“Grace” is the English translation of a Greek word meaning “that which brings delight, joy, happiness, or good fortune.”  A temporary immunity or exemption; a reprieve.  Mercy; clemency.   A disposition to be generous or helpful; goodwill.  All of these things define grace in one way shape or form.  Of course there are other meanings of the word but for me it is very specific.  Grace is proving to be the word for this particular season of my life.  Once again the clouds are speaking to me as they did during the few weeks after my sweet momma died.  The clouds have gotten my attention.  I am watching and I like what I am seeing.  It is as if the Lord is speaking to me through His creation.  Several weeks ago we closed yet another chapter in our lives.  It was a good chapter with lots of great stories but I knew deep down there were more exciting pages to be written.  My soul has longed for “more” for quite some time.  As we were driving away I looked in the rearview mirror and could not help but notice the huge, dark ominous clouds behind us.  They were so incredibly beautiful but so fitting.  In front of me was a bright, blue, clear sky with huge puffy white clouds that looked as if I could lie down and go to sleep forever.  For the past couple of years I have felt as if we were in a holding pattern of sorts in our lives.  I knew then and even more so now that the Lord was priming us for our next season in life.  He had some work that needed to be done with me in particular, but His plan is slow and steady.  I knew every single day that the Lord was preparing me for things to come but He wanted to make certain I fully understood and appreciated His future blessings.  This most recent season in our lives was such a learning lesson for me.  I learned that in order for things to be the best they can be we must be patient and wait for Him.  Oh my, I am not necessarily the most patient person but I certainly learned, and continue to learn, that if we wait on Him and seek His provision things will work out for our betterment.  Learning this valuable lesson has taken me a long time to understand.  It is still a work in progress, but the outcome is looking better with each new day.

Now, back to the “grace” part;)  Throughout this process of trusting the Lord to lead my life in areas of monster-size decision-making (yes, I just made that up) I found myself being tossed around in a very bouncy bubble.  I had fallen into the trap of trying to do too much.  As moms it is so easy to do this.  Women tend to be the nurturer and caretaker of their families.  We plan, enroll, organize, shop, decorate, discipline, referee, feed, teach, shape and form these little guys we have been entrusted with.  It is very easy to get caught up in trying to do it all.  No one starts anything with the goal to fail and when you are responsible, either on your own or with a spouse, of a little human being, the pressure is insurmountable!  A woman’s brain works like this (this is for the three men that will actually read this post, one of which is my husband.  For the women who read this you can just laugh because you know it’s true) ‘I read the other day on yahoo that children who sit in front of the television more than two hours a day are twice as likely to develop learning disorders.  Great!  Now, my little angel will be kicked out of pre-k for disorderly conduct and not listening to his teacher.’  ‘Dr. Oz said that the shower head that was in my home was laden with chemicals and full of lead.  Well, I guess I will be making a stop at Home Depot for a new filtered shower head. My husband is going to love this one!’  ‘My favorite mommy blog wrote a huge article about why I should soak my nuts and beans before consuming them since the gasses they naturally produce could upset the flora in our intestinal tract.  Are you kidding me!?!  Ugh!!!  Just when I thought I had this healthy eating thing down!’  ‘I am always hearing organic, organic, organic, but my budget is screaming Aldi!  If I don’t feed my family organic they will all die of overexposure to pesticides!  What’s a girl to do?’  ‘Corn!  We can’t eat corn!?!  GMO, what the heck is that?  Is there anything we can eat anymore that comes from the store?  I feel the need to grow a humongous garden and raise my own livestock!’  ‘Baseball, football, golf, scouts, gymnastics, dance, piano lessons, violin, VBS, Sunday school, manners, chores, academics, fitness, charity, birthday parties, and on and on and on…. 

I could seriously continue on for hours but you get my drift.  As moms we get so wrapped up in the snare of perfection.  Please note that I said “snare” because it will trap you.  You see other moms doing their thing and the family is beautiful, mom is fit and trim, the kids are enrolled in private school, they excel in sports, and she is meeting the girls for coffee every week, and the family is all smiles, or so it seems.  I have had many conversations with my mommy friends about this very issue.  I have yet to meet a woman who doesn’t compare, at least a little, her success as a wife and mother to those around her.  Well, I found myself in this trap of trying to do too much and I was exhausted!  There, I admit it.  As much as I enjoyed doing some of my “overkill” I was beginning to despise it.  I was starting to feel trapped.  I felt as if it were my duty to ensure the health and safety of my family with the strictest of rules.  I mean, I am the caretaker of my home.  If I don’t do it who else is there?  My husband is too busy with work and “bringing home the bacon” to take on such a monumental task so it fell in my lap.  I am at a point where I am questioning all the things I do.  Are all these things necessary, if not which ones can I just let go of?  In the midst of all of this I have really noticed the clouds and how beautiful they have been.  I have never seen clouds so majestic in all my life.  It is as if they were meant for me.  The other day I witnessed a bright, open hole in the clouds of a dark and rainy day and I felt such a reassurance that I was on the right path.  I have only seen this particular type of cloud one other time in my life, it was just the assurance I needed.  It is nothing short of awesome when we slow down a bit and really wait on Him to show us what we need to do or not do in this instance.  As for now, I am letting go of a few things in order to just simply enjoy the life I have been blessed to live.  It is not easy for me to do this but I know it is necessary.  I am sure there will come a point in my life where I can pick back up and do some of the things I let go of today but until then I will stop, breathe, and wait while giving myself a little grace…


4 thoughts on “grace

  1. Oh, AMEN! I have been feeling this way as well. It is hard not to compare, it is hard to let go and feel like its okay. It is hard. The concept of grace for myself is something I was just struck with a few weeks ago and I have been struggling to remind myself ever since to give myself some grace (while giving it to my family as well). Thanks girl for this breath of fresh air!

  2. I am glad that He speaks to you with the clouds that He made. I am glad that you even notice them. Romans 1:20. I love those little God kisses that we get that let us know that we are on the right path. Headed further up and further in. I love you.
    I did giggle. there have been times when I have been suspicious of the foods I buy at the grocery…. are we all going to die for all of the unknown GMO’s and hidden chemical sweeteners designed to trick our brains and taste buds!? oy. I shake my head. and giggle, and along side you try some of that grace!

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