Friday, 7 February 2014

Creating space for God

by Sherry
Life is crowded.

If I could write down all of the responsibilities that pull at me, plus the list of all of my creative ideas and good intentions, it would be infinite.

It’s like the house that is over-filled with furniture. After a while there is no room to walk, no room to function. My mind and heart can seem so cluttered that I feel as though I am being squeezed from every direction. How can a person function on this earth, with all of these cares and pressures, without blowing up and going bonkers?

There is one way: by creating space for God.

No matter if there is not one square foot left in my earthly tent, I am going to carve out a huge room for Him, because…

…He deserves it. He is the Master, my Creator, my King, my Savior, the Lover of my soul. 
There is no one else in my life that deserves my attention more than He does, no one.

…I can’t live without it. I don’t know about you, but often my smiles hide insecurities and pressures and all sorts of other ugly things. There are huge cracks in my walls and chinks in my armor. I don’t even understand who I am or where I am going most days. Don’t waste your time telling me about a new self-help book or a new counseling method or a new way to meditate that can help me; I already know there is no help outside the Helper. But when I open wide the door to Him, He comes right into the middle of my chaos, and He fellowships with me, and He puts things in order. I wish you could see the before and after pictures…

…My family deserves it. Yes, I know that it takes every minute I have available to take care of all of them, but if Mommy does not have a God-connection, then they better watch out! Jesus is the One who makes this chick tick, not food or reading or writing or running or crafting, or anything else. Mommy needs time with God or she will not be Mommy, she will be a foul, hateful, self-seeking mess.

Having said all that, there are certain rules to my space with God. For one thing, if there has to be a sacrifice made to spend time with Him, it is on my end, not on the end of the people I love.

In other words, my husband and my children are not going to have to fend for themselves while Mommy seeks God’s face, but Mommy is going to go without a little sleep, or, if things are quiet and everyone is content, she is not going to be found sneaking off to do something “fun” before she has laid face-down before the throne.

And that is another thing; given the opportunity, I choose God first, fun second. If my time is limited for reading, watching movies, or listening to music, then every book I read will be about serving or glorifying Him, every movie will encourage me in godly living, every song will be according to Philippians 4:8:

Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.

Here are some of the ways I have built room in my life for Him:
  • I have put the kids down for “quiet time” and taken the first half-hour for reading the Word and praying, often while nursing an infant to sleep. 
  • When my husband worked the late shift, I would put my children to sleep and then wait the hour or two until he came home from work spending time with God. 
  • Being an early riser, I have found that I can sneak out of bed a half hour or so before everyone else and enjoy my Master while the house is still quiet. 
  • I have determined to take every available moment to include Him in my daily life; while I am pushing a humming vacuum, or folding a pile of towels, any task where my mind does not have to be directly engaged. 
  • I play godly tunes, especially the type that is based on actual scripture, often, and prefer this to all other types of music. 
  • I have Bibles stationed all around my house, and one in my purse, so that God’s Word is never far from me. 
  • When I find my mind is too noisy to concentrate, I write scriptures down, or I read from a little book I have written in that has reminders, quotes from famous preachers, etc. that will help me to slow down and focus.
Folks often assume that a mom that stays home and dedicates her life to her family is ineffectual for the Kingdom of God and is not engaged in being a witness or making disciples. I beg to differ.

If I have diligently sought the Lord and am seeing Him work in my life on the micro level, then the macro is more powerful. I have all sorts of testimonies of wonderful things God has done through me because I have been diligent to cultivate a sensitivity and a humble familiarity with His ways, every day learning to rely on the power of His Holy Ghost. Mothers at home are not wastrels of their faith, they are magnifiers. As they grow in Christ, their very lives testify to His glory and goodness, they don’t even have to utter a word.

So each day I listen so that I can obey, so that He can be glorified in me, and He can feel welcomed into the spaciousness of my crowded life.