“Mommy’s done, it’s time for bed. Stay. In. Bed.”
Those are words I’ve said more than once to my five-year-old. The other two boys (two & nine months) are good sleepers, but my five-year-old likes to test limits and see just how many questions he can ask and requests he can make right at bedtime. The longer this goes on, the more spent and impatient I become. Some nights are better than others. But in the midst of it I’m thinking “I have no more to give today… it’s all used up.” Once he does drift off to sleep sweet relief comes and I have a couple hours to myself and with my husband. We’ve come to cherish this time. But some (most) days I just feel like sitting on the couch to check emails, watch TV with my husband or just get a hot bath and go to bed!
It used to be that spending time with Jesus and having a devotional time was something else on my to-do list. It looked something like this: pick up milk and eggs, wash sheets, email mom, devotional time. And sadly, most days everything else got completed on my to-do list except spending time with my Creator. My Creator! The One who made me, the One who saved me and the One who gives me the strength I need each and every day. How could I neglect my time with Him?
Since that time in my life I’ve come to realize that I didn’t know what I was missing by not spending time with Jesus regularly. I didn’t realize that the more I intentionally spent time with Him, the closer we’d become, the more I’d hear His voice and the more I’d see Him working in my life. My priorities have since changed and I never want to go back to that place in my life where Jesus was last on my list!
We, as mothers, are pulled in so many directions, all the time. Someone or some thing is constantly needing from us… with three kids ages five and under I’m needed all day. From the time those sleepy eyes open, until the time the last bottle and/or sip of water is given. If I’m not connected with Jesus throughout the day and intentional about my time with Him and about being in constant prayer, then my family gets the grumpy leftovers of me come bedtime.
I’m reminded of Ephesians 6:7, “Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not people.” I’m committing this verse to memory so that when my five-year-old needs one more drink or one more story or one more hug, I will freely and gladly give it as if serving the Lord and remind myself that through my service and love, my children are seeing Him. I have to rely on the Lord’s strength for this, not my own. He never tells us “This is all I have to give.”