Yesterday as I was watching my girls play, I couldn’t stop smiling. I felt so happy that God had given them to me (for this short time, I have to add). It hit me all of a sudden that God gave them to me to slow me down…to put me in this place where I would find Him…to wake up and see things fresh and new as I explored the world all over again with them…to find meaning in routines and actions and even words that I thought were meaningless or just “less”. I like life a lot better this time around. A lot better.
A couple of years ago, God made me a beautiful promise. I had spent several years confused and upset, years of great things such as “motherhood” and “ministry”. I was tormented by questions and thoughts like “Am I doing enough?”, “Is God disappointed with me?” and “Where am I supposed to be?” I had planned and even committed to such a different life, and here I was…very, very normal in a very, very normal place doing very, very normal things. Well, after a couple years of difficult wrestling, the Lord made a covenant with me that changed my life. Backed up by His Word like crazy, it went something like this: “Lyndsay, I give you permission to let go of every single thing you think I want from you, and I ask you to do this: Live your life to be in an intimate, growing relationship with Me. Be consumed with knowing Me. Set your thoughts and desires on the unseen realm with Me. If you do this, I promise you will not miss anything I had for you to accomplish on earth.” There’s more, but that’s the main point. I cannot describe how this utterly and completely set me free from my bondage. I believe this promise by faith, and have now for 2 years. I am a different person than I was then.
There is a peace in knowing that my only job is to be in love with Jesus and dwell in His love for me, because it puts “my day job” in proper perspective. There is a contentment in knowing that He promises to lead and guide my external affairs as my focus is NOT on them. As I say often in my blog, I may sound crazy but it’s true. I was not fully alive, not for one moment, until I started living in light of this promise. I am fully alive to enjoy my kids, because they are not in the way of what “God wanted to do with my life.” I am fully alive to enjoy my home, because God works on my heart while I work on the dishes. I am fully alive to be a joyful wife (Oh Lord help me be a joyful wife!), because God gets to choose who I spend my life praying for and ministering to…and my husband is #1 on that list. I admit I want to do more at times, because of the love He has given me for the nations and people in need. But I do trust His promise in this as well. He is the one at work, not me, and it will always be that way.
St. Irenaeus of Lyons (whoever he is, I’m not pretending to know) said, “The glory of God is man fully alive.” My joy and freedom is that no matter what happens in my life, as seasons change and blessings, relationships, children, jobs, even temporary callings come and go, my first and foremost reason for living happens as I “sit down in His shade with great delight.” (Song of Solomon) I’ve heard it said, and I’m adopting it as my own: I’m teaching my children to not be loving volunteers but to be voluntary lovers!