Parenting is hard work. It takes every ounce of physical and emotional energy I can muster and most days I come up short. I’m twenty-one years into this bittersweet parenting journey and once again I’m reminded that coming up short is the very place where His grace and mercy meet my deepest need.
The day is perfect for a Sunday afternoon church picnic. Yet, I bemoan my lost nap time, consider how much easier it would be to eat at home, and prepare to extrovert for a few more hours.
I make my way out the door to see them loading the suburban. “Do we really need all that?” I think to myself. I know better than to ask.
We arrive at the picnic and make our way to an open table. She lays out the cloth and he unpacks the sandwiches. They serve one another and me. Their joy and gratitude for the simple lunch revives my weary spirit.
Our church is blessed with young families and it feels as though we’re seated in the middle of them all. A dozen boys and girls run and laugh and play as we eat. It’s loud. One of mine asks, “Mom, aren’t you glad we aren’t little kids anymore?” I smile and say, “I’m glad you’re the ages you are right now.”
Later, Eric and I sit in the shade talking with friends, and I watch a mamma with one on her hip and two in tow. Behind me I hear a hungry infant crying, dependent on another for “lunch”.
And. . .
“Will you help me?”
“Can we go there?”
“Wait on me!”
“Let me put your shoes on!”
I remember those days and always being sleep deprived and exhausted. I’m still exhausted but it’s different now. Waiting up and watching. Holding a hand and a heart. Navigating faith and fear.
Parenting is hard work.
Twenty-one years into it and this one thing I know.
My God is able.
But sometimes I forget.
I get overwhelmed and tired and fearful.
And I need to be reminded of the truth. The Truth, people.
I open The Guidebook for Parenting. God is the Author. His words remind me of His purpose and plans, what He has already done, and what He will do. He shows me again that He is the All-Sufficient, Ever-Present One and that He never, ever comes up short.
You probably already know all that and never need a reminder.
But just in case you do, I wrote it down. I make it my prayer on those days when I come up short. In other words, every. single. day.
Tweet this: A Parent’s Prayer: Where His grace and mercy meet my deepest need.