It sure didn't take long for "balance" to be restored and my focus to be renewed. As soon as I began pouring myself into my necessary responsibilities the peace began to return. Most specifically, after a few minutes of listening/singing along to Seeds (specifically volume 4: purpose), my emotions began to settle and my thoughts brought me closer to God instead of allowing the temporary wedge to grow.
Specifically, the words of the song "Listen to Me" (Psalm 34:11-14) really caught my attention and it caused me to truly stop and listen. Sometimes it is more than just the words of a song or words of scripture that change you, it's the message from the Holy Spirit that penetrates your heart while you are listening.
The words of the first verse is what caught my attention. "Come my children, listen to me; I will teach you the fear of the LORD." It caught me and reminded me of my greatest responsibility in raising my children. The greatest concern I should focus on is their spiritual growth. How many times have we as moms and dads ever said the words, "Listen to me!"? Some days, countless times! As a mom, I should be saying, "Come my children, listen to me. I will teach you the fear of the Lord.". I admit that for many years, I was confused about that word fear in regards to God. I thought it meant be "scared" of Him because He has the power over us to do as he pleases, that He was sitting on his throne waiting to dole out judgment and punishment. To our modern ears, the word fear conjures up a negative image. However, that isn't what "fear the Lord" actually means. To "fear the Lord" means to be in awe of Him. The only fear in the traditional sense of the word is for us to fear being separated from Him. To fear means to be fully rooted in His love and to be reverent of Him. Respect. Unity.
This afternoon, I did a search about other ways to describe the fear of the Lord. I came across this description and I love it.
The Fear of God is rooted in our appreciation for God’s Holiness. God is Holy and the gift of Holy Fear strikes within us a deep awareness of this holiness as well as a deep understanding that we must be made holy before coming into his full presence. The gift of fear helps us to appreciate that we do not simply walk into God’s presence in the spiritual equivalent of jeans and a T-Shirt. Holy Fear inspires us to be clothed in holy attire, to get ready to meet God. Just as we might bath and wear fine clothes to visit a world leader, we reverence God enough to be robed in righteousness by his grace before we go to meet him. Holy Fear makes us serious about this preparation.
That is my responsibility as a mother in raising my children. This is the fear I need to instill in them. Amazing responsibility when you think of it. Every other thing I can ever teach them pales in comparison.
While I was soaking in the words of scripture/song as it played, I was reminded of a fantastic article that a friend shared recently on facebook. When I read it, it moved me tremendously as it reminded me that being a mother IS a ministry. I've mentioned before that people in my life have been vocal about saying that I'm not being "light in a dark world" by being at home and by teaching our children at home. Though I KNOW the truth, it always a welcomed boost to read encouragement that confirms it. You can read the article here. If any of you moms are wondering if what you do matters, be sure to read it! Though so much of it made me think and gave me much needed encouragement, there was a specific paragraph that really brought to heart the role I have and the fact that motherhood IS a ministry. My role in my home does matter (SHAME on those that have told me differently!). The author says:
Look at your children in faith, and see how many people will be ministered to by your ministering to them. How many people will your children know in their lives? How many grandchildren are represented in the faces around your table now?
Our human eyes are limited. We can't see into the future. The world says right now doesn't matter. Oh my, but it does. The author's words absolutely helped me to regain my focus. My purpose is clear. These three blessings that I spend every single day with ARE my ministry. I cannot in my limited vision have any idea how far reaching their lives will be. God can see. God knows. That is why it is so important for me to be diving in with everything I have to tell them, "Come my children, listen to me; I will teach you the fear of the Lord." It's overwhelming and I admit to failing more than succeeding, but God can take the small seeds I'm planting and nurture their growth into amazing adults with deep-rooted faith and fear of Him.