For those of you who don’t know anything about me, let me give you the elevator version of my life for the past 17 months. I know that’s an exact number. I could have rounded up to a year and a half, but sometimes you have to scratch off each month on your battlefield scorecard and count each victory as important accomplishments. So…back to the last 17 months…
After resolving I would never get remarried after my divorce of 13 years, I met a man that I can only describe as the love of my life. <Man. No words. Love him to the moon and back.> Fifteen months later, we tied the knot, “Brady Bunched” our family together and blended my 13-year-old daughter and my husband’s 8-year-old daughter and 6-year-old son. We are blessed. We are happy. We are content. But we aren’t without mess. Divorce is messy. Remarriage and blending families is even messier. Sometimes it’s glorious and other times it’s like dropping a chocolate milk shake on a white shag carpet. And I’m not just talking about a simple spill. This doozie is the type that hits the edge of the furniture as it’s going down and begins a rapid spinning spiral that slings its contents in EVERY direction. That’s us on some days. Like I said…messy.
I can’t say I always handle the messy days well. They are hard and complicated, because blended families are ridiculously competitive and our kids are still in the process of learning that vulnerability in our family is safe and there is enough love to go around. I can’t blame them; it’s an elusive concept for me as well. It seems so easy to shift my view from the blessings in front of me to the chaos all around.
I don’t think I’m alone in this. Isn’t it so easy for us as women to focus on everything except what’s in front of us? After all, we think it’s our job, right? We lose focus and then…we worry. And as we worry, we try so very hard to “handle” it all. The struggle is real.
We pray. We take deep breaths. We get advice from godly friends. We pray. We wake up in cold sweats. We dig into the word. We confide in our husbands. We pray some more.
There are so many verses in the Bible that COMMAND us not to worry, but we often do so when we lose focus. This is not only counterproductive, it’s not the way God designed it. Look back through the Bible. God very seldom showed anyone the entire picture ALL AT ONCE. He is gracious with us. He knows we can’t handle that much and so he shows us little bits at a time. Little bits so we can focus on Him and his daily portion of blessings. Be it mana or a lamp for our feet…God shows us what we need for the moment. We can choose to focus on what we can’t control or we can choose to focus on the blessings God has placed in our lives.
So, here’s my challenge to myself and to anyone who wants to join me in this journey: As we approach the busiest season of the year, let’s take a moment to focus on what God has placed in front of us. It may just be a sick snuggle bug in your lap on a busy morning. Choose not to focus on what you aren’t getting accomplished for the day. Instead, focus on the precious time you get with your child. Take the time to allow God to redirect you. Change your perspective and you will be amazed at the blessings you see around you! I’m going to focus on the beautiful mess that is my life and be thankful, not only for the wonderful moments, but the tough ones, as well. It will not always be an easy task. I will fail some days, but God never will. He will continue to show me my blessings and the beauty in our crazy, wonderful life. I’m thankful for his faithfulness to me and so very thankful for this journey.