When my daughter Julie was a first grader, I was spinning more plates than a circus juggler. Wife, mom, daughter, granddaughter, corporate travel manager, as well as Sunday school teacher, member of the church choir, and assistant troop leader for the Brownies, you could say I had my hands full. Like many young mothers, I’d eagerly bought into the popular 1980’s ideal; “Today’s woman can have it all”.
It wasn’t long before I concluded the principle we embraced was a bunch of baloney. Whoever thought it up clearly never tried to do it all, was a native of the planet Krypton, or had one heck of a lot of help crossing the finish line.
Of course it was possible that I was busy running around in circles on the day that super powers were passed out to the other moms. One thing was certain. There wasn’t enough time in my schedule for everything that was crammed into it. Every trip to the car seemed to begin with “Hurry up, we’re late!”
And it was bugging me.
On a particularly chaotic day at work, the phones rang off the hook and I barely stopped long enough to take a sip of coffee. My lunch hour consisted of wolfing a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, collecting Julie from school, and bringing her back to the office to do her homework while I dove into the pile on my desk.
When it was time to pack it up and leave, I was so exhausted that it was all I could do to turn the key in the ignition and put the car in reverse.
Suddenly Julie gasped in delight and pointed toward the western skyline.
The sun had set behind the trees, leaving behind smudges and swirls of violet, lavender, peach, salmon, and gold... sublime, breathtaking, soothing, and energizing. I’d never in my life seen such colors.
“Oh my” I exclaimed.
There we sat, mother and daughter mesmerized by a heavenly canvas.
“God must really love us today,” said my little girl.
I was deeply touched by her words.
“Indeed” I murmured, stroking her hair, savoring the rare moment of peace that washed over us both.
Later that evening it occurred to me that what I’d been chasing, I already had; a rich full life with family, home, friends, a great job, a wonderful church. Who could want more? What I needed was someone to help me make sense of it all, and keep me sane. Who better than the Giver of Life, the one true Super Power? After all, He was the one who'd blessed my socks off in the first place. Through Him all things are possible, through Him comes strength and rest.
My grandmother used to say, “It’s sometimes hard to see the forest for the trees”.
How very true . When the trees stepped aside, I got a good look at the forest.
And it was beautiful.
Heavenly Father, thank you for giving us more than we could ever hope for. Help us to see beyond the busy-ness of daily life, so we may fully recognize Your grace and be truly thankful. In Jesus name we pray, Amen.
Isaiah 41:10 NIV So do not fear for I am with you, do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand