Giving Thanks (inspired by)


Thanks be to God, Father, Son and Spirit, for the abundance of good things he pours on His children.
We are but few, but His blessings are many.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Something they don't teach you in mom school

 Drink 8 glasses a day, and more when you are nursing, but beware, mommy, this too can be dangerous!

When life gets busy and your arms fly around to the kitchen tending to everyone's needs and you suddenly remember to tend to your own needs....


 
Look before you drink!

Shrinky- dink water.  Flavorless, but a little gritty.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Alpha kitchen buddy

Behold, wise big brother, I spy another strange thing.  See, this youngest of all the brothers, this tiny one who cannot scheme nor plot nor bend mother's ear with an argument, this runt has procured for himself a treat most delectable.  Tell me, older brother, how is it that he feasts on the sugary sweet gifts of angels, while mother attempts to pacify us with mere twigs of the earth?




Indeed, young apprentice, the injustices of this life are difficult to bear.  Mother gives us an offering called "granola," while in front of our very eyes bestowing the richest blessings of the cupboards upon the small one. Take heart, brother, for God will repay the wicked, and will make her answer for her deeds.  Let us now humble ourselves, and inquire of the small one, for perhaps he has not yet learned to guard his precious secrets.  Perhaps he will reveal to us the secret key to the bounty of the pantry.



Brothers, are you so foolish?  Do you imagine that the power I have over our mother can be stolen like a rattle from my hand?   God has again used what is of no account in this world to shame those who think themselves wise.    In my fat thighs and round belly I store the power to charm the mother.  My soft skin and baby smell uplift her mood like wine!  A smile, a giddy inhale, or a mere flash of my dimple can cause her to forsake even the IPOD for me.  I may be small, but what I have can never be taken from me. 


Bow down brothers.
I am the baby.







Sunday, March 27, 2011

Kicking it in

When I ran track in high-school, middle-distance was my "specialty."  This was not my choice, but it was my lot, because I was not built to sprint, and I was too wimpy to train harder for long distance. So by default, the half mile became my race.

I was in terribly good shape at that time, and I remember running at nearly full speed for that entire half mile. I remember the muscle fatigue, the absolute exhaustion and burning lungs that seemed to persist through the whole race. I remember getting a little dizzy and feeling the temptation to slow down. I remember the rock that marked the spot where I was told to "kick it in," the last 150 yards of the race where I was supposed to draw on strength from who knows where and go even faster when what I really wanted to do was lay down on the soft grass.

The rock meant it's almost over!!!! and so was a welcomed sight. Yet it also meant one last burst of energy, muscle pain everywhere, and becoming so tired my eyes no longer wanted to focus. The final efforts squeezed the absolute last drops of energy out of me, until finally, the finish line, the collapse, and the eventual catching of breath.

What made me think of this experience this week?  My evenings.  That last bit, between about 7pm and 830.  The end of dinner has become my new "rock," the moment of time that shouts "your're almost there!" and encourages me to pour out the last drops of energy for the last 100.  Minutes, that is.  Until I can collapse.

My list after dinner: kitchen cleaned, coffee ready for tomorrow, baths perhaps, 6 children in PJs, three in diapers, teeth brushed, clothes out for tomorrow, lunches packed, checking homework, buddies located, music on, closet doors closed, night lights on, "hug kiss and tucks," breaking up the last few fights, and then finally, quiet.

By the close of dinner, I am out of words, or at least I would like to be. I have kept pace with the kid chatter all day long and I just feel like there are no words left inside me at all. Yet as we go through our list, their words continue to bombard me.

"Mommy we forgot to do my word cards! Can you do them with me?"
"Marcus dumped water on the floor mommy!"
"Mommy where is my Curious George?"
"Mommy daddy's reading to Eldon, can you read to me?"
"Can we wrestle?"
"Mommy! He's watching me put my PJs on MAKE HIM STOP!"
"Can we go to the park?" No, it's dark out. "Can we go tomorrow?"
"Someone didn't flush the potty!"
"Can we watch a movie?" No. "OK then can we tomorrow?
"I can't open the toothpaste!"
"Can we paint?" No. "OK then can we tomorrow?  When?"
"Eldon bit me again Mommy!"
"Mommy when can we go to Michigan again?"
"Mommy look at this beautiful picture! Can we send it to grammy pammy right now?"
"Mommy can we listen to the story about the flower girl?"
"Mommy can you brush my hair? Button my PJs? Find my blanket? Kiss me, tuck me, tickle me?"

Inside I say to myself, "You can do it, just a little bit more, you're almost there, just a couple more things, the house will be quiet soon... kick it in kick it in kick it in!"

But it's not like track.  Yes, I am exhausted.  Yes, it would be more efficient and I would get to collapse sooner if I rushed through the last part of the night as quickly as possible.  But it is no longer just about getting a good time.

It's about finishing the race with kindness.  With grace.  Tucking them in and sharing their giggles, and saying "I love you" in a way that actually communicates "I love you" and not "Oh please, just stop talking now."  To me, this is about as natural as running with grace, or even worse, cheerleading.


God, give me strength for that last hour of the day!  Give strength to my muscles and to my heart, and teach me to finish the race of the day with grace!  I need to borrow all of it from You!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Yo mama.


Some people are just born cool.


Thursday, March 24, 2011

Praise like an Aggie!

As Aggie has her MRI today,
I think of her, pray for her,
and praise God for every moment of life with her.
The Lord is good to us!


Praise the LORD
Praise the LORD, my soul.
I will praise the LORD all my life;
I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.

Do not put your trust in princes,
in human beings, who cannot save.

When their spirit departs, they return to the ground;
on that very day their plans come to nothing.

Blessed are those whose help is the God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the LORD their God.

Psalm 146:1-5


Praise the LORD!

How good it is to sing praises to our God,
how pleasant and fitting to praise him!

The LORD builds up Jerusalem;
he gathers the exiles of Israel.

He heals the brokenhearted
and binds up their wounds.

Psalm 147:1-3


Let them praise his name with dancing
and make music to him with tambourine and the harp.

For the Lord takes delight in his people;
he crowns the humble with salvation.

Let the saints rejoice in this honor and sing for joy in their beds.
Psalm 149:3-5



Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Peace like an Aggie


On the baptism of sweet Avner Lawson Grubaugh, a new church tradition was born...

It was a private baptism, and so we all gathered around the font.  Our six children plus four young cousins; the kids wiggled and whispered during the short service.


At the very end, the pastor prayed that the peace of Christ would be with us all, and then encouraged us to share that peace with one another.

Little did he know, the shaking of hands does not happen to be the tradition in our church.  When he bent down to offer his  hand to Aggie, her eyes began to dance as if this were the signal that the horrible sitting-still part of the service was over.  

She smiled, wound up, and gave the pastor an enoramous high-five!



Welcome to the family, sweet Avner!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Pretty little checkmarks, all in a row

Sometimes it feels like God gives me too much freedom. When I am feeling the pull of ten different things, unable to give myself fully to any one, and feeling like every priority is getting too little of my attention, well, I would really just like a list. Not just general guidelines, not only ten commandments, but a detailed list. I want something like this:

Emily's to-dos today

Thou shalt remove thyself from bed when the first child calls. Feed, dress the children, and line them up neatly in front of educational television.


Thou shalt spend ten minutes with God and coffee.


Thou shalt work in kitchen for 1 1/2hrs, in three 1/2hr intervals, and no more.


Thou shalt use ten of the minutes I have given thee to catch up with current events


Tho shalt endure 18 knock-knock jokes, but thou canst redirect the child that bringeth the 19th


Thou shalt change each of the 17 diapers that are presented to you this day.

Thou shalt entertain children for 4 hours, educational activites consuming the better half.


Thou shalt exercise thyself and children for one hour.


Thou shalt spend no more than two hours on other housework, laundering thy towels and ordering the disorder visited upon thee by thy children.


Thou shalt snuggle thy children for 10 minutes, three times, afterwhich thee may excuse thyself to do your other jobs.


Thou shalt converse with thine husband for at least 60 minutes.


Thou shalt spend 20 minutes talking about God to children, reading this specific Scripture passage, praying, and bearing the nonsensical questions that are presented you in this time frame. After those minutes have passed, thou shalt send them off to bed.


If thou has completed the above tasks and are still without sin, thou may indulgest thyself in telephone or computer-facilitated socializing. Then, get thyself to bed by ten.

