Every day this week Little Bit’s come home from school with an attitude.
We walk out of school, cross the street, pass the gate guard, turn down the side alley, approach our building. Up the stairs is when she starts. First the crying, then the all out bawling and by the time we get halfway up to our 3rd floor apartment, everyone around is wondering why this little thing of a girl is carrying on so in the stairwell.
And I’m always self-conscious about it, when all my *white* children are happy and smiling and my *dark* child is not.
Especially living in the country we adopted her from.
So the first day I soothed.
The second day I reminded her of all the reasons why she didn’t need to break down.
The third day I walked her back outside to “re-do,” to try to over-ride whatever was triggering the melt down.
On the fourth day, I was tired of it.
I took her into the bedroom and sat down with her on the bed. “Baby, you’ve got to stop this.” I told her.
“I can’t keep doing this with you every afternoon when we get home. There is homework to do and snacks to prepare and the other kids need help with things and we just can’t be doing this every. single. day.”
And I try to talk to her about why this is all happening and she doesn’t know and how can someone who hurts so deeply explain what is going on inside?
So I tell her she just needs to stop.
A momma gets so tired. And a momma has only so much time, energy, and know-how. And for surely the umpteenth time I ask God how exactly I am supposed to know what to do? I’m not smart enough for all this, nor is there enough of me to go around.
And that night, after the kids are down, a worn out momma picks up the book and starts reading where she left off.
“Jesus leaves the healthy ninety-nine safe in their pen while he goes out into the night looking for the one who’s lost, sick, depressed, disappointed, wounded, enslaved. And when He has found it, He lays it across His shoulders.
Can you imagine what His message to us would be otherwise? “I’ll come after you and save you- if I’m not too busy saving others, and if my attention isn’t needed keeping the ninety-nine others safe. After all, you probably got into this mess yourself, and it wouldn’t be fair to deprive the others, who are being good, of my time and attention just to keep coming after you.”
Never in Scripture does Jesus give a message anything like this. Instead, He promises to come after the one…”
~Undaunted, by Christine Caine
And I’m cut to the quick and whispers across my soul tell me why He’s placed these children in my home, why my life has been turned upside down by adoption. He’s picking me up by my weary arms and setting me on my feet and calling me to a Glory I can’t wrap my petty mind around.
The glory of the gospel.
My heart stirs and I fall in love with Jesus all over again and I commit to shepherding these hearts, even little hearts that don’t know why they do what they do ~ especially those ~ with a pursuing love that reflects the Savior.
How will I do it? I don’t know except this: by Him and through Him and to Him… and with Him.
How many times will this be asked of me? Countless. How many soft words, gentle touches, kind guidances, second chances? As many as the sands of the seashore.
And each time I’ll experience afresh His mercy, be awed by His humility, become perfected in His love… I’ll know the gentle ways of the Shepherd.
For the next few weeks, Simply Trusting Thursdays will focus on Jesus-like mothering. Jesus-mothering is based on trusting the gentle ways of Jesus to guide us, teach us, and show us how to shepherd our children.
As a mom who does not have mothering all figured out, I’ve been turning to the scriptures…yes, in desperation…and He’s been challenging my heart to trust. Trust enough to follow in His footsteps, lose my life, scatter the seed, cast bread on water…let go of my mothering hopes, dreams, and expectations. Take it one moment at a time, surrendered and listening.
I’ve been meditating on these principles now for several months as they relate to mothering, and although I’m shaking in my boots to even attempt to put them into words here on the blog where others can read them, I need to for me. I need to process what He is kneading into my heart. It seems He’s shaping in me a brand new philosophy of mothering…