To God Be The Glory (and Control)
Lately I have found myself gravitating towards blogs written by dads when I have a spare moment to read articles that I see via Twitter and Facebook. I am not sure why this is, only that it is refreshing to hear things from the other side of the proverbial parenting coin. Recently I ran across this article on Parents.com written by Nick Shell, a dad and writer heralding from Alabama. I loved his candid writing style, but even more than that I found myself loving every word he used to describe his parenting experience.
The article talks about “7 things” he has stopped caring about since becoming a dad, all of which my husband and I can completely relate to. From drool to sleep depravation to keeping a functioning schedule, Nick’s humorous but straightforward reflections remind me that there are many things that we sacrifice for our kids and our families without even thinking about it.
Today at church the message was on “Having Everything Under Control” – something that I as a parent work at what seems like all the time. The reminder that I do not and cannot possibly have everything under control all the time was sobering, but not nearly as sobering as the reminder of who DOES have it all under control: the Lord. SO often I try to plan every minute of my day in a desperate attempt to retain control of the little things in my life as a parent that I still have a say in, such as when the kids have a nap, when the bills get paid, when we run errands, and more, never stopping to think about the fact that sometimes relaxing and not being so structured may not actually result in my world falling to pieces.
Like Peter – the impetuous and well-meaning disciple that wielded his sword in an show of bravery and control when the soldiers came to get Jesus in the Garden that night, I try to blaze my own trail when life gets crazy. Is this because I feel that no one else can fix things but me? Is it because I want to guarantee an outcome to the situation that is favorable to me? When I think about it, so often things end up going differently that how I plan them to be, despite my grandest of efforts. Kids get sick or have to go to the bathroom, requiring play-dates and shopping outings to be put on hold. Bills pile up before money comes in. Commitments get in the way of date nights. It is no wonder I go to bed many nights feeling the weight of the world on my shoulders!
I think I am going to make it my goal this week to – like Nick Shell – figure out what things I can stop caring about. Not to say that they do not matter at all, but to realize that in the big picture – knowing that God is in control anyway – some things can go by the wayside and the world will not come down around me. This may mean more toys strewn about, less clean counters, and a lot more kid’s laundry covered in grass and mud stains, but in the end I think that my kids will be happier, I will carry less stress around with me, and God will become my focus and not myself as I try to Super-mom my way through the day.
- To God be the glory, great things He hath done,
So loved He the world that He gave us His Son,
Who yielded His life our redemption to win,
And opened the life-gate that all may go in.
- Praise the Lord, praise the Lord,
Let the earth hear His voice;
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord,
Let the people rejoice;
Oh, come to the Father, through Jesus the Son,
And give Him the glory; great things He hath done.
- Oh, perfect redemption, the purchase of blood,
To every believer the promise of God;
The vilest offender who truly believes,
That moment from Jesus a pardon receives.
- Great things He hath taught us, great things He hath done,
And great our rejoicing through Jesus the Son;
But purer, and higher, and greater will be
Our wonder, our transport when Jesus we see.