I am sure the list would be long and tiresome, but at least it would be clear! If I had a nice checklist like this, at least THEN I could look at all the things still undone at the end of the day and shrug, "oh well! God didn't tell me to do it so it is not my problem!" And I could go before Him with all those nice little checkmarks in a row and say, "Here's my report, Lord! I got it all done! Now give me some good sleep tonight please, and I'll see you tomorrow!"

But there is NO LIST! No black and white job description for me, and as far as I can tell, you don't get one either.

What does that leave me with? God's Word, and the Holy Spirit, and a bunch of demands, and a sinful heart that gets in the way when I try to sort all of this out. There is generous amount of freedom, and a great deal of gray.

And at the end of the day, there are things left undone, and the things that were done were done by me, a sinner, and I see even my best is tainted.

No checkmarks, no gold star. Just me. I come to God at the end of the day with the things I have done, and in His light I see there is not much to be boasting about. "Um, here you go Lord. It's a pencil holder... I think. Or maybe a coffee cup? I guess it's not at all finished, and I'm not sure what it is going to be...and I messed up in a few places. So there you have it... it is what it is... and I'm tired Lord."

Me, commiting the demands of the day, my efforts and my failures, to Him.

No pretty checklist to make me feel good about myself.

Just a lopsided sculpture that may or may not be a pencil holder.


My head does not rest at night comforted by what I have done. And yet by God's grace, what I have done and what I have left undone is taken from me by Jesus.

I am not sure what He does with all the gray; I cannot picture exactly what it is He is making.

I do know that He takes the black, the ugly sin, and hides it in His own wounds.

And then, He takes whatever remains of my lopsided creation, and He uses it for my good and the good of His people.

Then finally, He looks on me with pity, and gives me something concrete that I am to do with myself:

"Daughter, go, sleep in peace."




But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith.



Philippians 3:7-9

 

Friday, March 18, 2011

chop chop

I can't do it all!  I think I am starting to believe this!  Once again I have found myself with too many things on my list, and something must be done.

Loose ends!  Loose ends, everywhere!  It is time for spring cleaning!   Some loose ends will be tied up, but others will be hunted down, and mercilessly chopped off.

Apparently a multi-stage craft is one of those things all of which I simply cannot do. The children and I started to make penguins in December.  Now it is March.  The unfinished penguin bellies on the back porch, and the uncut would-be feet and wings in the kitchen, and the half painted penguin heads in the craft area, whisper their guilt-inducing taunts at me still.

"Don't you think I would be a nice gift for grandma?"

"Can't you make just a little time to do a craft with the big kids and finish us already?"

"You let the kids paint us, so now you can't even recycle us!"

"Is it really that hard to glue on some eyes? I'm dying here!"

"Did you make the kids fill us up with sand so we could sit around headless all winter?"

It hit 70 degrees yesterday. Penguin season has passed us by.

It is time to silence them. Unfinished, ungiven, unloved.

Penguins were never meant to be part of this family. Goodbye penguins. We are moving on to spring.




Thursday, March 17, 2011

pigs and little boys

Little boys and pigs have so much in common!  





To my surprise, I found a kindred spirit among the pigs too!

I am not one who normally sympathizes with animals, especially smelly ones, but I could not help but relate to this mother pig.  I saw her laying there with her head in the food trough while nine little piglets nursed on her.  And a moment later I heard a huge snort from another mother pig, telling her babies to BACK OFF as she flopped over onto her enormous belly.

Self, it could be worse!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

quick note on Japan

Pastor Harrison, who has had years of experience with disaster relief, shared his thoughts on Issues, Etc. 

A bit of his wisdom:  At a time like this, we all wonder, "What can we do?"  He encourages the obvious, give to Japan of course, but also reminds us to turn our feelings of giving/charity to our own homes; our own neighbors, our own family, our own community.

Lord help us to do this!

For the full podcast click here

It's not a cage exactly...

When the kitchen floors are much too dirty for the sweet baby, try this:


Of course, this assumes a few things:

1.  You have a clean laundry basket

2.  You have some clean tupperware or whatnot for him to chew on

3.. He is strong enough to support his head when he suddenly zooms forward.  Why would he suddenly zoom, you ask?  Because, I say, what looks like a laundry basket/baby holder to a mommy, is OBVIOUSLY a race car to older siblings.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Through daddy's eyes

I love those moments when I get a glimpse of the way the kids see the world. I just don't think like a kid any longer, so I am constantly surprised by their perpective.  But it was my husband, not my children, that surprised me with his perspective yesterday.


