Monday, February 18, 2008

I am so, so tired. Sleep is this elusive thing these days. At night when the rest of the family is watching a movie (Lately though, the Jeeves and Wooster series) I can't stay awake for it and I always fall asleep. But then about 12:30, 1:00 *bing*! I'm awake. Wide awake and my mind gets going. Sometimes I lie there and worry about elections. But most of the time I just think about stuff. Lots of stuff. I try to stop thinking. I say "OK, one, two, three, stop thinking." Then I lie there and think about not thinking. Can a person not think?

I worry about the kids. When R. and I had S. back when, I was sure I could be the most perfectest mom ever. I wanted so much to raise a bunch of really godly warrior children for Christ. That would go out and take on this dying culture. They would be better prepared than I was to face the onslaught of deathly ideas. I wanted them to have a clear straight eye and confidence in their step. (I still do.) I remember when we had just found out that I was pregnant with #5. Our pastor (Not at our current church) asked us rather incredulously, "So, how many of these do you think you'll have? I mean, how many do you think you can afford?" I felt so sad and discouraged at that. If we had been called onto the mission field, I'm sure he would have been the first to encourage us to have faith and watch for the Lord to provide. But having a family and raising them for the Lord wasn't seen as a "calling" and therefore not a work of faith. But I was sure God would see our desire to please and serve Him and would see us through. And He has, thus far.

I need to keep reminding myself of these things. It is harder to be optimistic and have that faith when you get older, I notice. You are so much more aware of all the things that could go wrong. And all the effort involved. And how limited you are. I worry about making wrong desicions. I worry about the kids not really learning to know the Lord. I know how deceptive sin can be. I worry about them not having a passion to guide their own families to come and that all our efforts would be lost. I know so much better now that it is all God's grace and no effort of my own that will give them real salvation and power for Christ on this earth, and I am so much more familiar with the fact of how little I deserve any of His interest. I worry about my own physical limits. I worry about plain getting tired. I worry about R. and how hard he works. We have put so much into just raising a family and making it day to day. I wonder where we will be in 20 years.

I guess though, learning to be optimistic in the face of real fears is faith. Not the blase, "oh, it will be OK" but knowing that life really does have it's risks, and that God is the God of them all.

And now, the baby is crying, and the kids are sick. And that's "the next thing" (as Elisabeth Elliot would say.)

11 comments:

Susan in Elk Grove said...

Be anxious for nothing.....oh, YOU know! Easy to say, hard to do, eh? :-) I was reading your post and thinking "She could turn this paragraph into a prayer, using what she wrote for specific requests." Then I thought, "Actually, ANY parent could use this post to pray for their child(ren)."
BTW, that surely wasn't your CURRENT pastor that said that to you, was it? Shame on any pastor that would even think to SAY such a thing!
Hang in there, dearie! We can pray for each other.....

Joyce said...

Kerri,
You are a realist, which is a good thing, I think, but like Susan said (and you know already) we need to cast these very real fears upon the Lord.
That pastor certainly didn't believe that children are a blessing from the Lord if he thought it foolish of you to welcome more that four children into your home.
May the Lord bless and encourage you. :)

mykidsmom said...

I have suffered with sleep problems for years. The older I get, the more it seems to be affecting me.

I too think it's sad that your Pastor had that reaction. While I DO wish the unwed moms shacking-up with boyfriends would limit the number of children they produce (for the children's sake), I think we need more people making it their mission to raise children for God. I wish SO much I could have more children- it's my chosen career. I am hoping and praying for medical advances to make that possible, but for now my present 3 are keeping me busy. And I seem to be also reaccessing what I am doing to train and teach them in the fear of the Lord. So I quess we all could use much prayer in that area.

kerri @ gladoil said...

Oh Susan, OF COURSE it wasn't our current pastor!! YOU know he would never say such a thing!!! One of the many blessings of our church is the welcoming of all the children, first or seventh. :)

Hmm.. I never thought of anyone thinking that though, maybe I better go edit.

Mrs. Darling said...

My dear friend and bosom soulmate Kerri,

I could have written this myself! I worry, worry, worry worry all the time about the kids and what they will have to face in the future. I kiss Peters neck with all its baby rolls and find myself praying that his little neck never sees the end of the noose or the sharp cut of a knife.

I look at my kids feet and pray they are never strung up and beatne on the bottom of those tiny feet like the man in Tortured For His faith!

I know I shouldnt think about those things but they come unbidden when I think about my kids. Lately I've been giving serious thought to changing my prayer time. I usually pray in bed at night but the last several months Ive realized that some of my worst fears for my kids come out in the night time when I begin to pray. I need to change that to morning when there is new hope and new promises instead of at the end of a tired day.

I hang onto the verse, "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart and lean not unto thine own understanding; in all they ways acknowledge Him and he shall direct thy path!"

LynAC said...

I don't have any thing to add really. I hope you can get some sleep and the kids get well soon.

Marbel said...

Late coming in here, but I am so with you. The unbidden thoughts that come, like Mrs. D mentioned, just plague me.

As for the pastor's comment, bah! I am so thankful for the young Christian moms coming up who are having lots of children! I'd have more if I could. We need them.

Anonymous said...

Kerri,

Rest assured... you will make mistakes. You will make wrong decisions. It's going to happen.

Take comfort that your Lord is much bigger and more grand, and more gracious, and more wise than our foolishness.

I must confess, I envy your children... every last one of them.

They have a mother who works hard for them, and toils day in and day out, for their good.

They have a father who works hard to provide for you, and for them. Who loves them and worries for them.

They have two parents who love the Lord, and want to raise godly seed.

They have a big sister who helps see to it, that they learn what they need to learn.

They have a big brother who looks out for them.

I know you're not perfect, or even approaching it, but if B. and I can only do as well, when it's our turn.

Praise God that we have even you, and people like M. and K. to look to for guidance.

Cheers.

A.

kerri @ gladoil said...

Aww A., You're too sweet.

Thanks for the encouragement. Everything looks a little more cheery when we focus on God's abilities rather than our own, aye?

See ya, my friend

LynAC said...

Yoooo hooooo Keerrrrriiii where arrrreee yooouuuu??????

Marbel said...

Echoing Lyn - it's time for a new post, Kerri!