Events and circumstances are often used as catalysts for the freedom, change, wholeness, or transformation God is trying to work out in our lives. I’ve been learning all year about how I cannot and do not hold everything together. God has been showing me so clearly this year that I cannot even hold myself together, I cannot get everything right and perfected every time. I cannot hold my children’s world together. I cannot hold my husband’s world together. I cannot control or determine their feelings or actions.
I have been learning freedom in the truth that while I cannot and do not hold all things together, I do follow the only One who does. I know that in Jesus all things are held together (Colossians 1:17), and as I follow Him and listen to His Spirit, I am able to be held together. As I listen to Him for how I parent, how I run my home, how I love my husband, then I can step into His freedom and peace and rest in my every day life…because He is the one holding it all together…not me.
I thought I had been learning all of this pretty well. And maybe I had. This pregnancy was definitely the hardest of any of my pregnancies, and through the exhaustion in it, I had already been learning to let go of so many things. However, it seems that there are even deeper levels to this release and rest that God wanted me to know.
Over two weeks ago now, I was already getting a sense that something was “off” with the end of Silas’ pregnancy. Labor wasn’t coming the way it had with my other two. Five days past my due date, I woke up in the middle of the night with a sense that something just wasn’t right. After being induced later that next day, things didn’t progress the way they had in my previous births. Thankfully, because of all of this…because of what I had sensed…I was not exactly surprised when the surgeon and my doctor walked in to tell me that I would need to have a C-section. We had already exhausted every other option. While nervous, I had peace. This was right.
It was very apparent to me that not only had God allowed the C-section as an act of grace to get my sweet Baby Silas out into the world with me, He had also allowed it for me to learn deeper levels of letting go of all of my efforts to hold things together. Nothing quite “stills” you like being on pain medication, not being able to lift anything heavier than your 8 lb. newborn, and not being able to drive for two full weeks. Everything weighs more than 8 lbs. These new restrictions brought to the surface how much I still try to hold things together. For the first time since becoming a wife and a mom, I literally could not hold anything together.
That first day home, I didn’t even leave my bedroom. Just Baby Silas and I hanging out all day in my bed up in the master suite. My super amazing stud of a husband did not even bat an eye at the new weight he would be carrying. From the moment we came home, he has been committed to giving me a solid recovery time so that I would heal well. He has done everything for our little family…literally everything. As I observe him, I see God giving him the energy and the heart to care for me, our home, our big boys, to go grocery shopping, to plan and cook meals…to carry us right now. It is humbling to be cared for like this. The love my husband has for me is so full and amazing.
Yet, twice now, I’ve already overdone it. It’s like I won’t learn. It’s like I can’t accept grace, love, and rest. I find so much satisfaction and worth in doing and accomplishing…in holding things together, that already at least twice in the last week, I’ve found myself pushing ahead of where I am right now. Instead of trusting my husband to run the plan, I’ve stuck my hands in his plan, trying to also accomplish my agenda…and ultimately find satisfaction in accomplishing things. Last night, in tears I was sharing with my husband that I’ve really got some issues when I have been given every resource and reason to rest and I still won’t rest.
My father-in-law has been hear since last Friday and is staying until my mom gets here this Friday. We have help and support. And yet, I push past the very obvious gift of being able to rest. I push past the work God wants to do in my soul in regard to rest. I push past the truth that I don’t actually hold everything together, but He does. It is time take a good hard look at how much I tie my value and worth to accomplishing and achieving. This is the moment to ask Jesus to transform my very heart to these deeper levels of trust, freedom, rest, and peace.
How all this will look past this season is still unknown to me. I will have to return to carrying some family responsibilities again very soon. But I am hopeful that this time is on purpose to solidify deeper realities of peace in my soul. I am hopeful that when returning to everyday life, I will be able to integrate a new understanding of peace and rest into my roles and responsibilities.
So, I am surrendering myself to rest. I am surrendering myself to this gift. I am incredibly grateful for a husband who is working hard to let me rest…a husband who wants me to rest right now. I am beyond thankful to have parents and in-laws who are incredibly willing to help us, to be involved in our lives and love on our kids.
I am slowly learning to be at rest in my very spirit as I let go of all attempts to hold my little world together. Because the truth is…I don’t actually hold it together anyway.