"He's got the whole world, in His hands...." sang Seth in the van.

Being both parents and nerds, my husband and I smiled at Seth's cuteness, then proceeded to discuss the more obvious issue:

Is that song gramatically correct?


He HAS GOT the whole world in His hands!? Good concept, bad use of the English language!

Josh sighed.

"Don't worry honey, it's not as bad as the other song I'm teaching them," I smiled. "You know, the song The Devil Ain't Nuthin?"


He sucked in his breath and tried to keep his eyes on the road. "Um... You're not... You're kidding, right?"


I am not sure what this says about me, but I think it is fantastic that he actually had to make sure about that.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Peace like a baby

The nappers were napping, or quiet if not
Dinner was simmering in the crock-pot
Big sisters in school, big brothers in bed
Small baby upon me, warm, happy, and fed

His breaths whispered softly, my shoulder was sodden,
But my lists and my worries were quickly forgotten.
I sat there with Peter, we sat there we two,
and I said, "How I love having nothing to do!"

See the plants- how they wither!  The  laundry- how smelly!
The puddles of milk and the splatters of jelly!
On the couches, the blobs and the boogers were showing
But the baby upon me, how fast was he growing!

Ignoring demands of the clutter and mess,
I stroked his soft head, and in quiet, was blessed,
to be warmed by new life, as with the sun's ray,
to simply be mommy for one moment today.



Go Tigers!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

kid worries

Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, 
what you will eat or drink; 
or about your body, what you will wear. 
Is not life more than food, 
and the body more than clothes? 
Matthew 6:25

Do you kids ever worry about what you are going to eat or what you are going to wear?

Aggie immediately chimes in:
(Read the following very quickly for the full effect.)

"YES!  Sometimes I worry about what I'm going to drink, but that's not a good thing to do.  Because if you say 'Mommy what are we going to drink? and she says 'chocolate milk,'  and then you say, 'Mommy what are we doing to drink?' and she says, 'chocolate milk,' and you say, 'Mommy, what are we going to drink?' and she says, 'chocolate milk' ....  then mommy won't really like that."

Ok... anything else that you worry about children?

"Sometimes, I worry about what I am going to wear..."
said one of the more thoughtful children seriously.

Finally,  I thought, we will have some worthwhile contribution to this discussion!

"...I worry about what I am going to wear because one time I didn't have enough underwear in my drawer so I had to borrow some.  I didn't like to do that. So I worry."




(The fruit of my labeling fun can now be seen on the sides of the blog.  Happy reading!)



Friday, March 11, 2011

Fragility

How fragile is this life.  How vulnerable those we love to death, destruction, and so many things out of our control.  How can you not be reminded of this on a day like today, witnessing the devastation in Japan?

I wish I could forget.  I wish it were not so.

Is that the way I will meet my end?  If not, how will it go for me?  I remember all too much that I am dust.

Aggie is in bed early tonight, with the bug that Eldon has had all week.  I snuggled her to sleep for the first time in a long time, and could not help but remember her days of epilepsy as I laid there with her.  My dear, fragile Aggie, how will it go with you?  I remember that you are dust.

It is easy to feel secure in this life when things are normal.  And then suddenly, one quick moment comes, and normal vanishes.  What, then, is left?

There is only one hope for we who are walking dust.  If we have a God, and if He is a forgiving God and a loving God, then all can never be lost.

In Christ, even sinners sleep secure, even dust breathes in life.



As a father has compassion on his children, 

   so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him; 

for he knows how we are formed, 

Psalm 103:13-14

   he remembers that we are dust. 

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Interesting podcast on Ash Wednesday

This is an interesting podcast on Ash Wednesday.  The rich symbolism is fascinating to me; and I love how the practice of the imposition of ashes is described as "a sermon" in itself. There is also some commentary on fasting (an issue I have always been quite confused about) that I found helpful.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

ash wednesday

Ash wednesday is here again, and it is still just as hard on this mother's heart as it has ever been.

It is an odd thing for Christians to take time out to observe this kind of holiday. I do not believe I have seen a secular adaptation of Ash Wednesday at Walmart.   The world may be able to make its own version of Fat Tuesday, Easter and Christmas by subtracting substance and adding bright colors and materialism, but it is hard, even for the best marketing experts, to make a holy day that focuses on our mortality something that will sell.

