Quiet and common notions...shared here...with you! Of life ~ our hearts and our home.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Psalm 16 - In pleasant places... (part one)

Thanks for coming back for Part One of “Psalm 16 - In pleasant places”.

In all reality, I’m not sure where to start. I know one thing that I want to make clear is this; this is a hard thing for me to share… so vulnerably about. It’s certainly not at all intended to sound like a pity party or a need for affirmation. It’s just simply a testimony of how a gracious and loving God is so “jealously yearning” for His daughter to know him more. And he is working on that…

All my life I so desperately wanted to be “the best wife and mom that I could possibly be” and while I enjoy it and like it, there are some days, I DO NOT LOVE BEING A MOM!! – There I’ve said it. Now, please stop all the gasping… I can hear it coming across the web waves. However, I think I would venture to say that I am NOT the only woman out there admitting to this.
I’ve been really thinking, mulling, praying, journaling, talking to others… and the same - all over again. Trying to figure out what is wrong with me. It’s not the staying at home thing where I feel I need to get out…it’s not that at all. I love it that I am at home!! I can’t even believe it sometimes that we can actually do this (afford to do it) – I know, that some cannot and would LOVE to be in my shoes. I am really grateful for this opportunity. It’s not that I think I’m not able to handle (our) kids. I know that I do have a way about them. I myself am the oldest of nine children, and, I also choose to be a nanny for three other children (and that is a whole separate post) for a period of time and… well, I always thought I would want at least four children of my own. Uhmmmm.

I just have come to realize that I’ve had this rosy idea of what Mom’s are to be like… an idea that is totally misconstrued, obviously. It’s an expectation (put on only by myself) of what I am to become; a desire to be”the best” that I can be. And even that’s not “good enough”, in my eyes. It’s hard, exhausting, never-ending and thankless. I get interrupted, feel so impatient, easily frustrated, have a hard time anticipating their needs and, I think, we actually have pretty easy kids. Why? Why, do I get in my own way – over this? Is the problem, all about me? What are “the idols” going on here??

Now, don’t get me wrong. I do have wonderful moments with my children. I get to see them grow up (which I wouldn’t want to miss that, for the world), and I feel bad for Scott – he’s gone all day, when he comes home from work he’ll notice a “new” thing or two (which isn’t so new for me anymore) and he’ll be exuberantly sharing with me…and I’m like “oh, yeah… I forgot to tell you she did/he did…“whatever it was. Oh, and I do get those smiles, hugs and kisses that must mean that I’m their favorite mom…that I do matter to them. I am needed. I am loved.

So, what got this heart dialogue started? It must have been brewing for awhile, I don’t know, but it came to a head a couple of weeks ago when my husband and I were asked to “teach” Early Preschool class at our church for just a couple of Sunday’s out of only one month. It was NOT a lot to ask of us, I know, however I really was having an issue with this whole idea because of all the above just mentioned. How could I possibly serve other’s children when I am having such a hard time with me and my own, at home? It’s a class of about twenty preschoolers (give or take), and I was told it “feels just like being a mom – that it should be easy”. AHHHH!!!!!

Scott was really good about this. He has been my Mr. Encourager through all of this and he was pretty excited (and still is) about it. We have two more Sunday's to go to fulfill our role in helping to teach this class. I’m still nervous about it and yet, I feel like I’m going in to the next couple of weeks with a different heart focus, which I am glad about.

So the reason for these verses – how have they specifically been meaningful to me? You wouldn’t know this unless I tell you but this is not the first time that these verses have got my attention and have pricked my heart towards change. If you would see the handwritten side notations that I have marked in my Bible, you would see that I’ve been down this road before… but obviously have not arrived.

Overall, I wrote “God is most glorified in me when I am most satisfied in him.” – referring to the whole chapter.
Around verse 2, I wrote the word “Adoni” (meaning Lord and Master)
At verse 4 where it reads "The sorrows of those will increase who run after other gods." I wrote the word "idols"
At verse 5, I wrote; church, family and care group – Let my soul by satisfied…. meaning He is using these people in my life as boundry lines, etc.
And other certain words are circled….for various reasons.

