This week I am feeling totally inadequate and unequal to the task of successfully mothering even one child, let alone nine.
Each child has many needs daily: physical, emotional and spiritual. And, with so many, all different ages, it never ends. Early morning, all day, afternoon, evenings, late nights, middle of the night, weekends, holidays...just name a time and I'm usually awake PARENTING or at least plotting or solving problems in my tortured head.
Right now, I'm just feeling...exhausted. How can I manage all of it? There's the busy-ness, yes, the soccer games, the plays, dance class, piano, scouts, orchestra, and on and on. But then there's the more important stuff like, are they having meaningful scripture study each day, do they truly feel valued, do they know where to turn when struggling with personal weaknesses, do they understand that service and gratititude and hard work solves the majority of their problems? Will they feel loved even if they don't agree with their parents politically or religiously? How would I handle that kind of situation?
So much is unknown. Sometimes I feel fear creeping in. It takes all my courage to wrangle my over protective, "helicopter" parent instincts. Luckily, with so many, it's literally impossible for me to be everywhere at once, so the children do have large amounts of time without me hovering. But I am always "hovering" in my heart! Worrying and praying, fasting and scheming, doing all I can from every angle to help them survive, thrive and become confident, happy, well adjusted, KIND, compassionate, faithful, loving and skilled adults.
Last night I walked into the local high school at 9:15 pm, yet another thing I needed to do before bed. I wondered what I was doing there at that time of night. Do these community choir people really need me? Am I ripping off my family even more by investing some time outside of my home? Familiar pangs of guilt set in.
I noticed some people in the lobby, chasing a fussy toddler out of the musical production going on in the auditorium. Another woman was on a cell phone engaged in an animated conversation. I walked down the hall to the choir room where I was going to run a sectional rehearsal for the men. SO many people in just one little corner of the universe. There are so many of us all over the world. We each have so many needs daily! How can our Heavenly Father possibly know us all and love us all? How can He get to every game, be there for every spiritual crisis? I suddenly understood and loved Him in His role as a parent. I loved Him infinitely, in just that one moment. Then, as I entered the room, the whole choir was on their feet, rehearsing an Easter song. It was if they sang it to me, for me. Tears sprang to my eyes. Maybe the community choir doesn't need me, maybe I just need them. I knew that this message was sent to me from a loving Father above. And He sent it in the usual way, through sacred music. I still don't have all the answers to every concern I have as a parent, but I do know that "fear departs when faith endures."
Behold the wounds in Jesus' hands,