At church this evening, my middle daughter spiraled a little after service.
She had made some sort of Valentine’s craft and was covered in red glitter. She wanted to wash her hands, so i walked her to the bathroom and turned on the light for her. She’s fairly capable, so I walked down the hall (small church, y’all) to let my husband know we were ready to load up the van.
Somehow, she abandoned the desire to wash off the glitter and ended up wandering downstairs, and was returned to me by one of the youth girls. I asked why she didn’t come to me and daddy after she washed her hands… Apparently she never washed her hands. That one is on me… Constant vigilance isn’t a strength of mine and even less so after a day like today.
So I walked her BACK downstairs, because that was our ultimate destination… Then I picked up my youngest son, and my daughter ran back to the stairwell and was crying for her dad. “Where’s daddy? I want my daddy!” Mommy was not gonna cut it, folks. She’d had enough of me; she needed her Papa.
I got her attention and said, “babe, listen- can’t you hear his voice? He’s coming downstairs now”
“Where!? I can’t see him!”
“Astrid, listen- it’s Papa talking. Look, he’s coming.”
When she heard his voice, she looked up the stairwell again and saw my husband walking down carrying my oldest son, and all her anxiety just melted. I mean, she went from out of control spiraling to still waters in an instant. She ran up to him and he scooped her up, and carried both kids out to the van.
As I was driving home, the Holy Spirit related that picture to me; it was a beautiful picture of my relationship to my Heavenly Father.
I look down and see my dirty hands, guilty, and stained with sin. I desire to clean them but get distracted, lost, confused, and full of anxiety and fear. I sob, and cry out, and try to find my own way. Then I hear the Father’s voice and I stop. In stillness, I take in His voice and I look for Him in that moment. And I cry out, “Abba! Help me!”
I needed that after bedtime. We are implementing Chorepacks, tonight was the first night and it was like flying on a plane on fire, on a crash course toward a mountain range. Not well…with the exception of my oldest who nailed it. Kudos, buddy.
Anxiety reared it’s ugly face and my hands started trembling- things were not going the way I wanted them to; everyone was crying, and no one would be comforted…I was crying. I wanted to scream, or throw things, or cuss like a sailor… I opted for crying.
I placed baby Ingrid in her seat, still crying, and went to put the older three to bed. Astrid had peace because she had her lamby and her daddy meter filled, so I tucked her in and went in to the boys’ room. Henrik was losing his mind. Crying (albeit silently) myself, I layed down beside him and stroked his hair as he cried and I just prayed, “Abba! Help me, I need you. I’m failing and I can’t cope with the turmoil.” Instantly, my son was quiet. I tearfully kissed him and went to tell my oldest good night and to tell him how proud I am of his success with our routine. I kissed him and hugged him, and left the room.
Picking up the baby, I sat down on the couch and read from Romans:
For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption, by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father!” -Romans 8:15
And I listened to Sandi Patty sing Near to the Heart of God/Sweet Hour of Prayer. And then- peace.
Praise be to God, He hears us when we call! By the blood of Jesus Messiah, I’m a child of the King! He’s there, friends. God is really truly there with you through the chaos and distress and turmoil, waiting for you to cry out; waiting for you to recognize your need for Him. And He will answer you with His perfect peace, every time.