“The test of the life of a saint is not success, but faithfulness in the human life as it actually is.” – Nov. 16. Oswald Chamber
Life as it actually is. Wow. Does O. C. know what my life is like? Let me paint you, my faithful reader, a little picture with words…..
I wake up to crying (0r screaming) every morning. Sometimes good screaming (only momma’s can relate to the good screaming.) I hop into the shower as they pound on my bedroom door: over and over again. I get dressed, fix my hair, and make my bed in ten minutes flat. Then its off to get them dressed, fix breakfast and start school. I juggle. That’s my life as it actually is. I juggle cleaning the kitchen, practicing math facts, dishing out handwriting advice, and overseeing puzzle building. I juggle the four kids at four different levels of education. One is doing quiet work (which isn’t quiet because let’s face it, he will never be a quiet worker). The other two are fighting while I’m helping another one remember how to tell time on the math worksheet.
Lunchtime. The time of day where everyone argues over what we will eat. I am a dictator, so I make the decisions. I wish someone would come in and dictate my life. Please, someone volunteer to make all of my petty decisions for me. After everyone complains, they end up eating everything. I roll my eyes as they ask for seconds. We clean up lunch, finish up any school work, and I pick up the millions of toys scattered across my living room.
Every single toy they owned comes with exactly 100 pieces. And those pieces are never together. They never are organized in the various color-coded bins I have lined up against the wall. I stuff the toys into the small pink kitchen, and close the pretend refrigerator door. Out of sight, out of mind. After clean-up time (where everyone picks up exactly one half of a toy and mommy picks up the rest), its my favorite time of the day. Nap time. My highest goal in life as it actually is – is for everyone to nap (or be quiet) for at least two hours. It never happens, but I still have it as a goal. I should be realistic. But I’m not. I work, finagle, and juggle them around the house trying to achieve the unattainable.
After nap time is whine-until-dinner-time. Its ok. Dinner time means daddy. Daddy means almost bed time. And bed time means, well, work-time. I do my best work from 9-10pm!
So. Mr. Chambers, do you think I can be faithful as a saint during life as it actually is? Yes, he says to me. Your human life is this. I looked across the table the other day after reading that quote and saw this:
I thought to myself, this is my life. And I cannot wish it away. I cannot wish it to go by faster. I cannot wait to “be a saint” until they are grown. Today is my day to live in faithfulness. To fix the meals. To sit with them, and be patient. It was not a coincidence I read I Cor. 13 that day as well: Love is patient and kind. Just the first two attributes of love are hard to do sometimes. Patience and kindness. That’s it. That’s how I live faithfully.
In the small moments, I will be patient when the four-year-old yells at me that she hates chicken. It seems funny to type that, but when you’ve worked so hard all day to be yelled at by the one you love – it is hard to be patient.
In the small moments, I will be kind. When my child gets hurt because he did the very thing I told him two seconds ago NOT to do, I will be kind. Kind to him, gentle and loving when he had to learn the hard way. The hard way hurts, but I can let him learn his lesson with kindness in my heart.
So my life “as it actually” is can be funny, but it is hard too. So I will be faithful when life is boring, or hard, or mundane, or silly, or complicated, or just plain ordinary. Life as it actually is.……let’s be faithful by just being patient and kind. I think I can manage that….what about you?
If you would like help in your ordinary life – finding peace and joy – check out my new Bible study! My passion is to encourage you as you walk with the Lord – TODAY!
Order your copy here.
The Glorious Ordinary invites you to study God’s Word in your everyday life! A 9-week Bible study designed to do individually or in a group setting. Check out what other people are saying here.