last night at small group there was a guy who clearly had a sharing heart that read to us from a chapter that is entirely familiar and that i started reciting in my head as he spoke. but then it spoke to me and i realized it was an encouragement to me where i am right now. a mom at home with her kids spending her days doing laundry and emptying a dishwasher.
let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
when he said 'the race set before you' it struck me that THIS is my race. this life is what has been set before me right now. this is a temporary phase in life where small children demand my attention at all times and changing diapers is an immediate need. this too will pass, new challenges will surface and the race before me will change courses- it might look very different from this one, or it might not. but i haven't been asked to chart a different course, i'm being asked to run this race patiently and diligently with my ultimate focus on jesus.
while not an earth shattering discovery, it is comforting to me in a lot of ways. giving myself permission to say that i have difficulty not growing weary or losing heart helps me to realize that the place to go to renew my perseverence is in jesus, no matter how trivial my race may seem to some. it feels good to acknowledge that simply raising children, loving them with my whole self and helping them to develop is quite the exhausting race.
we finished our small group workbook last night and the epilogue had this lovely benediction of sorts from the author that we all thought summed up the book quite nicely:
to you, my fellow traveler, may God explode your heart with gratefulness for salvation, with anger over injustice, with love for the loveless, with selfless hours of service, with words that bring hope, and homes that bring warmth. may christ be in the food you serve; may he interrupt your schedule with moments that change the destiny of families; may his purposes become your purposes; and may the things that break his heart break yours. may he supply to you all that is needed to live large in the kingdom that is now and yet to come, and may we someday meet along a heavenly riverbank and meet each others' friends that now know the king of glory because of you.
next on the agenda is 'crazy love' by francis chan.