Monday, October 29, 2007

My Cup Runneth Over and Maketh a Big Mess

Warning: Transparency Alert.

Disclaimer: I'm not out of hope and I don't dislike motherhood. In fact overall I'm surprisingly fond of it, but that's a story for another day. This is about these latter days and how they've taken their toll.*

We were joined in church yesterday by the missionaries to Cambodia who our church supports and whose grandmother goes to our church. Jeremy preached and besides telling stories that made me want to go back to Ethiopia, he used an example of a pitcher of water pouring into a cup sitting on a saucer sitting on a plate. The pitcher is God; he's always pouring and pouring his grace. We're the cup; God pours into us and it overflows into our family/loved ones/the things we hold most dear (the saucer) and then into the larger world, the people and places we touch in ministry/life (the plate). But if you put the saucer or plate over the cup, nothing gets into the cup. It stays empty or drys up.


I'd say I am feeling dry, except it's more like drowning. There's grace all around me and most days I can even see it, but sometimes it feels like instead of drinking it in, I'm just flailing around and making a mess.

These days I am giving a lot to Anna, and that's a good thing. It's worthwhile and usually it's enjoyable. Sometimes it's downright fun. But it never, ever stops. It's just so constant, this mothering thing.

That might be okay if everything else weren't constant too. But it is, and over the last couple weeks all the demands of life, mine and ours and everyone else's, have been engulfing and overwhelming me. Sometimes I feel like I work thirteen hours a day and accomplish nothing. Too many to-do's and not enough done. Too many bills and not enough money. Too much conflict and not enough communication. Too many needs and not enough helpers. Too much work and not enough play and one dull boy and girl crashed vacantly on the couch with no energy for either.

Another day, another dollar. Two steps forward, three steps back.

Days and weeks like these can leave us feeling perplexed. What are we doing wrong? Why did God bring us to this spot? Am I doing enough? Am I doing too much? What if the money runs out? Is it my fault? Will it ever get easier?

Some of those questions I know the answer to; I just need to remind myself or hear the truth again. Some of them we'll never know the answers to. And for some of them we just have to play our hand out as best we can.

It's not like I haven't been here before, and knowing me, I'm sure I'll come back again. I'm thankful God gives more than enough grace to smooth over my ups and downs. Deep down I trust His work is not done in me and around me. I want to be a Psalm 27 girl:

I am still confident of this:
I will see the goodness of the LORD
in the land of the living.

Wait for the LORD;
be strong and take heart
and wait for the LORD.

(verses 13-14)

But let's get real: My confidence falters sometimes, with so much riding on it. I try to be strong and I just take on too much. My plate gets full and my cup gets blocked and runneth over and maketh a big mess. (And then leaves that mess in the kitchen for several days hoping it will clean itself.)

So yeah, I'm a Psalm 27 girl, deep down. But some days, in all honesty, it comes a little more naturally for me to be a Matchbox 20 girl: I really, really just wish the real world would stop hassling me. And you.

Please don't change
Please don't break
The only thing that seems to work at all is you . . .
I wish the real world would just stop hassling me and you

*Mmm, what I really need right now is some Good Dog Bad Dog for these latter days. All I need is everything. Will there ever be a time in my life when I can't come back to these lyrics? I submit that there will not.


~Hippie~ said...

God's always working to help us move forward, even if it's not the path we would like to take or at the rate we feel like moving.
I'm sure you're well aware of that, but it's very true nonetheless.
I'll help in any way that I can, but sometimes it's just a matter of grinding.
I'm at a lack of a better word, but I'll describe it and I'm sure you've already grasped the concept before.
Grinding - n:to grind; a constant grind.
It IS constant, and it's hard at times, and it WILL NOT STOP just because you want a nap.
There's a lot of good, but that doesn't stop it from wearing on you.
I love you guys, and I wish I could just put life on pause and give you guys a well deserved 12 hour nights sleep. However, until I come into possession of my soon-to-come time control powers, you'll just have to power on through it. Good luck Wendy.
Keep your Heart with Ana, you Spirit with God, and your Head on your shoulders.

Mark, Rebecca and Sophia said...

Beautiful post.

Cat Hoemke said...

so a couple of things that have come to my mind during this canidate course:
- only worthwhile things are worth doing.
- the harder the work, the more the benefit and blessing it will return.
- everybody gets the baby blues.
Not sure if this is helpful, but consider it a virtual "i hear ya," and "hang in there."

Amy said...

As much as you're prepared for a baby, it sure is different when it lands. And no matter who tells you "boy, your life will change!", it's different to experience it. Look for the sweet in every day, trust in God. And sometimes, take that day or half-day off. Find a babysitter that can take Anna away for an hour or two. You will feel loads better.
Best advice we ever got - when you're on an airplane, you place the oxygen mask on YOURSELF first, and then your children. Because if Mama ain't taking care of herself, no one can take care of the family.