I was chatting with my friend Elise today about the common struggles we face as mothers of large families. Elise has 8 children that are very similar in age to my children.
We were discussing the frustration that occurs when momma is down (sickness, pregnancy, overtired, blah, blah, blah, etc..) and how when momma is down and out, the children have inefficient oversight and management. This eventually (in a very short time!!!) takes us to the "point of what-seems-like no return."
Meals go down the tubes, the house goes by the wayside, you can't find anyones shoes or socks, and everyone becomes very cranky. Many of you can relate to this very same phenomena. If you have many children, it is like a monster that gets bigger and bigger! (actually, I think the monster is the toddler, who isn't being as well-trained as they could be...LOL!).
As we spoke, I could feel the relief of being able to share this similar struggle with a dear, dear friend. What a blessing that God provides friendships that allow for deep sharing. So cathartic!
I was telling my friend that I could observe from my vantage point, debris on the floor, books and toys strewn about the room, etc. etc. It takes less than an hour for it all to unravel and happen.
After we complained awhile, we began to realize the blessings God has given us through our large families. Powerful blessings that are almost beyond words. The struggle, the pain, the frustrations are always replaced with laughter, joy, companionship. I don't think either of us would change of thing....
When I hung up the phone, the song "Praise You In This Storm" by Casting Crowns came to my mind. This song puts me in tears at the revelation that God is ALWAYS there in the midst of tough times. We just have to listen a bit harder for his voice.
If you have time, take a listen to "Praise You In This Storm" by Casting Crowns (lyrics included): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WiRDpkoCKi8
...and I realize that some of you face serious struggles everyday that make mine look minimal. May God encourage you today.
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(Oh, just wanted you all to know I am working on a daily check-off chart for our homeschool and school duties. It is my aim to post it soon!)