Reality Check

The baby is quietly sleeping the last leg of his 2 hour nap. I'm puttering around the kitchen making dinner wearing a cute apron. My hair and makeup are done. The house is spotless. When Will wakes up he will be smiling up at me from the crib excited to hang out a little bit before he goes down for bed early. 

That is how I fantasized about motherhood when I was still preggo. 

Cut to reality. My son is screaming. Delilah, our cat, joins in howling. I start sobbing in unison. Our house is a sty. I'm covered in spit up and baby poop (sexy). I'm lucky if I can get my kid to sleep for longer than 45 minutes. Sleeping through the night is just a dream.

Needless to say, this has been a rough season. Nevertheless, I feel like God has been revealing some things in the midst of the chaos (other than the fact that I was delusional about what it was to be a parent). 

1. I had a wrong view of dependence. My baby is what you can call a "needy baby." He is pretty fussy and would rather be held 24/7 than sit in his own seat and play with his toys. I found myself getting frustrated with him and bitter that he wasn't more independent. Then I realized that my relationship to William is a shadow of God's relationship with me. I'm supposed to be needy before God, and he meets my needs. I am dependent on him and he is dependable. 

"Did not I weep for him whose day was hard?
    Was not my soul grieved for the needy?" (Job 30:25)

William is supposed to need me. But unlike God, I'm not dependable. My response to Will's neediness, isn't supposed to be a okay I got this, you're going to be fine. I'm incapable of it. Nor should my response to him be to break down and give up. I'm supposed to cry out to God with my own neediness. As he responds to me with his grace, I'm then able to pour out love and patience to my son. I can't do it without the lord. 

2. I'm reading this book called "When People are Big and God is Small." In chapter 9, the author challenges the view that we need to receive love. He instead argues that we were made to love others and to glorify God in everything we do. It struck me that some of the most significant ways that I can glorify God, are also the ways that I most easily slip into self glorification and pride. This last week I've been constantly checking my heart as I cook, as I sing my son to sleep, etc. Am I making this awesome dinner so Jason will say I have mad chef skills, or because I want to serve my husband and love him? Am I daydreaming about performing in front of a smitten audience when I sing Will to sleep or thinking about the lyrics and what they mean? 

It is pretty revolutionary when you think about it. If I were to always be in the right heart mode about this, I could change thankless diaper after thankless diaper and be completely happy to do it. Obviously, I'm not always in the right heart mode, but slowly but surely I'm growing...

3. Lastly, I'm realizing that the little things I sow now that seem pointless when Will is so oblivious to them, will eventually produce a harvest (I hope). For example, every night, before we put him to sleep, either Jason or I read him a little bit from the Jesus Storybook Bible. Then we recite Psalm 23 (The lord is my shepherd). then we sing him some worship songs as we rock him to sleep. He has no idea what it means now, but some day, because we repeated the gospel to him, we are praying that it will sink in. That he will know who God is because of all the songs and stories. 

Please be praying for our family as we raise our little guy, that we would be patient with him and turn to Jesus. 

Xoxo E


  1. Elizabeth, thank you for sharing the hard times - and not just the fun and exciting moments of parenthood. John and I have a lot to learn as we will soon become parents and we will be praying for your family as we pray for our own!


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