We’ve had it pretty rough for the last week. The kids and I have been sick with a nasty cold. We’ve been posterchildren for the nighttime sniffly, sneezing, coughing aching, “so you can rest” medicine. (Or however that goes.) I feel like any strides I’ve made in the last three weeks to get us in a routine and break a few of our bad habits have come to a screeching hault. As far as homeschooling goes, well, the teacher got sick (that’s me) and then an outbreak occured in the school (population: 2), so that kind of put things on hold for a bit as well.
Tonight I feel like things are starting to clear up for everyone. (I gauge that by noticing a reduction in nose wiping and cleaner sleeves on my children’s shirts.) But when we do start back up again, which point do we start from? Where did we even leave off? What was our foundation to begin with?
That last question hit me pretty hard today. While taking care of three sickly munches and being sick myself, I had forgotten to shower for a
week couple of days. Today, the planets aligned and I was able to finally do that thanks to everyone napping at the same time. After my shower, I decided to put makeup on. Mind you, this was around 5 p.m. and I was finally “getting dressed for the day” but something made me want to wear makeup. I hardly ever wear it, as in, I think I’ve worn it less than five times this whole year. As I’m picking out eyeshadow, blush, etc. I realized I didn’t have my foundation powder. It wasn’t in the basket with all the other products. So, I start looking in the closet and in drawers and the question, “where’s my foundation?” kept rattling around in my head. I finally found it in another drawer, but the question still taunted me.
Where’s my foundation?
I started to wax spirtitual about how this relates to my relationship with God. Do I make Him the foundation of my life? Or is the stress that carries over from one day to the next my foundation? Some days it feels like the latter.
I know absolutely nothing about construction, except that I know when you mix water and concrete, you can make a foundation. So, if I want to get metaphorical, I could ask myself, what’s in that dry powder mixture of my foundation? If I were truly honest, I’d say a big part of it is stress – stress by my own hand – the one that likes to control every last detail of my life. The older I get, and the more children I have, I realize I’m a control freak. Oh the things we learn about ourselves as we seek wise counsel. There’s also the stress of being needed at every turn by three little munches. Don’t get me wrong, being needed is a GOOD thing. But sometimes it’s just really hard – especially when you’re trying to meet a need that can’t fully be communicated or verbalized yet. For example, asking my three-year-old which show he wants to watch or what he wants to eat and everything answer coming out as “that one” or “blue one” and you have no idea what that or blue is. The even harder part is that he knows exactly what he wants but is as equally frustrated with me for not knowing what he wants.
So, the concrete mixture. We’ve established that stress is a part of it. What else? There’s joy. Joy plays a pretty significant roll. Like the joy of hearing my husband’s car pull up in the evening, seeing my kids playing together or seeing all the laundry washed and put away (I have had this happen once and it is GLORIOUS!!!!), or the joy of looking back on my day and not feeling mommy guilt.
I know I also have anger and fear in my mixture for reasons I won’t go into. But there’s also happiness, contentment and gratitude. And the last three are all well and good, but the mixture in and of itself is just a mess. A powdery mess that gets all over everything. I still need to add water in order to pour that foundation.
As I thought about this, I kept hearing, “Living Water”. John 4:14 popped up when I searched for verses about it.
But whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.
So, if partner with the Living Water of Jesus, I’ll get my foundation. Easy enough, right? Not for this control freak.
This makes me think of Matthew 28:11, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” I know I don’t have to go it all alone during the day – the homeschooling, potty training, housekeeping. And I know giving it over to Him and partnering with Him is more than just “filling Him in” on my frustrations and telling Him what I want to see happen but more of me stopping and LISTENING to Him when He talks. I just have this scene in my head from any movie or show where a top executive is rushing down a hallway spouting off all these things that need to be done and the personal assistant is there trying to keep up and trying to communicate something in return. On most days, I’m probably treating God like the executive treats the assistant. But, He’s not trying to keep up with me. He’s still waiting patiently for me at the end of the hall with something important to tell me while I’m going off on a tangent about how my child won’t do XYZ when I tell him/her to.
Handing over my messy, chalky concrete mixture and partnering with Jesus and spinning together in a giant cement mixer (bare with me, I’m almost done with the metaphors) is scary and quite often times, nauseating. But in the end, the foundation is there – it’s set in place. It’s something to build on. And once it’s built, external forces may cause a crack or five, but the Holy Spirit will come in and seal those cracks and bring comfort and peace with Him to help with the healing process.
So where is my foundation? It’s still in the cement mixer, spinning around and waiting to be poured. And I realize this now all because I suddenly wanted to wear makeup at 5 p.m.