“When the tasks seem impossible and I feel that all motherly love is gone, instead of focusing on the problem, I ask God for a ‘renewed strength.’”
Probably my favorite thing about having children is those unexpected moments when they say or do something that brings a huge smile to my face. Like when I overhear my five year old teaching my two year old how to pray: “… Please help all the old people and all the sick people to get better …”, after which my toddler repeats the prayer in her mumbled learning-to-talk language. Or when I hear the quick and loud pitter-patter, pitter-patter of little feet running through the house, and then the littlest one comes several moments later with a slow, pit-pat, pit-pat. It’s those moments that make motherhood the most fulfilling job.
But as with any job, I have also experienced long and tiring days that left me exhausted, both mentally and physically. Despite my deep love for my children, I found that their request for one more bedtime snack or one more story was more than I could manage. These were the moments when I felt that my physical ability to take care of my children was waning. I began praying about it. In 2 Corinthians 9:8, God promises that I should have “all sufficiency for all things.” In fact, it is written in the same verse that He is able to make “all grace abound toward [me],” and that I should have “an abundance for every good work!” Why wasn’t this a reality in my life?
“Run and not be weary”
Then my prayer was answered in an unexpected way. My husband was away on a business trip, and towards the end, I ran out of strength. The answer I received came from Isaiah 40:29-31:
“He gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might He increases strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall, but those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.”
I literally needed what was written in this verse: to “run and not be weary,” to “walk and not faint!”. But what is the requirement in this passage? It is that I “wait on the Lord.” But what does that mean? To me, it meant that I needed to trust completely in God. I was focusing on my own inability to do the task instead of trusting in God’s ability to help me. Instead of spending time in my thoughts wishing that things were different, I had to trust that God would give me the strength I needed.
It takes humility to ask for help
It took humility to do this the first time, and every time, I must “humble [myself] under the mighty hand of God.” 1 Peter 5:6. God requires that I am 100% reconciled to His plan for my life. If I want to tell God what I can or cannot bear, then He is not able to “renew [my] strength.” And if I want to pray that the situation change, then He can’t give “power to the weak.”
Now when I feel my limitations closing in around me, my perspective has changed. When the tasks seem impossible and I feel that all motherly love is gone, instead of focusing on the problem, I ask God for a “renewed strength” so that I can show Godly love to my children. I don’t think about how the situation should change—that they go to bed more easily or that someone were here to help me—but I reconcile myself to the situation and ask God for His help.
As a result, I experience a “second wind!” Instead of my children seeing an irritated, complaining, discontented, and exhausted mother, they see an example of one who is patient and kind, even in the midst of adversity. This has become a liberation for me and my children, and I hope that many others can experience the same!