Stumbling? Who's stumbling? I'm doing fi....DOH! Excuse me while I pick myself up off the floor.
Like Beth says, I've stumbled so many times that sometimes I don't even feel like getting up and trying again. It's nice to know that I'm not the only one.
James 3:2 "We all stumble in many ways..."
That was the theme of one of the speakers at the Focus on Marriage simulcast last weekend that Vince and I attended. It is refreshing to know that we all have things in our lives that make us stumble. We don't have to hide them like we so often try to do. At least I do. The older I get (did I just say "the older I get"? sheesh!) the more I value being real. Either that or I'm just too tired to fake it. It takes far more energy to put on a smile and pretend that everything is "fine" and to hide those ugly little things that I don't want others to see about me.
One of the biggest stumbling blocks in my life has always been allowing myself to get overwhelmed. I see everything that has to be done, or everything that isn't working, and I feel like it's impossible and I shut down. I look at all of the books on my bookshelf that I haven't yet read. Books on parenting, relationships, and my own spiritual growth...all of which I am sure I need to read in order to be the mom, the wife, the woman of God that I am supposed to be. I can't decide which one to read because I need to read them all, today! I need to know whatever is in those books now! But I can't seem to find the time, so what do I do? I don't read any. I look at all of the struggles that our blending family faces on a daily basis and sometimes it gets the best of me. Will we ever feel like a whole family? I look at everything that needs to be done around the house - the housework, the projects - things that the kids need and want from me...that's when Vince finds me flopped face down on our bed in the middle of the afternoon. (This may or may not be preceded by the announcement to everyone within earshot that I am going crazy).
Do you see a pattern here? God does too, and He's been working on healing that in me for a very long time. I think I'm starting to get it.
In my job, working with children with autism, it can be very easy to feel overwhelmed. When I look at a child who has so many challenges in his/her life, it is hard to know where to start. But the purpose in my work is to take two or three, or even just one area that is presenting the biggest challenge to the child, and just work on that. We can't work on everything all at once. I would be overwhelmed and so would the child, and we really wouldn't accomplish anything. Ding!
God is using my job to teach me this lesson...just take things one day at a time. One step at a time. Sometimes one breath at a time. And the best part? I don't have to do it on my own! God wants me to rely on Him. He and I both know that I will mess things up if I don't.
John 15:5 "...apart from me you can do nothing."
So, I'm going to go to my bookshelf and pick out one book, just one. And I'm going to read it and not worry about if I should be reading one of the other ones first. I'm going to do one load of laundry at a time...hug one child at a time...focus on one day at a time. And if, no, when I stumble, I will let God give me the "want to" to get up and keep going!