It’s noon on a Tuesday.
My three-year-old, Aletheia is having one of those days, the kind in which she is dead set on getting into EVERYTHING. A string of messes trails in her wake.
And my 16 month old, Tenley, is in the mood to cry her special brand of siren tears. The kind that would make any alarm system in the neighborhood stop and take notice.
So what do I do? I text my sister: Can you please tell me the name of that album you had on your Nook. The one with the soft strings of piano music. I need something to calm me quick!
In the midst of sending this text, The Still Small Voice captures my attention. “Why, do you turn to music, when you should be turning to me? Why not let me make you calm?”
My sister sends a text back: Whisperings by David Nevue…and I totally understand!
I brush The Still Small Voice aside and gather my girls to the table. As we start to down our food I fiddle with my phone, searching ITunes for my album of choice. My signal is weak and everything seems to take forever to load, making my search for calm feel more like a joke than an actual solution.
The Still Small Voice continues to whisper, offering me the peace I seek. I put down my phone. “Girls,” I say. “Why don’t we pray?”
I take Aletheia’s hand in mine and turn to God to find my calm. As I pray, Aletheia bends her golden head to my hand and starts to give me kisses. She kisses me, the entire time I pray.
Humble tears begin to form. The kissing so undeserved.
“Lord,” I pray. “Forgive me for the mother I’ve been today. The yelling, the short temper, the impatience, I’ve shown. Please, Lord, help me. Calm my frazzled spirit. Help me to be the mother to these precious girls that you intend for me to be. Help me to love them, Lord. Please lend me your peace, your grace, your patience, your love.”
I say, “Amen,” and Aletheia folds me into a hug. “It’s okay, mommy,” she says and wraps me tight in her arms too precious, too accepting for words.
I look to Tenley, who smiles wide. Her toothy grin speaks love all her own.
My mother’s heart swells happy. Calm.
This week in the pre-school curriculum I am teaching Aletheia, we’re learning Proverbs 18:10.
“The name of the Lord is a strong tower. The righteous run to it and are safe.”
I love these words. I need these words. Especially on days like today.
How often do we run to other things when our days come on a bit too strong? In search of peace, in search of calm, in search of safety from the storm, we run swift into music, coffee, food, whatever dispels reality and bypass God, our strong tower, who longs to make us safe.
For me, music can be an awesome and helpful mood changer, but it can never make me safe. Of course God can use any and all of these things to encourage, romance, and bolster our hearts, but only when we run to find Him first.
No matter what kind of day you’re having, no matter what string of messes trails in your wake, the name of the Lord is YOUR strong tower. RUN to Him. Be SAFE.