As Christians, we are often told that the tongue is a source of great power, but have you ever noticed that you can complete a full thought, in complete sentences, without even opening your mouth? So where, exactly, does that power lie?
I tell myself a lot of horrible things...on a regular basis.
The running list of things I say to myself daily, without ever even opening my mouth, would make any feeling human being cry.
*I am ugly.
*I look horrible without any make up.
*My gosh, I'm fat.
*I'm a horrible mother.
*I'm so awkward.
*I'm so fat. (did I mention that one)
...and so much more that I don't even dare to type out. I call myself names, tell myself I am not good enough, and squash my own dreams, without ever opening my mouth to speak.
I wouldn't dream of saying these things to another person. In fact, I don't even think these things about another person. Yet I tell myself these things all the time.
See the issue of controlling the tongue is minor in comparison to that of the mind. And I believe God's word knew this to be metaphorical from the start, but so many of us only focus on the literal aspects.
If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all.
There are lots of Bible verses about the controlling of the tongue, detailing how we should address others.
I don't know about you, but I do not have any problems loving on and building other people up. I can very easily see what is good and kind in others, and encourage them in that.
See, the mind would love for us to believe that the tongue is the problem. But this right here, above, is harder than keeping your mouth shut. Stop allowing the tongue to take the fall for the powers of the mind.
My prayer for myself, and for you reading this, struggling with your own misconceptions about yourself, is that in focusing on what is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, and admirable, God might show us ourselves, so that we may love ourselves the way that He loves us. Because there is no way, He wants us to speak to ourselves that way.
This song has washed over me, over and over, both reminding me, and healing me of the hurt of broken dreams. There are "whys" that I struggle with, to this day, where parts of me will forever remain in that valley. Then there are these undeserved blessings, that I dare not even question, where parts of me are rejoicing on those hills.
We tend to describe hills and valleys as two different places or fluctuating times in your life when you're either at a low point, or a high point. I believe these hills and valleys are not mutually exclusive; that we often find ourselves in both places at once.
In a simultaneous moment I can be both deeply saddened by the child I lost in the womb, and rejoicing over the children I have.
I reside in both, daily. The important thing is remembering that God is the God of both. He will meet with us, every part of us, no matter where that may be. I pray that this song encourages you like it has me.
Wherever you are standing, stand firm in your faith. Be sure that your heart and mind are prepared for both the hills and the valleys. When you find a part of you, dwelling in one of your valleys, instead of the lies of the darkness, embrace the truth in the light. No matter where you're standing, stand firm. Have faith. You are not alone.
As a busy mom of four children, I'd say I have a less than healthy relationship with food. I often spend all morning feeding everyone but myself. They all eat at different rates, and then there are always other time sensitive things which need to be multi-tasked in the morning routine. So, between feeding children intermittently, while also washing dishes, and doing laundry, and getting kids on the bus and all the things a mom has to do each morning, it is often approaching noon when I realize I hardly ate a thing.
But this here, really isn't even about food. I find this to be true in my spiritual life as well. There is a shocking parallel. Pray with the kids, teach the kids, pray for or with my friends and family and their needs, etc, etc. I encourage everyone else around me to have a healthy spiritual life and relationship with God, and forget to feed myself.
Last week, I discussed moms growing weary, and the reason behind that is not necessarily in doing all the things; it is in the one thing we're not doing. Moms, we have got to remember to feed ourselves! We grow weary because in doing all the things, opening up our Bibles, or finding quiet time with Jesus just ends up on the end of a long list of chores we never get to.
So easily we can begin to lose ourselves; our faith. At the beck and call to our children's every need, want, desire; soccer practice, swim lessons, basketball camps, birthday parties, meals, never ending laundry and dishes, and play (when is there time for that?), these tiny humans we love, so quickly turn to idols in our lives. If we're not careful, we lose sight of God.
Last week was such a moment, and a small group of women from my church were meeting for some worship and fellowship that Friday. I can't even begin to tell you just how much I did not want to go. I love these women to pieces, but I was lost in a sea of anxiety over my never ending to-do lists, and feeling really lost. Thanks to their encouragement, and my husband's insistence, I went.
And God met me there. See, having the simple freedom of worship without the constant distraction of four children to my right, is such a great blessing! And during this time, while I was feeling so incredibly exhausted and stressed and physically pained by the weight of adulting, God showed me a verse.
It may seem irrelevant to most, but I began to blubber like a baby. So many times when I feel so completely overwhelmed that I feel broken in some way, I feel so alone. The devil tries to make me feel like God doesn't care. "That's why He doesn't answer you. That's why He's not helping you through this. This isn't important to him."
Do you ever feel this way? Let down and left alone to fend for yourself? It is not the truth! He is there! He loves you! And even in your pain and sorrow, He knows that you love Him too. Don't project your own busy life onto Him. He is not the one putting you off. Meet with him, feed yourself, encourage your own relationship with God the way you encourage others, because He loves you!
When Jesus said, "Come to me, all you who are weary..." there's a part of me that believes he's talking to moms. Not that people don't go through much more difficult things in life than being a mom. Being a mom is a joy and a blessing, but there's a reason why "supermom" is thrown around as though moms have superpowers.
It's a lot.
I have been really feeling the weight of it all lately, and, while it sounds dramatic to say, I have been feeling completely overwhelmed, like shut-myself-up-in-my-room-and-cry-while-the-kids-fend-for-themselves, overwhelmed. I am juggling more than I can handle, and they are hitting the ground all around me.
It is times like these when I feel like I am drowning. I am finding permission slips I should have turned in last week. I look at the laundry baskets piled up, after I'd just emptied them the day before, and I haven't even gotten around to the bed sheets in a month. I find I only have time for dishes when they need to be eaten out of. We have take-out we can't afford, 3 nights in a row, because I haven't had the time to get to the store in between naps, and cleaning, and homework, and toddler tantrums; and even opening my Bible (which I had somehow misplaced), seems like a chore on a long list of things I'll never get to.
...and I literally feel my chest tighten and I become short of breath.
What I always fail to remember, is that if I just moved my Bible time up on my to-do list, I'd save myself a whole lot of stress.
The devil will keep trying to tell you that you're no good; that you're failing at every turn, that you can never do it all. But the thing is, you don't have to. Sure, the laundry and the dishes aren't going to wash themselves, and this adulting, parenting things is no joke, but allow yourself time to collect and refresh. Spend some time with God before you try to do all the things. Juggling and prioritizing properly are impossible without Him. I land on my face every time. But if I remember that He's just waiting for me to throw a few His way, my view (and head!) becomes much clearer.
As a wife, mom of 4, and business owner, finding time to spend in the Word, can be difficult, so I get it! Come join me each Monday for a simple message of hope, faith, and encouragement amidst some honest mommy moments.
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