Keeping up

TBI has a way of making one feel like you’re driving an old back-firing moped while everyone else is whizzing by in their 2018 Harley Davidson with the shiny chrome banana pipes.

Do you ever feel like keeping up with life is just too much? I do. The feeling of being so extremely overwhelmed by keeping up; homeschooling four kids, being mom, tending the home, trying to heal, and just living life makes me feel like it’s an impossible obstacle. I’m trying so hard, but it’s like running on a hamster wheel, exerting energy but not feeling like I’m getting anywhere.

When I was young, my dad, brother and I would take long walks to places in Philadelphia because we didn’t have a car and sometimes walking was the preferred method to buses or subways. I could never keep up because my dad’s long Marine Corps strides were not easy for my little legs and my brother being 5 years older had longer legs too. They were always having to say “keep up.” I tried, believe me, I tried, but the long journeys we took were so frustrating to my 7, 8, 9 year old legs. I had to walk/ run the whole time because it was the only way to keep up.

I’m glad of it! Being the baby of the family could been very detrimental in coddling or babying me, but my parents never did. They never babied me and let me off easy, just because I was their youngest and a girl. They knew how tough life is and didn’t sugar coat my childhood with pillows of fluff, and candy coated ideals.

When I realised my job as a child of keeping up was twice as hard, I could go easy on myself, not chiding or berating myself because I couldn’t keep but, instead, I could feel like I accomplished something as my efforts to keep up payed off from trying twice as hard.

Today, I’m dealing with this. It feels impossible to keep up. The house stays a wreck, school work presses in, and most days I barely have a chance to brush my hair. But when I see other homeschool moms going here and there teaching Latin, Greek, music to their kids and I can barely do the math and language arts, it hurts. But I realise it’s ok. I have a TBI. Not an excuse but a huge obstacle to overcome while trying to keep up. My kids are all excellent readers, great at math, and learning. Maybe not able to do all the fun stuff and extras like soccer and scout troops as before, but they are four great kids and loved. It’s ok! I need to speak this often. It’s okay, because with TBI things are twice as hard for me but in reality, I can keep up……. just in my own way with God’s help.

Yes, my moped still runs, even if it’s slow and not very pretty but that doesn’t matter because I’m still getting there.

Viv

Finding sparkles in the ebbs of life

It’s true. Through His providence, God allows trials to hit us; our ebbs of life to actually be seasons that lead us into our flows.

We can choose to look at these ebbs of turbulent difficulties through eyes of distrust and negativity but really….

They are a GIFT.

The ebbs of life are gifts, because they force us to rest in Him, seek His face, and learn that He will perfect that which concerns us…….in His time.

And then those ebbs turn to flows of abundant riches because of Him.

The ebbs, or difficult times when we are emotionally, physically, or spiritually parched, God uses so that we press closer to Him, trusting that the flows of deliverance will at the appointed time wash over us.

When we draw away from His providence, thinking He has it all wrong, we are hurting ourselves and not understanding that these painful ebbs are precisely the dry seasons that strengthen and exercise our faith in Him.

Were it not for these ebbs, would we seek Him?

If we never experienced pain, would our faith grow?

If instead of kicking against our moments of difficulties, we allowed grace to wash over us, cleansing our souls from spiritual seasweed, and renewing our hearts with deep understanding of God’s love, the ebbs are metamorphised into flows.

I once heard Paul Washer preach that the love of God is a deep and vast as the ocean. Even though we can only see a tiny part of the ocean, it’s enormity stretches into the horizon just as we can only really understand a glimpse of God’s love, the reality of it’s expanse is enormous.

He gives ebbs so tiny tokens of His love can be spotted, just like when the ocean’s tide recedes and little crabs, sea creatures, and gorgeous shells can be found glimmering and sparkling in the sun.