June 13, 2015

a time for application

Back when I first became a believer, I had a devotional time (reading the Word and writing in my prayer journal) every single morning. I loved beginning my day this way, and I really congratulated myself on making the sacrifice of waking up early to do it. At least, I thought it was sacrifice then. So naive.

Now that I have three little ones and have been in a state of sleep deprivation for about the last five years, morning devotional times don't always happen. Nor do afternoon devotional times. Nor evening. In fact, sometimes a week will go by while my Bible and journal sit on the ottoman in the living room and collect dust.

And I am okay with that. This season of having little kids does not always allow for a scheduled devotional time. But there are certain times when a little encouragement from the Word is all I want.

For example, let's just say (hypothetically speaking, of course) that it is just before nap time. An incident has occurred in which child #1 hit child #2, and child #2 reacted in a very poor way. Child #1 has been asked to go to their room, and so they are upset, and in need of discipline. I am trying to calm down child #2 who is crying over being hit (but also just needs to go down for a nap), and I also need to have a little talk with child #2 about how we react when others hurt us. Meanwhile, child #3 is getting a little fussy because they are in bad need of a diaper change and would like to be nursed. Add onto this scenario that I probably haven't had my lunch yet. The microwave won't stop beeping because my coffee from that morning that I was heating up has been ready for the past ten minutes. Also, the dog is whining at the back door, and I just need to pee.

(All hypothetical, of course.)

It is at these moments when I just want to hit a "pause" button and go sit on the couch, with a (preferably fresh) coffee in hand, and read my Bible. In these moments I tend to think to myself "If only I could just have a little inspiration from the Word, or just a minute by myself to pray, then I could really handle this situation with joy and patience."

Lately, however, the Lord has impressed something on my heart, and it is this:

this is the time for application.

I have read the Word daily for years, done the Bible studies, sat and meditated in prayer. Now it is time to apply what I have learned. Now it is time to pour out instead of just soak in. Now it is time to faithfully put into practice all that the Lord has taught me.

I have the knowledge. Now I need to apply it.

If you are in my boat- busy with little ones and unable to be fed through sitting and reading the Word every day- I hope this is both an encouragement and a bit of a challenge.

Be encouraged that He will never give you more than you can handle. He has prepared you for what you are doing right now, and for what this day holds, even if you feel totally blindsided by the difficulties that may come.
"...God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear." 1 Corinthians 10:13

Also, I challenge you to take what you know, to use that grace you have been given, and to pour out to your little ones in those challenging circumstances. Pour on them the love, forgiveness, patience, and kindness that has been given to you.

"Freely you have received, freely give." -Jesus (Matthew 10:8)

Thanks for reading!

one year ago: a raspberry latte recipe... haven't made this again, but I remember it was good!

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