Walking in Faith

Last night we went to the lake. We found a new beach and ended up wandering down this sublime little hide away cove to just delight in the glory of the Lord being revealed all about us – in the gigantic trees standing firmly against the lake winds, to the tiny shells laying crumbled on the shore, to the crash of the waves and the cry of the seagull and the intensity of the sunset. All of it was on display to glorify Father.

Something else that glorified Father, for me, was the way our children responded to one another. While we were walking, they were attentive to one another, they were concerned for one another (mostly that no one fell into the water…it’s still a tad on the chilly side) and they just responded to one another in a way that demonstrated that they were more concerned for their siblings than they were for themselves. How blessed I am that the Lord should allow us to be a family. What a rich and precious gift that is from Father. It is one that we must not take lightly. It is the “F” part of how we’re to walk.

Jeff and I do not delude ourselves into thinking that the children we have – the fruit that they display in their lives – is anything we should have. We see maturity in our children that is far beyond anything we should be harvesting. Truly, our children are a primary evidence of grace in our lives.

I don’t suppose our family is any different from anyone else’s. (Okay, maybe a bit stranger, perhaps. I don’t suppose you all have children that take sheets and lower one another from the upper floor down to the foyer – pretending that they’re “spelunking” – that does seem to be a Clark thing.)  We have good days and bad days and sometimes it’s the kids that are having them, sometimes it’s the adults.  The thing that is most important to keep in mind is the state of their hearts.

We have found that there are far more important things than being right.  We have found that it’s not nearly so important to us to appear as though we have it “together” in front of our children.  It’s much more valuable to be real and open with them.  There was a time when we would NEVER have thought to share with our children any struggles we were having with sin in our lives.  Now we do – and we will frequently ask our children to hold us accountable.

In addition to sharing ways that they can pray for us and hold us accountable, we endeavor to have plenty of time for laughing and sharing and just delighting in one another.  It is vitally important to me to keep the goal of keeping their hearts in mind.

To that end, may I challenge you that keeping the hearts of our children is something we must be diligent about? There are many wiser and far more eloquent teachers who can and do speak of this. I would adjure you to give them your ear and your time. (I’m sure each of us has a specific author that we especially appreciate – and I’d love it if you’d list your favorite parenting book in the comment section.)

Enjoy your children.  Do your best to work backwards in your mind.  “Will this issue make a difference in the long haul – or is it simply an issue for today?”  I am not advocating abdication of requiring obedience or honor from our children – I AM talking about making them re-make their beds or perfect their sweeping skills.  Granted, the line between doing good work and being a nit-pick is a fine one and I have found only one way to determine which vein I’m operating in.

Checking my own heart.  If my heart is in turmoil and agitated, then it is likely I’m operating in the flesh and my goal is nothing more than perfectionism.   If however, my desire is truly only to train my children to do their best unto Father, then my heart is most likely “ok.”  It requires a great deal of honestly with myself to accurately assess the state of my heart.  (I don’t always like what I find, either. And there are times, I can do nothing more than simply turn, open my arms and ask the Holy Spirit to search my heart!)

Just a quick side note – if you’re getting really irked with your kids, it’s likely that they are keeping you from whatever it is that you are craving and that’s a good time to stop and have a heart check.

Of course, family would include more than just parent-child relations, we certainly don’t want to exclude marriage.  Mawwiage – it’s what brings us together today.  Oh wait – this isn’t Quote Idiots Friday.  Marriage is certainly more than just one little blog post.  Suffice it to say I’m all for it!  I think that there is little sweeter than a marriage that is operating in the way that Father intended and little more that can wound as deeply as one that is not.

As women of God, we must be diligent and found faithful to be praying regularly for our husbands and children.  We must long to see God bring forth all that He has for our households.  Too many years I feared what that could mean.  It makes me wonder what I may have missed out on, now that I look back.

Lord, I lift to You all the families that are touched by those who read here.  I ask Lord that You would bless them, that You would make them more wholly Yours.  Make us, as Moms, aware of Your unending resources that equip us to minister in our families.  May we be pliable and the vessel that You use to love our families. Teach us how to make our families a source of glory for You.  In Jesus’ Name ~

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Comments
5 Responses to “Walking in Faith”
  1. Holly says:

    Yep. I knew you were going to start meddlin’.

    🙂

    I need to be reminded of much of this, Dawn. Thanks for being willing to speak into my life.

  2. reneegrace says:

    Holly – HA!! you-me both had the same thoughts.

    I am at an awkward month / or two… that WAITING for the next stage of life to begin… Bryan’s new job, the condo to finish being renovated, the baby being born and all the changes that entails…

    And I am so not dealing with it well… I want my husband back, for one thing… (his time – … it’s just life for just a few weeks more!) How do you single moms, or wives with absent husbands do it?!?!? You are phenomenal!!

  3. reneegrace says:

    OH and I KNOW that quote!!! Princess Bride!!!

  4. Margie says:

    I am definately one of the wounded ones with a marriage that is not operating as God has designed marriage to work. I needed this gentle (and maybe not so gentle) reminder to pray that God will ultimately be glorified in my marriage. All of the hurt and heart-ache is for naught if God is not glorified in the end.

    Oh, and I recognized Princess Bride too! LOL, too bad it isn’t Quote Idiots Friday 🙂

  5. javadawn says:

    Meddlin’?!! ME?!! I NEVER meddle. 😀 Sorry, didn’t mean to – was just sharing what Father was laying on my heart. Let’s blame Him, eh? 😉

    ReneeGrace, I’m so stinking lousy at waiting. Just ask Jeff how many times I’ve asked him, “Is this the week you’re turning in your notice?” 😆 AND waiting for a new person to arrive is THE HARDEST! 😀

    Oh Margie, dear, I DO pray that God would be glorified in your marriage – not only that He might receive all the glory, but so that you two might get the good. (I can’t emphasize how much I DO NOT get that, but also how much I know it to be true.)

    It’s SO hard to have a Quote Idiots Friday on a Sunday, don’t ya know? 😉

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