on than the complications of navigating a relationship or even the stress of dating.  What in the world am I thinking about that for?  I have asked the Lord to just get it out of my mind, the idea of ever finding my “soul mate” because it seems that there is just too much disappointment connected with this whole concept.  Too messy.  Is that realistic? 

There is a particular verse in God’s Word that He gave me many years ago.  I claimed it then for myself.  It was during a time when the bottom fell out.  I was sitting in the center of my bed, crying so hard that no sound came out for several seconds, maybe minutes.  I could feel pain so deep and central in my heart that it was all I could do to just sit and cry. I remember speaking to God through my tears, “Will this pain ever go away, will I ever love again, will I ever know what it is like to be loved by another?”  I said it over and over again as I rocked back and forth praying, sobbing and crying out to Him.  I grabbed my bible next to my bed and opened it up.  The page that I had opened it to had some scripture highlighted.  One of the verses my eyes fell upon was Jeremiah 17:8.  Right there and then I felt His love.  I felt His arms wrap around me.  His Word did not answer the pain question or the being loved by another question.  But it brought relief.  It gave me a glimmer of hope.  A hope that was not defined but for certain.

For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters, Which spreads out its roots by the river,

And will not fear when heat comes; But its leaf will be green,

And will not be anxious in the year of drought, Nor will cease from yielding fruit.

01_tree_by_river

 Jeremiah 17:8

As I remember that moment I am realizing that everything we experience in a single minute becomes an opportunity for God to speak to us.  It becomes a thing in our life that God can use to bring beauty out of ashes.  He can make the crooked river straight.  He can make a mountain bow to Him.  He can take a crying, grieving woman and calm her heart.  So all the questions, doubts and fears that I have about my life, my children’s lives bring me back to Him.  Always.  Even now I can not go back to before I knew Him when I could not find comfort.  I can not get away from the fact that no matter how many questions I have, how inadequate I feel or how unworthy I am before Him, He loves me.  He knows better than I what doors I need to walk through.  If there is to be a ‘soul mate.’  What my children need and how my children will turn out, in spite of my mothering ways.

I think maybe all of these thoughts and questions are meant to empty me.  To take my eyes off my children and their lives, off myself and off the world.  To put them back on to Him.    

I am ready to be filled!

 

HeartWaterDrop7E0

Grace to you, Shell

PS: The song by JJ Heller "Love Me" (on my playlist) speaks to my heart

Love Me
BY JJ AND DAVE HELLER

He cries in the corner where nobody sees
He’s the kid with the story no one would believe
He prays every night, “Dear God won’t you please
Could you send someone here who will love me?”

Who will love me for me
Not for what I have done or what I will become
Who will love me for me
‘Cause nobody has shown me what love
What love really means

Her office is shrinking a little each day
She’s the woman whose husband has run away
She’ll go to the gym after working today
Maybe if she was thinner
Then he would’ve stayed
And she says…

Who will love me for me?
Not for what I have done or what I will become
Who will love me for me?
‘Cause nobody has shown me what love, what love really means

He’s waiting to die as he sits all alone
He’s a man in a cell who regrets what he’s done
He utters a cry from the depths of his soul
“Oh Lord, forgive me, I want to go home”

Then he heard a voice somewhere deep inside
And it said
“I know you’ve murdered and I know you’ve lied
I have watched you suffer all of your life
And now that you’ll listen, I’ll tell you that I…”

I will love you for you
Not for what you have done or what you will become
I will love you for you
I will give you the love
The love that you never knew



5 thoughts on “Fill’er Up, God!!!

  1. Joe says:

    I think that one way or another all things must flow from the place where we realize that no matter what we are accepted and loved by God…mistakes we\’ve made don\’t change this nor does circumstances because His love is as eternal as He is…in fact He is love therefore unlike man\’s love it doesn\’t wear out. We often times define ourselves but what we do…even as a parent but foremost we must keep that place where we realize our value to God is priceless…think of how He sacrificed His own son for us even before we were born. Our own righteousness is as filthy rags…even with the most amazing thing we think we\’ve done right it couldn\’t get us into heaven but accepting his love for us and believing that He is who He says He is does just that. I like a song I was listening to by DC Talk not long ago. That song the lead singer says…I\’m still a man in need of a savior…being Christian doesn\’t change that need…we need Him for everything…even our self worth. It\’s a faith thing. Every time I open the bible I read it like it\’s talking right to me…the blessings of God…His love for us…it\’s all there. I know this isn\’t a mystery to you but I just want to encourage you by the things you do know my dear friend. You\’re blessed to be a blessing.

  2. nita says:

    hi shell, as so often, I can relate to much of your blog. I needed to read that scripture this morning, so thank you – I have many things to be anxious about, children, grandchildren, my own health, where our place of worship should be _ I could go on, but I wont, I prayed and tried to put it all in a carrier bag this morning and leave it at the foot of the cross. so from one anxious inadequate guilty feeling mother, grandmother, child of god, to, it seems another – OVER TO YOU LORD- god bless you and yours – nita.

  3. Elizabeth says:

    Dear, dear, Shell…I have no answers for you my dear, but my heart goes out to you.Love you so much.You are a dear and cherished friend.Maybe I can make you smile. When your kids are grown and gone you can come take care of me! : )Hugs,Liz

  4. Rambling says:

    I read this blog with knowledge and experience as I have three sons, all of whom left eventually after university to live their lives. And I dealt with an empty nest. However, they are near enough that I get an email..get to talk or see them every day. Usually the email and phone; Visits are on holidays inc. Mother\’s day, my birthday and so on. But we do communicate. I understand your feeling when you touched on having taught your children the things they need to be loving productive and Godly adults. We as loving mothers lead the way by example and by the Word. We can pour ourselves out and do all we can..but ultimately it is up to the child. That is very difficult. When you know there is no control beyond family boundaries..then you have to pray and give them up To the Lord as you have done what you can rearing them. I still try to guide..they are forbearing with me..I appreciate that 🙂 and I still pray multiple times a day that the Lord not only uses them but me in any way He chooses.

  5. Margaret says:

    dear shelly don\’t worry so much what you can do when the children are out of the nest.Find somthing you really like to do and volunteer. there are always people who need help more then you do,and i find my self doing things i never dreamt i would be able to do,but pray for god to open doors and ask Him to put you where He wants you to be.I have 5 children and 3 of them live a faith filled life.The other two give no thought about their creator,but it keeps me on my knees that some day they will turn to their Heavenly Father and becomewhat He wants them to be.In the meantime i keep praying for God promises that the prayrer of a rightious man will be answered,it might just not be in my time,and i might never get to see them turn their lives around,but it is in His Hands!!I will keep you in my prayers. Lots of Hugs Margaret

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