Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The Paradox

There are some great theoretical issues that fall under the category of paradox.  Things that seem to contradict but in reality do make sense.  Among these great paradoxes are God being one and three, free will and predestination, God being able to do ALL things except sin.  For me, there is one more great one that I have learned this year and that is being a wonderful mother and a horrible mother all at the same time.  Now don't get me wrong, I don't have any unreasonable insecurities of my mothering skills, just a realistic analysis of them.  As my mom friends will probably tell you, being a mom is the single greatest experience and blessing bestowed on us, but also the craziest and most difficult!!  It is nothing short of insanity for us to think we can raise children without at some point potentially screwing them up.  Because of this it is nothing short of divine intervention that all children aren't completely deranged!!!

They say that when you get married, your flaws are magnified.  This is true times a thousand as a parent.  Impatience, inability to handle high levels of stress, anger problems, selfishness, whatever your great fault might be, it becomes a neon blinking beacon, resting brightly atop your head for, what seems like the whole world, to see!  I was naive enough to believe that the love you feel for you child would overcome all my own faults and I would be a super great mom.  That love, as pure and unconditional it is, does NOT magically change your faults, much to my disappointment about two days after bringing Caleb home. 

On top of your own faults to contend with, you are also bombarded with all the Dos and Don'ts generously given to you by every mother and mother-want-to-be.  "Get your baby on a schedule," "let the baby operate on it's own time," "only breast milk," "formula is just as good," "don't pick the baby up all the time," "Never let the baby cry"...horrible mommy.  The truth I have found is that I can't do it, not by myself anyway.  God gave us the amazing responsibility to give birth to and raise up children.  An impossible task.  But as we learn in His word that though impossible for us as mere humans, nothing is impossible for the Creator of the Universe!! 

So as I have learned to deal with the guilt of losing patience at times and loving that the 15 minutes of a shower that I get (not even every day!) as a mini vacation, those feelings don't make me a wonderful or horrible mother, they just make me human!  I believe God gave us this sacred responsibility so that we would have to depend even more on His strength and trust Him with a children.  We dedicate our children as a demonstration of our commitment to raise them up in God's word but also as a way to say "God, I can't do it, only you can.  Apart from you, I will probably traumatize this precious child for life!" 

Despite all my motherly affection and best efforts, I know the only hope for my precious boy to grow up to be the man I hope him to be and, most importantly, the man God wants him to be, I have to put him before God's mighty thrown and let God raise him.  All I can really do is pray and allow God to use me in whatever ways He will! 

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Neck Deep But Not Yet Drowning

As the world has gone deeper and deeper into the wide world of technology, I have managed to get probably waist deep into it all but have managed to save myself from getting completely swept away with the tide by abstaining from certain things, blogging being one of them.  As I may be subjecting myself to the deep end of things, risking drowning completely, I am going to attempt this.  I mainly managed to steer clear of this alternate form of wasting time by just not really having much to say, and honestly, I still may not have much to say.  But I believe this year I am going to learn more lessons that any other time in my life and grow more than I have ever before, between rebuilding a marriage and raising a child.  And hopefully God can use this as a way to use me to minister to others and help others to understand who exactly our Heavenly Father is.  So, here we go...

As my family and good friends will tell you, 2012 has been the best and worst year of my life.  Starting in the end of 2011 with the birth of my beautiful and amazing son, Caleb.

I always knew I wanted to be a mother but had no idea how fantastic and difficult it truly is.  I have learned how much I am capable of love and sacrifice but also how patient I am not and how much I like to be in control.  I get the privilege of succeeding and failing every day.  I am having my faults tested everyday but also becoming better and stronger.  So many people say when you have kids, you can't even remember what life was like before them.  I can't say that I feel that way.  I remember what life was like before him but it was not nearly as entertaining!

In December, my husband of 7 1/2 years, Wes, left (I won't go into all the gory and personal details, ultimately it boils down to we both lost sight of our Heavenly Father and our marriage was almost the greatest casualty as a result) and Caleb and I moved to my Dad and Step-mom's in sunny Arizona.  This may seem like a cold thing to do to Wes, but I couldn't have raised a 5 week old on my own at that time and needed the support of my family.  God brought me to the desert (both physically and spiritually) so I could deeply experience Him in my life.  It was the most learning and growing I had done in just three short months!  I clung heavily to Jeremiah 29:11, knowing that He had a plan for me and all I needed was to be obedient to Him.  I drew near to Him and, as promised, He drew near to me. 

In March, God laid it on my heart to send an email to Wes, allowing God to use me to show him His forgiveness and redeeming love.  Truly only God could have accomplished all He did at this time.  I have said and will continue to say that full credit and glory goes to the big man for bringing Wes and I to the place we are now. 

So two big moves and 6 months later, Caleb and I are back in Arkansas, Caleb still has his daddy, and I am still married to a truly great man.  Now I am not going say that every person I love would use such kind language about my husband, but I can tell you that no matter how great the person, they still fail.  It is greatness to admit your failings and strive to do better.  It takes an incredible amount of strength, courage, and humility to try to make right what you have put wrong.  God has created that greatness in Wes.

I don't know yet what God's plan for our marriage is yet, but I can say with great certainty that whatever His plan is, if one person comes to a deeper understanding of who are great, loving, and personal God is, it will have been worth everything we have been through.  So, commencing this blogging experience, I hope I can share the journey of restoration and parenthood, though I am sure yet I would recommend going through them both at the same time!