I came across a scripture the other day that caught my attention. It is a scripture I have read before, in fact even memorized with my kids for VBS one summer.
“Wow, this sounds like something I have been saying to my kids a lot lately”.
This is what the Lord says—your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel:
“I am the Lord your God, who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go. (Isaiah 48:17 NIV84)
The verses leading up to this describes a stubborn Israel. I think I have an idea of what God might be thinking as he goes on to say in verse 18 "if only you had paid attention to my commands, your peace would have been like a river...”.
You see, there are a lot of things I know. You could say as a mom, there are certain things it's my job to know.
- I know when the temperature drops below 45 degrees my kids should wear hat, gloves, and a scarf. Walking to school will not be fun without them.
- I know my kids need to be in bed by 8pm, my 4 year old by 7pm because they need their sleep! It's hard to get them out of bed in the morning, tired little ones cry easily.
- I know what makes a balanced meal, proper nutrition gives the kids the energy they need to make it through a day of school, sports and other activities. Not only that but too many sweets are not good for the tummy.
- I know that some things on TV, despite the fact they are disguised as cartoons, may not be appropriate for little eyes and ears.
Unfortunately my years of experience have not convinced my children that mommy knows best.
Thinking they know better than me they push back and give me a hard time in these areas in particular. They don't trust my judgment. Every once in a while I let them make the own choices only too happy to take advantage of the teachable moments that inevitably follow.
In other words I get to say "I told you so".
I certainly don't get everything as a mom right but it's at times like these that pride usually sets in and I get overly confident in my own abilities and wisdom.
Reading the scripture this time around challenged me to ask myself
“In what areas, like my children, do I operate in my own wisdom and insist making my own choices?" "When do I push back?" "Am I trusting my creator or trusting in myself?"
It wasn't surprising what came to mind...Taking time to rest; keeping the Sabbath.
- I think if I get more done during the day I will be happy. God knows I won't. The feeling will be fleeting and the same cycle will start in the morning.
- I think that every minute my kids are at school should be filled with errands, appointments, or just getting something done because once they are home the chance to do those things is gone. God knows I need a break before everyone is home and I start my “second shift”.
- I think I can relax if I finish just one more thing. God knows not everything is needful right this moment and busyness does not add value. (Think Mary and Martha.)
God knows what's best for me. He created me in his image (Genesis 1:27), to work and then rest (Genesis 2:2). If he created me he knows how my body and mind work, what it needs.
Better to readjust now than be on the other end of an "I told you so" moment, with a short temper, burnt out or laid up due to exhaustion.
So now what? Commit to taking one day a week off, yes off! Pray as I look over my to-do list each day, be open to detours and look for signals from the Holy Spirit to take a break or slow down.
Speaking of…I am going to take a break now and watch a little TV with my kids