By Cheri Fuller
What a privilege and gift it is to be our children's mothers. Don't you just love these little--or big -- cuties that God picked out of all the kids in the world for us to nurture? Yet along with the honor comes so many chores and responsibilities: preparing meals, running a household, supervising homework, carpooling kids to activities and sports, volunteering at school, tucking children in bed at night, church activities, perhaps juggling a job--and starting over the next day to do it again.
Mom, do you have more to do than you can manage sometimes? Do you operate into overdrive? You're not alone. Over 30 million women, doctors say, suffer from an epidemic disorder of the 21st century called "hurry-up sickness." Like the mother I know who was preparing lunch in the kitchen. Her little boy followed her around as usual, telling a long story about something that happened on the playground at kindergarten. All the while his distracted, preoccupied mother bustled around. She threw in a load of clothes, then picked things up, whipped up a salad for two girlfriends about to arrive any minute for lunch, and made two phone calls, all in the space of fifteen minutes.
"Mommy, are you listening?" her young son pleaded.
"Sure, honey, I'm listening..." she answered as she hurriedly poured the iced tea. Again he started the story.
"Mommy, are you listening?" he pleaded again.
Finally the precious five-year-old tugged on his mother's pants' leg until she got down on his eye level. "But, Mommy, would you listen with your face?"
As children of our Father God, He too longs for us to listen with our face and heart--to have times in which we give him our full attention and focus. You may have a schedule like Martha, the busy sister in the Bible (see Luke 10:41-42). By the way, I love Marthas; they get so much done. They plan and coordinate retreats and parties. They serve at school and church. We couldn't do without them! But you can develop a heart like her sister Mary who made it a priority and took time to focus on listening to Jesus. You will be blessed when He shows you His love and gives you the wisdom and creative ideas you need to guide your children and solve problems as they pop up.
God's Word promises, "Call to me and I will answer you. I'll tell you marvelous and wondrous things that you could never figure out on your own." Jeremiah 33:3, The Message. That verse is called God's Private Telephone Number." Call it often and don't forget to listen for the answers!
Here are a few ways busy moms can begin to de-stress, calm your heart, and focus on God's presence:
Make space for the Lord. Take some intentional "quietening" time during the day to connect with God and listen, even you only start with five to ten minutes before the family awakens or after they go to bed. Read the Bible, a devotional, and talk to God about your greatest concerns.
See the everyday blessings God gives you as moments to connect with him and thank him for your child's smile, the softness of a newborn baby's skin, a brilliant sunset. Stroll a path in your neighborhood intent on listening to the Lord's voice or consider your drive time after work as a time to turn off talk radio and tune into His voice.
Breathe! As you take a hot bath or shower, breathe slowly and deeply, relaxing your mind and body. Be aware of your senses and ask the Holy Spirit to create in you a "clean heart" (Psalm 51:10) and empower you just as the water cleanses your body.
As you do these simple things, you'll find your mind and spirit will be renewed and refreshed, more able to handle mothering and life.
(Use only with permission of author.)
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