Today my little girls will come home from school with ashes on their heads.  They will have heard those words,  "From dust you are, to dust you shall return." They will have heard them from the lips of their own father, and have received a reminder of this awful truth from the same hand that feeds them.  They will sport the black reminder of it on their foreheads all day long, but it will likely be forgotten to them, as they rush home to show me their special papers and cheerfully devour whatever it is I set out for an after-school snack.

But I will not forget.  The ashes on those pretty young heads shout to me, and tell me things I would rather not hear.  Especially those ashes smudged on the forehead of Aggie, whose life we will never take for granted.  Will her tumor return this year?  Will she return to dust even before I do?

This holiday cannot be sold without Jesus.  This reality, death itself, cannot be conquered without Him.  But He has conquered it for us, and with the church we look forward to the day when fear and dread will be no more. 

And so, even on this holiday of death, even in this world covered in death, we can sleep in peace.  Whether we are speaking of sleep in our beds or sleep in the grave, we take refuge in the one place that is safe:  in the blood of our Savior, Jesus Christ, poured out for our sins.

I shall lie down and sleep in peace, 
for You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.
Psalm 4:8



Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Today, we just survived!

Mommy, my tummy hurts so bad!  My tummy wants you to come and sit by me!




It has been a long and germ-filled day in the Cook house today.  Nothing like a little bit of sickness to remind me how selfish I am!  Nothing serious, just a bit of stomach flu for some, horrid coughs for others, pneumonia for the pastor, and cooped-up super energy for the ones without the ailments.  When the germs hit, I start out sympathetic and doting, but add in a headache for mama, and forget it! I am just plain all out of compassion by the end of the day! (Before the end of the day today!)  I hate those days when you work all day to meet needs and still nobody's satisfied at the end of it!

To wind down, I am indulging in a hobby of mine, and you can probably guess what it is!  Wow, now I have two blogs to play with when I want to neglect other things, yahoo!  I changed my Queenmommie background  to better coordinate with my springtime feelings, and just wait until you see what I can do with labels...  coming soon!  I know you are as excited as I am!

I think I'd better get to bed.


I am too tired to enumerate to the Lord exactly what I need to get through the day tomorrow, but I assume He knows I am all out of all of it.  I pray He will provide whatever it is I need as I sleep tonight.  How good that He is generous to me when I am empty of generosity.  

Into Your hands, O Lord, and into my bed, O head.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Report from the CDC

A mother from a small town in Indiana had an unsettling experience this morning. Upon waking, she discovered her son Eldon had evacuated his stomach contents in his bed during the night. Later that morning much to her surprise, the little boy's pillow pet also lost its stomach contents in the washing machine.



Initial reports indicate the pillow pet may have contracted a viris from his sick owner. If this is the case, it would be the first documented incident of person-to-pillow-pet contamination. Government officials are beginning an investigation. Until official finding are released, all persons owning pillow pets are urged to use proper handwashing precautions around all sick children and sick pillow pets, and to follow carefully all washing instructions for both little boys and pillow pets.

The little boy is unaware of the pillow pet's critical condition, and will be sheltered from the dreadful event until "dog dog's" prognosis is confirmed. Medical officials expressed tentative hope that the pillow pet will make a full recovery after his surgery, scheduled for this afternoon.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

To my oldest son on his fifth birthday,




Before my eyes, my third baby becomes a little man. You are the oldest of the stay-at-home children right now, the biggest big brother, and my most reliable helper.


Your body and your brain grow stronger each day, and you can't wait to use them both in Kindergarten next year. I am excited for you too, even though I know that school will change everything for you. It will make your life more complicated, and your small world so much bigger.




You and I have a complicated relationship already, don't we, my son? You love and adore me like most little boys and their mothers.... and yet, already you wonder how in the world a kid like you could come from a mother like me. Truth be told, I sometimes wonder too, and often credit (or blame) your father.



You have a wonderfully analytical brain, a brain that works in ways utterly foreign to your mother. It is a brain that comes up with questions constantly, questions that already puzzle me on a daily basis. You care about things mechanical and scientific, and you are very detail-oriented. You have discovered that your mother is none of these things. "I don't know honey, that's a daddy question," I say frequently. So I have only myself to blame for your chauvinism: the kind I saw the day you actually withheld your question from me, and then quietly reminded yourself, "Oh that's right, only just daddies know stuff, not mommies."



