Broken to be Rebuilt

Broken to be rebuilt. That’s what comes to mind when I think about what God is doing in my life right now.

You’d think (or at least I did) that being a stay-at-home mom would be some special kind of awesome. Um, yeah, maybe I will get there eventually, but let me just be real with you for a sec and say I don’t feel fulfilled in motherhood like 95% of the time. Early on I had resolved to make sure that my kids were not my “everything”. Jesus should be my “everything” and I don’t want to raise children who think that they are the center of any world, including my own. But somehow here I am, frustrated as heck that my son has his own will and that it clearly is not in line with mine. So despite my good intentions, it sure seems like he is what daily life revolves around, or at least what my emotions are revolving around. Can he not just eat the food AT the table, or say “more please” like he used to??? I had grown accustomed to his personality and now it seems to be changing again. Things I used to enjoy doing with him apparently are no longer his cup of tea. Stellar. So now that I realize this little human is driving me mad, I’ve also realized that I have quickly failed at being reliant only on Christ. I have my own set of demands and standards, and when I am unable to meet them I feel like a total failure.

Fail-ure.

caricaIn the last few months, that is what comes to mind every morning when I wake up, every night when I lay down, and many of the moments in between. If I can’t get my kid to stop throwing a temper tantrum when he can’t eat the yogurt in the dairy aisle, then what the hell am I doing calling myself a mother?? Clearly my creative problem-solving skills are no match for a toddler. Every act of defiance in him feels like a slap in the face to me; another reminder that I am just not measuring up to the glamorous cover of Pregnancy and Newborn this month.

And I guess that this is my default mode of operation. I often feel like I am botching it as a wife, a mother, a friend, and a Christian. And you know what…it’s because I am. Newsflash, my awesome Loft sweater and hipster scarf are just not quite cutting it at softening my unmistakable lacking. I notice my failures, and maybe it’s okay if everyone else does too.

Paul in one of his letters to the church of Corinth wrote: (2 Cor 12:9) “But he [God] said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”

I am weak. I fail. I regularly demand something of myself and others that only God was intended to provide. He brings comfort, peace, patience and grace. He wants me to abide in Him…to stop trying to perform. Really?? I can just be like, “Hey Target shoppers, the screaming kid in front of me having a meltdown over yogurt is just one of the 5638 opportunities God is providing me TODAY to showcase his power and grace as I walk out of here with a child who is still breathing! Sure, one could say that I’m failing to contain my kid’s outbreak, but I prefer to look at this as being super successful as a poster-child for God’s mercy and goodness. Bam.” ???

Yes. The gospel says that I can quit trying to maintain some mask of perfection. I can be real…with God, with my husband, with my son, my small group, and all the poor Target bystanders. His grace is sufficient for me. He fulfills me because he made me so that nothing else aside from him could. And now, he is using the idols in my life, the controlling and selfish nature I often give into, to break me. Like the hundred or so Legos that are hidden in my couch cushions and heater floorboards, so also I am finding where my identity is misplaced and well-hidden. Not because God wants me to feel horrible about myself, but because he wants me (and everyone else) to know that it is his grace alone that provides for my every need. He, and only He, is sufficient. His glory abounds. It isn’t my good work, but his good work within me and through me!

So right now I feel broken, but I know it’s because God loves me enough to bring me through that painful process and rebuild me into someone who delights in Him more than I delight in anything, or anyone, else.

Carica Onyshuk

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