Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Finding the Anchor - Today's Tender Mercy

One of my children is doing very well in one area of life and doing very poorly in another.  It just so happens that the poor area is directly affecting the good area.  One cannot be done while the other is going as badly as it is.  This has had my head spinning.  I want to cheer and clap and carry on about the good thing.  I want to so badly, but the road blocks of the poor performance in the other area prevent me from celebrating; they make me cringe and feel like crying.  It's a tough situation.  I only hope that this child will hold on, work through the hard thing and continue with the good. 

Sorry to be so cryptic lately, but I don't want to betray my children in their hard times.

I spoke with this child yesterday and just felt like he/she was going to give up and didn't really care any more.  It was going to be too much work.  I didn't understand how someone who had such great abilities could have so little ambition.  Dang!  If I was that good at anything, I'd knock down anything that stood in my way so I could be successful.  I wasn't sure what to say in response to these feelings.

In short, when my children fail, I feel like so much of it is my failure.  What have I done wrong?  What could I have taught better?  What example have I set that has caused this outcome?  You know, the usual.  Bring on the mother guilt.

Today, it just so happens that I got to read my favorite chapter in all of the scriptures during my study time--Ether 12.  I honestly don't know what makes it my favorite, but every time I read it, it reasserts itself as it touches my heart and helps me know it's all possible.  I think it's just that the basics are so clearly outlined.  It all just seems so do-able.  I feel an incredible amount of hope as I read this chapter.

As I read it just now, I felt how it applied to the current situation.  Here's just a couple little snippets of what I read and understood just in case you ever feel like I'm feeling (excuse the markings, they are from readthescriptures.com)...

I was reading happily along, marking things that were important to me and jotting down notes, when I came across this commonly read scripture:

27 And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them. 


I realized that my current situation has me feeling weak.  I had no response for a child who has given up.  I felt sorry and sad, but I had no words.  This is an opportunity for me to humble myself; to call on God and let Him handle it.  My handing it to Him is the exercising of my faith.  Only through this, can the weak become strong.  I realized that motherhood, though easy at times, will never been completely easy.  No matter how many children you raise, there will always be opportunities to be uncomfortable.  There will always be situations that lead to personal growth.

29  ...thou workest unto the children of men according to their faith;  

 Inasmuch as I am humble--to that degree--He will help me carry the burden, bless me with grace, guide my path and get me through it all.

6 And now, I, Moroni, would speak somewhat concerning these things; I would show unto the world that faith is things which are hoped for and not seen; wherefore, dispute not because ye see not, for ye receive no witness until after the trial of your faith. 
 
Faith is an action word.  It is action based on belief.  I was going to say "strong belief," but I don't believe that is necessarily true.  The stronger the belief, the stronger the action/faith, but any action is to be rewarded no matter how small; as long as it's in the right direction.  
 
From this particular verse, I learned that I just need to trust and trudge.  Go for it.  Don't sit around doubting because things haven't happened according to my time table, but do what I feel.  Follow the Spirit and wait for the witness.  There is bound to be a trial period.  It is to be expected.  Ride it out believing all the way.  It is only by doing this that faith is increased.

4 Wherefore, whoso believeth in God might with surety hope for a better world, yea, even a place at the right hand of God, which hope cometh of faith, maketh an anchor to the souls of men, which would make them sure and steadfast, always abounding in good works, being led to glorify God.

I do believe in God, and I do believe and hope that He will make my world better.  I can't hope for this if I don't exercise faith in order to have it.  I have to rely on Him no matter how pig-headed I am; no matter how much I doubt; no matter how hard it is to get on my knees.  I HAVE to do it if I really hope for it.  I have to overcome all of these weaknesses in my personality.

I love the idea that faith will create an anchor for my soul.  In this world in which very few know where they stand on any given issue.  I love that these simple steps can make me sure-footed.  I can be made firm and unwavering and become more Christ-like; "always abounding in good works."  In other words, I can become the kind of mom to my kids that I've always dreamed of being.  It just takes a lot of trials, humility at such times, and a whole lot of leaning in the right direction as I search for help to get me through each time.

Here's the clincher:  

37 ...thou hast been faithful; wherefore, thy garments shall be made clean. And because thou hast seen thy weakness thou shalt be made strong....


What great promises!  What a wonderful tender mercy for today.  Here's to hope and to strength!

4 comments:

Melissa said...

Amen!

vaxhacker said...

One of my biggest fears as well... as a parent, it's hard sometimes to find the right balancing point where you are encouraging without overwhelming, but not letting your child give into the temptation to just give up instead of facing a difficult thing to do or overcome.

Tonya said...

You really are an amazing mother. Very inspiring. Thanx.

Messy Jess said...

You are a very wise mother...

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