Earlier in the week I read of a writing challenge Tuesday at Ten – and thought following this blog may give me some inspiration to write. The week’s theme was “Words to Live by”. I had a few ideas that I pondered on over the week – and yet nothing came together. This morning I read 2 Corinthians 12:9 and my heart clicked: not only was this a central verse to my life as a mum – it was something I felt to dig into today.
About 20 years ago I was struggling with our lifestyle. Peter’s work was taking him away from home for days at a time. When he came home it would often be a quick overnight visit where he would touch base with the family, restock, check the farm and be off again. This wasn’t what I signed up for!! I had 2 little ones at the time.
This feeling of being overwhelmed and exhausted has come at different stages ever since. It wasn’t always because Peter was away. Our daughter Naomi was diagnosed with a tumor and was on 5 months of chemo. This meant leaving my older kids with a dear friend and travelling over 3,000 kilometres every 3 weeks for treatment. It meant weekly treatments at home. It meant extra care as her immune system was low. It was tiring.
There is loneliness as friends leave town, there is betrayal as friends misunderstand, there is sadness as friends walk away.
There has also been issues and conflict that we’ve walked through in our local church situations. These conflicts are devasting and each time have wiped me emotionally, socially and physically.
There have been times when I’ve hit a brick wall and didn’t know how to help Daniel, with limited professional help that understood his situation.
These are the things of life. God doesn’t promise a rose garden, but he does promise: My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.
This promise of Grace has been my main-stay
Over the years this promise has been my main-stay. God’s grace, God’s power is free to work when I am weak. I certainly have been weak! And I have certainly seen God’s power at work.
We often merge the ideas of mercy and grace and it leaves us as forgiven sinners. This is true – we are forgiven, but Jesus rose from the dead, conquering death not just to forgive my sins (his blood, his death was enough for that) but he rose so that I could have life. He sent the Holy Spirit so that I may have his power – his grace.
Grace is the power of the Holy Spirit dwelling in me, to enable me to live like Christ.
I want to be Christ-like in everything I do:
- As a wife
- As a mother
- As a homemaker
- As a homeschooler
- As a friend
- As a neighbour
I know that I have been saved – and I have received the Holy Spirit to be at work in my life. The Holy Spirit
- Transforms my life to the image of Christ – 2 Cor 3:18
- Teaches me – 1 Cor 2:10
- Helps me Pray – Jude 1:20
- Comforts me and gives me peace – Acts 9:31
- Gives me joy (even in the midst of trials) – 1 Thess 1:6
The Bible tells of many other things that the Holy Spirit does, this is just a short list.
If – and when – I rely on God, and his spirit in me, I can do the things that God has for me.
- I can have the strength to deal with my children while my husband is away
- I can have peace while my daughter goes through surgery and treatment
- I can joy even when lonely, I can have compassion to see other people’s hurts and I can have love enough to make new friends.
- I can have forgiveness when others hurt me
- I can have wisdom when I hit a brick wall and don’t know where else to go.
God’s plans for me are to glorify him – not just in the worship sense, though that is of course my heart’s desire to worship Him, but as I depend on Him instead of digging deep into my own reserves – then I am changed, by the power of the Holy Spirit, to be more like Christ. This glorifies him – it doesn’t glorify me.
So today, as I feel depleted, as I feel exhausted, as I feel inadequate and overwhelmed I need to turn to God’s promise:
My grace is sufficient for you,
for my power is made perfect in weakness.
God’s grace: It is more than being forgiven: it is the power to live, becoming more like Christ.
The question I have to ask myself – am I relying on God’s power dwelling inside of me?
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