You know those folks whose laughter and smile are simply contagious? Today’s guest blogger, Laurie is just one of those gals. I “met” her online via our mutual friend Kelli, then actually experienced her awesome energy and Jesus-filled heart last summer at SheSpeaks. Laurie is authentic and enthusiastic, as well as an incredible writer. (In fact, she’s such an incredible writer that she will be getting TWO books published soon!) Show her some love both here and over at her place by leaving comments below! (Plus, be sure to connect with her site or click HERE so you can be first in line to get hooked up with her book(s) when they hit shelves! Oh. And rumor has it there’s a free e-book in the midst of all these shenanigans, too.)
Are you ready to be wowed? Get ready. It’s go time with our latest installment of Everyday Jesus!
Wowed daily by Him,
When Sharita asked me to share an “everyday Jesus” moment for this post, my first thought was, “Sounds great!”
Off I went through life over the next few weeks, eyes open for those everyday gifts and moments of goodness. Problem was, I couldn’t find any everydays… and without those, how would I do this assignment?
You see, life right now is chaos. I’m mom to two former foster kids, one of whom had a breakdown 18 months ago, ended up in a psych hospital (twice), then was admitted to residential treatment. It’s been 15-hours a week of joint therapy and driving to visitations, with added doctor conference calls as a bonus. And then there were my other three daughters—a tween with eyes perpetually set to “roll,” a 7-year-old who loves figuring out how things work (cue: me, locked in a bathroom last week when she took off the doorknob), and a preschooler who, I think, only comes up for air 3-4 times a day in between stories and questions.
There just aren’t any everydays. Crazydays, yes. But not everydays.
Fortunately, my crazy doesn’t scare Jesus one bit. He reminded me of this a few Sundays ago while my kids were dancing in the back of the church. I know, this sounds ultra spiritual, but bear with me a moment. You see, I’m one of the teachers at our church. As such, people see me up front a lot, and as much as I try not to let this change how I behave during worship, it just does. Instead of simply singing the words to the songs, it’s more like this in my head:
“Let the glory of the Lord, rise among us . . .”
Oh, no, the kids are dancing too close to the stage.
“Anna? Come back closer to mommy so I don’t look like a mom who can’t control her kids people can focus on worship.”
She moves closer, all the while rapturously smiling, singing and twirling for Jesus.
Photo courtesy of Ninniane via Flickr
I’m annoyed, I want to focus on worshipping God, not keeping my kids from embarrassing me distracting people, so I pull her close and whisper in her ear,
“Honey, mommy’s trying to worship God right now. I need you to sit still and let me worship.”
As the words hung in the air between us, my heart sank, and I saw it:
Loving her is worshipping Jesus.
Scooping her up and dancing together, singing for the Lord would have been worshipping Jesus.
Being a mother to her, fully present in that moment of joy …worships Jesus.
The shame stung. So did the tears. I wanted to curl up and pull the polished concrete floor over me.
But He pressed in close, “It’s okay. I know what you were trying to do. I want to show you a better way to be close to me. One that includes her, and flows through who you are as a mom.”
His tender acceptance, this gentle wooing into worship authentic and wild and… undignified like David’s, maybe?* This sweetness of Jesus pulling an ashamed mother’s heart close enough it pressed shame out. It all took my breath away that morning.
That morning, He gave me a peek into His throne room. It was precious, and almost too much for my heart to hold.
But that’s the best kind of moment with Him, isn’t it? The ones that aren’t afraid of our crazydays, pierce straight through the broken and false, and love us into His arms again. The ones where we suddenly realize He’s been standing there with us in the frustration or the stress or the trying-too-hard.
It’s those moments, that I realize every single moment is an “everyday Jesus” moment. (Even if I can’t find an everyday on my calendar to save my life).
* 2 Samuel 6:22
Laurie Wallin is a speaker, author, and Certified Life Coach who helps people find joy in the midst of life’s losses and challenges. As mom to two former foster children deemed “failure to thrive” and “unadoptable,” she’s had to find her new normal and fight for joy. She writes weekly for her own blog , monthly at Not Alone (for parents of special needs kids), and shares daily tips at her Facebook page . She also loves being part of Facebook’s Moms Together team, where she gets to rile things up and rekindle joy about every aspect of motherhood. Laurie lives in Southern California with her hubby, their four girls, and her 80-lb Lab that thinks she’s a lap dog.