Tuesday, September 22

The Bigger Picture

You wouldn't think that a baby screaming in the backseat could provide a profound life lesson to ponder. Yet, somehow, he does.

I didn't even intend to make today's post about motherhood and babies. I thought to myself that I was focusing on the Motherhood "M," to the neglect of Music and Ministry. However, Ministry also overlaps into Motherhood, so it really all works out in the end. I give all credit to my oh-so-creative husband as the brains behind my superb blog title. He's good like that, with the alliteration and such. Thanks, Jonathan.

Matthew is usually wonderful in the car. He has his moments, as do all babies at some point or another. But for the most part, he takes advantage of car rumblings and grumblings to catch a quick catnap en route to our next adventure.

Not today. Today Matthew decided he was oh-so-unhappy in his car seat, and I was supremely cruel and wretched for having subjected him to such torture. I must despise him for having caused him such agony.

Mommy, on the other hand, was suffering great agonies of her own, listening helplessly to Matthew proclaiming his sorrows to the world. I can't explain to you what it feels like to listen to your baby cry, and not be able to do anything immediately to alleviate his discomfort. I did what I could to soothe him vocally, and kept reminding myself, he has to be in the car seat, it's for his best good, that's where he's safest, he'll be ok... It became my mantra--you'll be ok, Matthew--that got me through the 15 minute drive home.

And then I had an epiphany. Yes, one of those flash-of-lightening moments when everything becomes so much clearer, and the Lord hits you across your silly head with 2 by 4. I realized that more often than I care to admit, I am like my squalling son, throwing a tantrum before the Lord, angry with Him for allowing me to endure such suffering. How could You, God? How could You just let me suffer like this? Can't You see how absolutely miserable I am? You should just make it all better right now!

And the Lord shakes His head and sighs, knowing that I am where I am most safe, tucked away where the demons can't shake me loose from His arms. Even though I do not realize it, the Lord knows so much better than I what my best good is, and will keep me there regardless of my extreme protestations. Just as I must do with my little boy: keep him in his car seat, despite his raging, because I know that there, he will be protected from a greater harm than itchy car seat straps.

Lord, teach me to be at peace in Your will. Teach me to accept graciously and calmly all that You place before me. Help me to understand that You alone can know the depths of my being, and provide my every need. I must be still and know that You alone are God. Just as my son must learn to trust that Mommy does in fact know best for a reason, as she can understand far better than he the bigger picture and the greater dangers, so too help me see in Your arms a shelter from the storm and not a barrier to my pleasures.

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