To live content with small means; to seek elegance rather than luxury, and refinement rather than fashion; to be worthy, not respectable, and wealthy, not, rich; to listen to stars and birds, babes and sages, with open heart; to study hard; to think quietly, act frankly, talk gently, await occasions, hurry never; in a word, to let the spiritual, unbidden and unconscious, grow up through the common--this is my symphony.
~William Henry Channing

Thursday, February 16, 2012

It's Her

She's back. The me that I don't want my children to be. And oh gee, look she brought her friend...the me that points out the her that I don't want my children to be.

I want my children to be helpers. I want their first thought, desire and action to be to serve others without hesitation. No matter the inconvenience or extra work or delay with their own stuff or cost to them.
I want to be that because He is that.

But instead I'm the her that I don't want them to be and when the daughter asks, "Mom, will you bring me my uniform?" I pointedly hesitate to get some obscure wordless point across about asking, wanting to be served and then answer yes with a mountain of resignation in my voice.

And the her that points out the me that I don't want my kids to be points her bony finger in my direction.

I want my children to learn to just do what has been asked of them without question. Without suggestions. Without commentary. Just do it. Joyfully, quietly obedient. There are times to ask, to suggest, to request but I want that first instinct to be to obey first...know the difference. Make those times count because they are the exception and not the rule.

We're in the kitchen. (Why must it be this child, this daughter lately that is always around when the her that I don't want to be shows up?) I had just finished baking a casserole for them to take to church and he wants it covered with foil. And I question his request. I suggest that maybe it'll be fine because we're only a few minutes from the church. Why waste the foil that is expensive? (Why buy it then? See me roll my eyes in hindsight at how ridiculous I am.)

And the her that points out the me that I don't want my kids to be points her bony finger in my direction.

Every week during our corporate confession there is a line that goes something like "I am helpless before my enemies" and almost without fail every week I see myself looking back at me. I am my own worst enemy and like one of the old dead guys said that Rob likes to quote, I scarcely need a devil.

For the past couple of weeks I've tried to be diligent in having a set prayer time in the mornings. It's a struggle for me. Not because I don't want to pray but I feel so often that I don't know how to pray. I'm great at the flash prayers through out the day. Or praying for a specific need. But cultivating this time...there's something different about this set aside's more intimate. And somehow lately my problem with words has made itself known during this time. I feel like I'm talking to myself.

This morning I listened to the sound of the rain. It was falling fast and hard. The water washing away the settledness, cleaning out the complacent dryness and quenching a thirsty ground. Seemingly random puddles gather and a current forms removing debris.

His Spirit intercedes on our behalf falling like the rain. The tempo rising and falling, at times nurturing...bringing growth...other times destruction...ridding hearts and minds of our complacency and settledness. And the her that points out the me I don't want to be is washed away...her guilty accusation now the rain of  His conviction.

And the me that I don't want to be falls on her knees, a prayer on her lips.

Let it rain. Let it pour.


Tricia said...

Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. – Romans 8:26

s g said...

I used to live in this place... Looking always at the me I didn't want to be. But, I had a good friend who always pointed me to Christ, helped me to learn from the me I didn't want to be and move on. Now, I only visit with that other me from time to time- an unwanted overnight guest occasionally. So, sweet friend, milk those beautiful prayer times for all they're worth and leave "her" behind at the cross.

Marty said...

I love you Susan.

s g said...

smooch, good friend

Marty said...

And, Tricia that is the exact verse I thought of...and how thankful I am for that!