~ a precious mother's day gift from my children ~
We have been busy. Though the blog doesn't reflect what my family and I have been doing like it used to, we have have been busier than ever. It's a "good busy". Wonderful, actually.
In talking to a friend recently, I described this stage of life with my kids as "the sweet spot". We are between the tedious "baby years" and on the cusp of all that the "teenage years" will entail, and all of the kids are old enough to experience some really fun things together. While the instructing and disciplining has not ended, I can see that the work that seemed unending a year or so ago - and for the 13 years before that - has changed to helping our kids live out the things that we have tried with our whole hearts to teach them in the first years of their lives. Physically, they are not so demanding. Assuming that everyone can find their shoes before we head out the door, we load up and go fast and furiously on a daily basis without a stroller or diaper bag and have no nap times to return home for. So, in that respect, parenting has become "easier"...
In other ways, parenting has become the most weighty thing that I have ever experienced in my life. The understanding of the job that we have to do is more overwhelming now than it has ever been. The importance of doing it well is more clear than ever before. The consequences are eternal and will affect others - not just our family and our comfort - for the rest of our kids' lives. The time that we have left - especially with our oldest - seems to be visible sands falling through an hour-glass. The end of this part of our journey with her is only four years away. Four years - what used to seem like an eternity when there where sleepless nights, strong-willed toddlers, diaper-filled days - seems like the flip of a calendar page away now.
Somedays I feel sad about that. Sometimes, I am fearful or anxious. But mostly, I just feel more focused than ever to fulfill God's will for my life in a way that He will be proud of and would bring Him glory. I want to raise these souls to follow Him and love Him with all of their hearts. I want to inspire them to be giving and considerate to the people around them. I feel desperate to teach them to make good choices and know why they are making them. I want to be more intentional than ever with the time that I have with them. I want to impart to them the complete and total love that I have for them and help them to understand that the Lord loves them even more than that. I want to seize every single opportunity that I have to spend time with them and pour into them.
So, that is what I have been doing. Well, the main thing, anyway... Working to do this job well, yet knowing that I fail at it on a daily basis. Teaching my kids as often as possible that just like them, I am a sinner. Saved by the grace of our Savior. In need of daily mercy and forgiveness.