We live in an age where it is en vogue to complain about our children. I certainly take part in the laughter of the many escapades and light-hearted humor of child-rearing, but when the overwhelming narrative of our culture is: children are a nuisance, we ought to be careful to guard our hearts from this harmful concept. It is so easy for me to slip from lighthearted humor to complaint and discontent if I am not careful.
One of my children has struggled with contentment as of late, and as I was giving instruction on choosing gratitude over discontent I found myself speared by my own words. I realized, I too flirt with discontent in this daily grind of motherhood. Too often I bemoan the interruptions that are inherent in motherhood, instead of seeing them as a glorious God-given gift. These children are ours because they were given to us, they were entrusted to us, and we can either choose to delight in this gift and all its sanctifying interruptions, or we can wallow in discontent. The choice is ours to make daily. Today, I’m trying to choose gratitude, to look at each facet of a moment and find the light that God brings there. As I do, I find I’m overwhelmed with joy and contentment, and delight in this God who gives me today, and meets me each new morning with forgiveness, grace, and his own Spirit to equip me. God’s gifts are always good, even (and often especially when) they don’t submit to our expectations. Children are a gift, may we see them as such. This day is a gift, may we be grateful.
I love the morning,
its pregnant quiet and sleepy plans.
The way the coffee grows cold
over books too good to be set down.
The way the sun slowly turns
skeletal shadows into form
I love the little voices,
the small cry and careful whispers.
The way a raucous of feet
begin the day with a leap.
The way life unfolds with
the clink of a cereal spoon.
I love the afternoon,
its slap of fresh air and lunchtime hunger.
The way the brightness floods the windows
and I marvel at halfway.
The way the body says
it is time to be out of doors!
I love the little dirt scrubbed faces,
begging for one hour more.
The way they eat quickly
with muddy hands.
The way they long to watch
clouds drift importantly
I love the evening,
its settled softness and drifting closed.
The way my body feels used up
over tasks unfinished but somehow done.
The way the sun sinks with a promise
I love the droopy eyes,
the fidgety bodies fighting the dark.
The way their mouths yawn
as they beg for stories
The way they fold into me, a mirror
of when their life began.
I love the day,
Its million tasks and thousand questions.
The way my life is one of being
The way nothing changes, and all at once
we are new.