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Are you seeing mud, or stars?

Does anyone else have kids who whine, or is it just me? 😂 Whining is the worst. It is annoying, unbecoming and unattractive. I could complain about my whiny kids all day, and yet…am I really so different from them?

More often than I’d like to admit, I’m no different from the Israelites in the wilderness - mumbling and muttering, griping and grumbling. It was the one thing they were good at. They always saw what they did NOT have, what God was NOT doing - faithfully forgetting His faithfulness even as he provided exactly what they needed for each day (MANNA!🙌🏻). Most of the time, they were looking at the mud, and so often it’s my default to do the same. (Like last Saturday as I angrily finished housework with this monologue running through my mind: “I’m always the one who does EVERYTHING around here.” 🙈 Sound familiar?)

In the midst of motherhood, it can feel hard to contend for contentment. I find myself lamenting my “lack” and neglecting the gifts that surround me. I see God as withholding something good from me rather than taking the time to behold Him and all that He has done and is doing. I compare or complain rather than focusing on God’s provision.

It would be easy to talk about the “mud” of motherhood all day long: the messes, the dirty diapers, the sacrifices, the lack of sleep, the discipline struggles, the mundane days. And it’s okay to acknowledge the mud - to admit that this is hard. But we do not give the mud the authority to determine our gaze, ripping our eyes away from the stars. We do not focus on the mud, because when we do so we refuse God’s gifts in each season.

What if we were women who saw the stars?

What if we counted them each day, naming them out loud to our children? What if our children only heard grateful words from our lips, and complaining was foreign to our tongues? What if we gathered the “manna” that God wants to give us each day with open arms rather than rejecting it?

This could change everything: the atmospheres of our homes, our perspectives, our marriages, our friendships, our churches, our joy, and the way we represent Jesus to the world. We of all people should be the most “glass half-full” kind of people because “our cups overflow” (Psalm 23:5).

It’s up to us: Our motherhood can be fueled by manna and stars, or bogged down in the mud. I could see my home as a prison - nap trapped, drowning in laundry, constant cries from the mouths of my hungry children. OR I could see it as a palace, because King Jesus is there with me. I could usher my children into His presence - counting the stars, pointing out the manna, and modeling gratitude at every turn.

May our eyes always find the stars - and may we count them, name them, and claim all that God IS doing as we run the marathon of motherhood.

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