Granted these things don’t or won’t make much sense to someone just reading this… it’s a Bevy-heart thing. I know what I meant as I was writing these things down, but in recently rereading this passage it really hit me (hard) as to how I approach “my calling” as a Mother.

Mothering has always been a desire of my heart, God has certainly answered my prayer, with a YES! – therefore it is now; my portion, my cup, my lot, my calling. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places. Let my soul by satisfied in Him. I’m still literally learning the in’s and out’s of this so called place. Desiring to be satisfied with intentional purpose not “just because”.

If it wasn’t for my church, friends and family (especially my darling husband) I would not understand the verse talking about “the saints who are in the land – the glorious ones in whom is all my delight”. I KNOW that I have people “In this, with me” – I am not alone. I know that because of this people I have a delightful inheritance –one that I will be able to pass on to the next generation.

I want to fully understand the verse “you have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence”…I want to be satisfied because HE IS ENOUGH, not satisfied out of the fact that I have become complacent with my lot of life. Does this make any sense?

I apologize that this was such a lengthy post. But I hope you have heard my heart journey in this particular area. Can any of you relate to me with this? Would you have any specific encouragement that you can share with me?

Please join me as I continue to meditate on God’s Word (specifically, Psalm 16:1-11) on a daily basis. It certainly has been a pleasant place for me to dwell. Now you see why this was part one?

: : Thanks, also to all for your thoughts and prayers this week, as I compiled my thoughts...I really appreciate it.


  1. I hope this comment doesn't seem "pat" and I will write more in an email to you when I have more time, but for now what comes to my heart to share with you is that I think (for me at least) when the children are so young the job of Mothering IS totally thankless. The way you feel about being a Mother will change as the children change. I called the time that you're in now "Survival" mode. It may be hard to imagine right now, but someday you're going to have real CONVERSATIONS with your babes. They're going to spout off words of wisdom and love from their little mouths that make you just stare in wonder. All of that will happen ... in time. This particular road you're traveling is different than the road you'll be on in a year or 2 years. Thank you so much for sharing with us these deep feelings and struggles of your heart.
    I love you!

  2. Thank you Bev for posting your heart in such an open and honest way. Before I say anything else, I just want to say how much of an encouragement one of your paragraphs is to me. You wrote:

    "Mothering has always been a desire of my heart, God has certainly answered my prayer, with a YES! – therefore it is now; my portion, my cup, my lot, my calling. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places. Let my soul by satisfied in Him. "

    This is a wonderful reminder of a sovereign God's perfect purposes!! I had never considered it quite that way before. It is a beautiful description of a mom's "state". It really encouraged me.

    I agree with Mitzi that part of what you are feeling may be a season. You have two very young ones, and life is organic - it changes so very frequently. At the same time I would encourage you that I think you have a lot of wisdom in this area of your life already. For someone with a high standard, having frequent times of change can be unsettling - not encouraging. I know for me, it always feels like just when I "get it down (as if! :) )" things shift and I am back to the drawing board to figure it out all over again. That can be discouraging for me. The reminder you posted "God is most glorified when I am most satisfied in Him" I believe is the key. After the boundary passage, I think the verse that has ministered to me the most recently is James 5:17-19 that describes the character of God "Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created."

    I praise God HE does not change even though my feelings, circumstances and seasons do. And the fact that He would have us to be His first fruits amazes me. It is amazing grace.

    How does this work it's way out in my life? By way of confession, there are many times it does not have the power in my life that is should. In fact - these last few days have been one of those times. By grace - as you mentioned - He uses the church as one way He ministers - and today He used you. Thank you!

  3. Oh Bevy being a mom is the hardest job in the world. I struggle at times too. If you have a bad day and yell you feel guilty. If you didn't play with them and they watched too much tv, you feel guilty. In any given day there are tons of opportunities to feel like a failure or not good enough. We all go through this.