You taught yourself to read this year, and are trying to learn to spell every word on the planet. I can actually help you in this area, so I do my best to spell as you command me. When you get tired of spelling, you switch to math. Sometimes you follow me around the house with a calculator, asking "Mommy what's 9+9? What's 7 + 8?" When I give you a right answer, I see you are greatly impressed with me, so I have decided that we should linger in this stage for a little longer. I will continue to answer those questions correctly for a few more weeks, thus becoming a bit more respectable in your eyes, before I let you learn about numbers with double digits.


To my relief, you also care about food, so I still have that reliable way into your heart. You were very appreciative of your backwards dinner today: the Spiderman birthday cake, followed by shells and cheese and brats, per your request. Perhaps daddy knows stuff, but mommy cooks stuff, and that definitely counts for something!



You and Marcus were watching Spiderman the movie last week, and I happened to pass by at one of the kissing scenes. I teased, "Oooh, boys, Spiderman is kissing a girl! What do you think of THAT?" I expected your reply to be either blushes or gags, but instead, you said to me, "Mommy me and Marcus are Spiderman, and we just rescued you from that building. Now it's time to give you a kiss." You crawled up on my lap, kissed me on the cheek, and smiled proudly.

My dear son, I am happy to be the woman in your life for just a little bit longer.

Happy fifth birthday, Seth!
Love, mommy




Saturday, March 5, 2011

she SO means what she says!

"Mommy, mommy please please can I go?"

"Alright, I guess you can go, if you will behave..."



"I WILL behave mommy! I will Be-SO-have!"


Friday, March 4, 2011

Can't have anything nice...

Our DVD player has been acting funny lately. So we wondered, is it just getting old, or might there be something else going on?

Josh took it apart to investigate, and as he was cleaning it out he discovered THREE extra DVDs (or, to be exact, 2 dvds and one Wii game) had been crammed inside it.



Why you looking at me?


Thursday, March 3, 2011

Temptation

"Wise, esteemed older brother, what say you of this curious phenomenon? Do mine eyes deceive, or is it indeed a gift to us from the highest heaven?"

"Ah, yes, my young apprentice, that is something exceedingly precious. Our mother calls it "No No," and decries its messiness, but alas, she blasphemes! But behold, we must be wise in our approach, as her eyes are in every place."



"I see, Teacher, but what then shall we do? The entity pulls me towards it with mysterious gravity, and I find myself unable to resist its overtures."

"Indeed, she beckons me as well. We needent wait long, young one. Let us begin with innocent rock throwing, and await the moment when our immersion can be conceived as accidental. "



Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Weak and Loved part 2

My children have a distorted view of me. For one thing, they don't mind when I sing. This is because they don't really know how bad I am, though I am pretty sure Seth already has suspicions.

For the little ones at home with me every day, I am the biggest and best thing in their world. I am the Fixer of All Things Broken, the Filler of All Stomachs Empty, the Cleaner of All Things Dirty, the Finder of All Things Lost. I can extinguish conflicts with one hand, tickle away tears, and revive favorite toys with a mere battery, all while making yummy cupcakes. I am mom, and so, I am the Meeter of All Needs.

To be honest, I like thinking of myself this way too. I like to pretend I am strong, that I am one who is always giving and never has to receive anything from anyone. I might say that's not true, but I still try to live like it is.

For example, how often do I actually ask for help? I mean really ask, not hint, not attempt to project loud thoughts, not angrily imagine my husband can read my mind but chooses to ignore me, but ask with real words and humility? Can I admit, out loud, that I am not the Meeter of All Needs, but am myself poor and needy? Do I have to be at the end of my rope before I can say out loud what everyone else around me already knows-- that I cannot do it all?

If my kids (and I) were right about my superpowers, I would never find myself floored by a stomach bug or depression. I would never be out of patience or simply burned out. And yet, when these things happen, I am always surprised. I fight against weakness, and try to deny it, as if I really am supposed to be the Superhero that my kids think I am.

But I am not, as my children imagine, all-sufficient, all-knowing, all-loving, and all-powerful. There is One who is, and I need Him just as badly as they do. How good it is to be loved by a God who cares for needy children.

But as for me, I am poor and needy;
may the Lord think of me.
You are my help and my deliverer;
you are my God, do not delay.
Psalm 40:17

* Weak and Loved *