Apparently, God knows I need to work on giving myself some grace. These last five weeks God has provided me with opportunities for a bit of practice. I am, after all, a recovering perfectionist and “control freak” – some days more than others. I frequently find that I need a nudge telling me I can’t do it all.
We have had five long weeks of sickness in our house. Yes, you read that right. Five weeks! From ear infections and the croup to sinus infections, stomach flu, and Influenza B. At least one member of my family has had a fever every week for five weeks. I have been down with the miserable flu bug these last two weeks. Unfortunately, even though “the Momma” is sick, the world continues to spin. My crew still needs to eat, do homework, etc. etc.
I am blessed to have a supportive husband with friends and family members to help, but it is still a big challenge. Leaving projects undone, canceling plans, losing energy, feeling crummy, ordering pizza yet AGAIN, leaves me feeling weak. Very weak.
I don’t know about you, but I don’t like feeling weak. I don’t like feeling dependant on other people. I much prefer giving instead of receiving, and I love juggling everything on my plate. For some reason, all of this helps me feel like I am doing a decent job as both a wife and a mother. Can you relate to the doing that defines your being? I slip into this with people and, sadly, sometimes with God as well.
I feel thankful I am not alone in this process. Like it or not, there is the feeling of accomplishment that comes with juggling balls in the air. Seasons like this are when all the balls come crashing down to the ground. I then realize just how much I cling to the illusion of being in control. Ouch.
This morning I drove the boys to school. When I returned home, I sat down for some quiet time. Instead of interacting with Jesus, I fell asleep for over an hour sitting in my chair. I woke up feeling frustrated that I had “wasted” my morning. Afterall, I was eager to start my day and get productive!
I decided to take a few minutes to interact with Jesus before tackling that stack of two weeks of work that has accumulated on my desk. I told God how frustrated I felt that, after two weeks of feeling crummy, I still don’t have energy. While sharing this with Immanuel, I noticed a verse come to mind, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.” I remembered this was 2 Corinthians 12:9. This thought stopped me in my tracks as a wave of peace flooded my body and my mind.
You see, I have leaned into this verse during other seasons of my life, where I felt weak and weary. In these times God sustained me and carried me through the “deserts” that otherwise would have been too much for me. These problematic seasons were times I felt God’s presence and provision. I felt God’s presence was near in some profound ways. He was teaching me to accept my weakness and to rest in His perfect plan. In my self-sufficiency, I often need reminders that the best way is to know when to stop and leave the heavy-lifting to God. I imagine you have some areas in your life where you push yourself to live up to your expectations – and the expectations of other people. I encourage you to interact with Immanuel and ask Him what He wants you to know about receiving His power and strength in the midst of your weakness. May you find the peace that exceeds your understanding.