    I know from reading your posts that your heart is in the right spot and God honors your decision to be a SAHM. I know I'm grateful for that privilege too. But no one said it was easy! Hang in there:)

  4. I think I remember feeling like this when my kids were very small. I don't know if I would have said I didn't like motherhood but I guess that was probably how I was acting. A lot of complaining was going on by me over how much I had to "deal" with during the day.
    It was during this time that I had the chance to hear Susie Kemmerer speak at a homeschool conference. What she said really struck me and helped me take my eyes off me. She mentioned Matthew 20:28 where Jesus says that "the son of man came not to be served but to serve and give his life as a ransom for many". That is what he calls us to as well. Why do I keep complaining that I am not getting any "me" time? It's not about me! Ha! :) Our calling at this time is motherhood. It is a gift and a blessing. It is also our job that we should "work at with all our might" knowing that we labor for the Lord not for men.
    So think it is 2 things.
    1. Realizing that our calling is from the Lord and we labor for him. Every little toe nail clipped. Every little snotty nose wiped. Every bad attitude addressed. The laundry, the dishes, the mess. It's all for him.
    2. Realizing how important our job is and keeping our eyes focused on the finish line where we will hear our children rise up and call us blessed (Lord willing) and we hear our Lord say "Well done good and faithful servant"

    Colossians 4:17
    "Take heed to the ministry which you have received in the Lord, that you may fulfill it."

    Maybe doing a word study on "children" in the Bible will help you see the Father's heart for little ones and that will encourage you. Just a thought. I love word studies. :)

  5. Ladies, thank you all such much for your specific words of encouragement. You have left me in tears as I read. I will take them all to heart and try to grow as I go. Thanks for taking the time to care. I really DO appreciate it.

  6. Bev,

    In my seven years of mothering I've learned something very simple. So obvious that it is easy to miss. I get tired. Exhausted. And when I get tired, it is easier to sin....have you noticed this in your children? And the more tired I get, the harder I try; then the harder I try, of course, the more tired I get. All of this to say....I come to the end of myself. Praise God!!! And when I do, LORD, may I surrender!!! Help me surrender, LORD! I am a perfectionist...praise God that he sent children to sanctify me of that! Only He is perfect!!!!! When I was a little girl....I loved playing house. And there is something good and pure in that...wanting to nurture, care, love. We are made in the image of God. I see it in my five year old daughter. But one thing that taints it is, when I was a little girl, I was in complete control. I had control of all circumstances! Now that I am a mom in real-life on this earthen soil, there are so many things that I do not control....spilled milk, sickness, dirty dishes, dirty laundry....dirty floors, etc....and then I start trying to "control" those things b/c it is the responsible thing to do....and then, I find myself in a daily grind that feels empty, numb and hopeless. God is faithful to whisper, "Show them the sunsets." We live in a valley where we cannot see the sunrises or sunsets b/c of ridges, trees, other homes, etc. "Show them the sunrise and sunset". Literally or figuratively. He is a God of hope. Praise Jesus!!! Life is hard....I do not understand everything....I've had the same complex thoughts and pondering you have had Bev. And the only place I can land is I am a sinner saved by Grace. My Redeemer lives! So I will live! And show my children likewise. I am called to mother in "weakness". Did I mention that I am a sinner? I doubt. I get anxious. I get depressed. I get angry. But yet "God's power is perfected in weakness". I cannot rationalize that!!! But yet I know it is true....I live it. He carries me. And gives me calm when I have absolutely no nerves or peace left! Praise God in your weakness!! For then you truly live! Sounds rosey...it is actually painful at times. The cross. The cost of true discipleship.

    God's perfect plan!
    Jubilee to you!

    through eyes of faith,
    ps ~ I've clung to Psalm 16 in the good and the bad. His Word is perfect. May we keep clinging.


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