She stumbles on the deck and gets a sliver in her finger, and first thing that precious little five-year-old does is run to you in her pain.
You pause what you are doing, kneel to embrace her, rebuke the pain, comfort her with your eyes and tone of voice, and help to remove the sliver. After a kiss and a snuggle she is off again to play in the green bliss of the backyard.
You brought the healing comfort of Heaven to her heart and her body as you attended to her.
This is the magnificent work of motherhood.
Mama, you scatter the seeds of Heaven throughout your day as you nourish little bodies and sing praises in your heart to your Heavenly Papa who does not leave your side, not ever.
He has not bound us to schedules of endless workbook-boredom and taxi-driving and frenetic to-do lists; we bind ourselves to over-committed and over-extended realities. Papa-God is always inviting us into deeper places of rest and wholeness in Him.
If we are stressed, maxed out, uninspired, tired, broken and sad, it’s time to take a sabbatical from the rigid hustle of our days and step back into the quiet, splendid love of God.
He desires us to be well-watered gardens. As we settle into the peaceful rhythms of a fruitful life, tending the little things and the little ones He has placed in our care, we pour out the fragrance of Heaven on this earth. And from that over-flow spills out life and freedom and joy for others.
It is not through our busyness that we honour God; it is not through our perfectly crafted and executed industriousness that we grow the perfect family. It is as we rest in Him that the power and magnificence of our freedom is illuminated and we are set free to be who He made us (which tends to stand in stark relief to the impositions of institutions and the expectations of others).
We can stop trying so hard, stop doing so much, and stop filling our children with ‘education’. Instead, we can let them unfold in the glorious light and affection of their Father, who speaks to them and loves them with unabated tenderness and delight as we live our moments alongside of them.
We don’t have to “make” our children, as though they are a project that needs our blundering effort to accomplish a successful outcome; we simply get to love, nurture, and bless them into who God has already made them to be! The “making” has already happened, we simply get the joy of leading them deeper into the light of God’s truth about Himself and who He says they are.
Who we are needs time to grow; let your children (and yourself) grow in the space of tender moments and unhurried life together. You will love it… and thrive.
As Mamas, we bring Heaven here by quieting the noise of the world in our lives; when we do this we will find refreshment and rest. And before we even take stock, our little ones will have grown into gardens of beauty that we did not know were possible before when we were striving with our fleshly efforts.
Trust the Master Gardener; He knows how this all works and He will gently lead you. He will not shove you, or shame you, or guilt you, or force you to work your tail of for results that are His domain.
Bring Heaven here by being the mother that your children need. You are not primarily a teacher, a robot, a taxi-driver, a cook, or a drill sergeant. You are a gentle parent on the same journey, stepping Heavenward, with your little flock one simple day at a time. Oh yes, even as you step towards that future reality, you are simultaneously bringing it here through your love each and every day.