Saturday, May 21, 2011

Broken Wings and Broken Things

It’s amazing how God takes the broken things around me to speak to me. It’s a language I understand, the language of the broken girl trying to cover up her brokenness with another layer of makeup, a cute outfit, and a plastic smile. Going through motions with the false appearance of having it all together while on the inside you crumble wondering if anyone sees it.

Weeks ago, my daughters released Painted Lady butterflies right outside our front door. My daughters turned their attention away from the butterflies that flew without hesitation to scoop up the two butterflies with broken wings with such compassion and gentleness that it made me want to cry while the others took to the wind without hesitation because it was what they were created to do. I remembered when I felt just like the butterflies with broken and tattered wings to wounded to know what freedom and soaring above it all felt like.

Imagine that wing, tattered and malformed, is a fist. The deeper it hurts the tighter you clench it, hold it up in the air and shake it. Inside your palm are fragments of the past that you can’t forgive. Things that seems worth holding onto, tiny enough to be unnoticeable. But it grows roots and claws that wrap around you, trapping you and choking out the life…the beauty…the fullness that God has in store.

Anger and the inability to forgive cripple a heart that longs to soar above it all. A crippled heart limps through life and even though you think no one else can see, God sees it and says, “Do you want to be made well?”

I don’t know who has wounded you crippling your heart so that a wall encases what God meant to showcase. But, when you let go, choose to forgive, the fist relaxes and the vines that entangled you are uprooted setting you free.

Healing comes when you admit that you are the walking wounded.

Healing comes when you learn to forgive yourself and others.

Healing comes when you release it, unclenched and unhindered. Then what once was tattered becomes stronger than ever, something useful as you soar on wings like eagles.

“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not faint.” (Is40: 29-31 NIV)

Monday, May 2, 2011

Irreplaceable, A Crayon Card for Mom

Can I confess to you that I'm a stay-at-home mom who loathes housework? I can assure you that when I colored my picture in grade school of what I wanted to be when I grow up it did not have someone scrubbing toilets and conquering mounds of laundry. It probably had a picturing of a girl with a huge smile on her face wearing a tiara prancing around her castle feeling treasured. But, today my castle is much smaller with dishes in the sink and tiny shoes belonging to little princesses that haven't learned how to pick up after themselves yet. There are days when being a mom is a thankless job and then there are days that I can't hold back the tears because I'm grateful that I get the privilege of hearing “Mommy” a million times. Yes, there are days where I want to pull my hair out, lock myself in the bathroom and never come out. We all have those days where we feel replaceable, invisible, and under-valued.

Saturday night I heard my little girls whispering something to their daddy. I tried not to listen, but I have super powers and “Mom ears” that hear just about everything.

“Can we give it to her now?”

He knows that they get the trait of being unable to wait from me and gives them the go ahead.

They came into the room with the sweetest smiles and their hands behind their backs, “Here Mommy.”

I opened the cards they made and began to sob as I wrapped them up in my arms. I didn't see that coming.

“I love you, Mom. I could never replace you.”

My response took them by surprise. To be honest with you, it took me by surprise too. Spilling out from within me was the awareness that I am not replaceable. I am not invisible. I am loved as the flawed mother that I am.

As I wept my oldest smiled as I whispered, “It's happy tears.”

She ran into the other room to tell Daddy that the cards were a huge success while my baby wiped my tears and held me. She kissed my wet face and said the words she couldn't write on the card in crayon.

“No one could be gooder than you.”

Forget Mother-of-Year, perfection does not live in my home. Love does.

Moms, you are not replaceable. You are not invisible. You are treasured. You are loved. No one could do it better than you do. Set aside your need to make everyone think you have it all together, let a few things pile up, let love fill your home as you aspire to be the Proverbs 31 woman.

You are irreplaceable.

“Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.” Prov 31: 28-29