“The primary business I must attend to every day is to fellowship with the Lord. The first concern is not how much I might serve the Lord, but how my inner man might be nourished.”
— George Mueller
As I’ve repeatedly said, I’m not the sharpest tool in the shed. This pastor’s kid, who was raised in church and in a Christian school and is a graduate from Bible college, does not know it all. Most of the time, I think I’m still learning the basics as it seems that I start back at square one quite often. And as I’ve battled with contentment and being happy with living back in Colorado, I’ve battled the continual feeling that I’m wasting my life as I’m not using my gifts or talents. That has been a continual theme of this blog as I’ve wrestled and wrestled. And yet something has finally, finally clicked. It helps that everywhere I go or everything that I pick up to read has been hinting towards the answer. Yet it finally clicked between my heart and my head . . . and that’s when life changes.
My biggest fear has always been that I will waste my life; I do not want to stand before the Lord and hear Him say, “Mic, I had so many plans, so much that would have made your heart happy, but you didn’t do any of it.” I want to hear Him say, “well done, my good and faithful servant.” That’s always been my heart. My heart is to serve, to love, to be a vessel that is just poured out for Him. And yet I get encumbered (??) and distracted by all the day to day have to’s of life. I get stuck in the routine, the monotony, the tiredness, and all the clutter that comes from every direction. I look over the fence and think why is my grass not green, why have weeds and dirt overtaken everything, why am I not living over there and doing that? Why am I wasting my life with laundry and menu planning and running here and there to just survive?
So a few months ago, my dad gave me a book to read, and as soon as I opened it and read the questions of the author (questions that were all similar to mine), it clicked. I didn’t even have to get beyond the first chapter as I knew what Dad was getting at. I knew it because I had already noticed a pattern from the lives of my heroes in the faith – Mother Teresa and Heidi Baker. I knew what I was missing and where my perspective was wrong, because I knew what their number one priority in life was/is – it’s all about Jesus and time spent with Him. Everything begins with time spent with Him. Mother Teresa used to say that she’d wake up at 5am and spend the first hour of every morning just loving on Jesus. That was how she was able to love the unlovable. That was where she begin each day in order to fulfill her calling. If you read anything by her, it’s all about Jesus. If you read anything by Heidi Baker, it’s all about love, the love God, the Father heart of God, how lovely Jesus is. They get it. And their grass is certainly not greener. They both know dirt, messes, suffering, hurting, helping people to survive the day, and much more. Yet time spent in His presence is what gets them through all of that.
So as I’ve watched, prayed, and pondered, it’s dawned on me that my frustration is due to a misplacement of priorities. Because everything that frustrates me right now . . . my lack of parenting skills, my discontentment with where we’re living and what we’re doing, my striving to keep a good attitude, my wanting to do something that makes Micah’s heart feel fulfilled, etc. all stems from not having the first thing first. How might I be changed if I got up at 5am and spent time with Him? How full would I be so that it would become natural to just pour out love? How might my family see changes in me if I let Him fill me up before I tried to do all that they need me to do? How would life change? Wouldn’t that help me to be the wife and mom that I want to be, but also prepare me for the time when I do get to love on the unlovely or serve the hurting? Yet regardless of all of that, isn’t the Christian life all about Him anyway? We were designed to spend time with our Creator. We were made to walk with Him and talk with Him, and when we just make five minutes here and five minutes there for Him, wouldn’t we naturally feel that we’re missing something? Isn’t He the whole point of it all? Isn’t that what my kids need to know? I think so . . . it’s just up to me to make the time to do it.
So in conclusion, I’m leaving you with a few thoughts and words that I’ve been dwelling on:
— Oswald Chambers Daily Devotional
Oh to be like You
Give all I have just to know You
Jesus, there’s no one besides You
Forever the hope in my heart
—Scandal of Grace by Hillsong United