Do you ever feel as if you pour out your heart and soul into something, only to wonder if it’s even making a difference? That’s how I feel about parenting. I mean, I pray for my children, talk to them daily, do my best to impart life lessons, address issues of the heart, discipline them to teach right from wrong, and just plain ol’ love on them. Yet, there are days when it seems as if I’m a broken record and nothing I’m saying is penetrating. Such moments are frustrating and I feel like a failure.
Then, there are days like the one I had last week. I had to take an unexpected day trip out of town and was greeted by stormy weather as I set out at 5 in the morning. It was nearly impossible to see anything on the road. My oldest daughter (who was at home) heard me leaving and was so disturbed by the severity of the storm, she woke my younger two children from their slumber and urged they pray together for protection as I traveled. It touched my heart so deeply as she shared this with me when I returned home.
The following morning my son awoke earlier than usual just to help me prepare for our day at co-op. He said he knew I was exhausted from my trip and wanted to make the process easier and faster. I was speechless as he and I worked alongside each other.
As we were getting ready to head out, I was slowed down by allergies acting up. My oldest daughter asked our younger children to surround me and lay hands on me as she prayed for the sneezing to stop and for there to be relief from the symptoms. I felt incredibly comforted in the moment and grateful as the day progressed because I felt significantly better.
God clearly showed me that my labor of love is not in vain. Yes, the task of parenting is challenging but I haven’t failed! I have to continue to plant the seed as God has called me to and pray for it to fall on good soil, that it will take root, and flourish in His time. The key is not to give up if we do not see the fruit of our labor immediately. Philippians 3:14 encourages us to “press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called (us)”.
Maybe you’re working towards a healthier lifestyle, trying to get out of debt, or start a business. Or maybe you’re in ministry, busting your tail for a promotion at work, or working towards a college degree. Whatever your present goal is, I want to remind you to stick to what God has called you to do and keep moving forward with what you’re working on. Your hard work will pay off as you continue to look to the Lord for wisdom, help, and strength. What a sweet moment it will be when you see a glimpse of the goal being fulfilled, as it was for me. What a glorious day it will be when your task has been accomplished! Hang in there Friend and keep on keepin’ on.