Today, I am so honored to share the voice of a dear friend and beautiful, godly woman with you. I met Kris at a blog conference a couple of years ago and her words have captured my heart. I hope she speaks into your life today as she has done mine. Oh, and of course you must follow her blog, Always Alleluia.
When the week piled up on me, and Friday rolled around I'd not once made it out of bed to exercise. It's been months (oh, how that makes me cringe) since I've run and I can tell in every ugly way that my routine has gone slack. Friday morning before the sun and birds, I hear (and ignore) the 5AM alarm.
I have a hundred reasons why I choose sleep over sweat and the bed is warm--the house, still quiet. There's no pausing this day, but with the covers piled up over top my face I stave it off a bit longer, and drift in and out of dreams for the next hour and a half.
Before long it's their little voices I hear down the hall, in loud whispers that may as well be their normal voices, I hear, "Mommy's sleeping", and then footsteps, giggling by my bedside. I can fool them still. But there are others who know me better than that.
Hours later a friend calls to take my temperature and over miles and sound-waves, she hears my fine is not so honest and I suppose I should apologize for half-lying. I'm thankful for friends who know me underneath my false fine's and Okay's.
The truth is harder to tell some days.
I don't want to be a whiner or complainer, or that girl who is always troubled and anxious, but the truth is, there's a war raging here. I press in to the Word and before the dawn cracks her golden smile across the sky, I've heard hard words that remind me that this path I choose, it's riddled with potholes to fall in, and boulder to climb over.
The cost of discipleship is what I'm talking about. This business of picking up my cross and following is so much harder than I imagined. The deeper I go into Christ, the more challenging (and rewarding) the journey becomes. There is no room for complacency.
A.W. Tozer said, "Complacency is a deadly foe of all spiritual growth. Acute desire must be present or there will be no manifestation of Christ to His people. He waits to be wanted." Desiring God means we live an active faith, one that looks at a holey life and recognizes that grace can fill the holes. When we experience the fires that refine our faith, we can choose to go through the--to grow through them. ~Excerpt from Holey, Wholly, Holy: A Lenten Journey of Refinement
Motherhood is such a place of refinement--an unending tempering of my steel heart and my faith, bringing me lower, to learn to lift Christ higher.
I erroneously imagined motherhood to be some glowing place of rainbows and ice cream cones and ever obedient children. All these years into it, I'm wrestling with not only my children's struggles against sin, but my own as well. We're all working out our salvation as Christ refines and purifies our hearts.
I'm both teaching and learning grace among the scattering of too many toys and laundry that is never finished. The school work piles up, and there are meals to be planned and made and dresses to be repaired.
The weight of all this can crack a girl right up the middle.
And through all this we're called to holiness. It's a weighty calling at least. We are called to lay down our lives--and mothers, we understand sacrifice.
I thank God for the friends who understand how hard this road can be.
There is another companion who walks with us through the fire. Christ knows and bears our struggle:
For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (Hebrews 4:15-16 NIV)
There is purpose in the process.
It is not for our own glory we serve, but rather for His glory, that all might see Him in us, and praise Him rather than us ~ Holey, Wholly, Holy: A Lenten Journey of Refinement
As a sequin-wearing, homeschooling mom of four, Kris is passionate about Jesus, people and words. When she's not writing, she enjoys taking gratuitous pictures of her culinary creations on Instagram. Once upon a time, she ran 10 miles for Compassion International. She is the author of Holey, Wholly, Holy: A Lenten Journey of Refinement, and blogs at Always Alleluia.