16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
2 Corinthians 4:16-18
Everyday it seems to get easier. This is only because of the Holy Spirit. I am selfish and I war within myself ( James 4 tells me its because I don't get what I want…which is sleep and "me" time…so I know he's right).
It's only been two weeks since we became a family of 5 but it feels like months already. There are more seeds planted and less meltdowns (by me). There's more happy hearts and less chaos. There's more getting along and less "mine!".
I put the kids to bed at night and I'm exhausted. I know that I used every once of my "new mercies every morning" and there's a little part of me that is satisfied in that. Because I've made it through the selfish fog. (What is the selfish fog?, you ask. Oh come on! You know exactly what it is.)
In the early days, we were surviving. We were hour to hour, failing and thriving and falling apart. And in the first week, we were still surviving, dodging the enemies attacks, getting hit with plenty, sometimes loosing our cools, sometimes doing great and managing (on the outside) but inside something was dying.
And that's a God orchestrated thing.
A whole other section of SELF was dying. It was painful and I put up an epic battle for it. It was a slow burn as i kicked and screamed inside myself. But by the beginning of this week, I'd died. And I was thankful.
Now I'm not even remotely suggesting that I no longer struggle with being selfish. that would be ridiculous. At least once a day, at some point I think, "what are we doing. I can't do this." But that's the point….
I can't. HE has to. And that more of me that can die off, the more room he has in me to take over.
So moments like today can happen:
Mr. mannerly was outside kicking the soccer ball around and I had told him not to kick it real hard because it would roll down the hill and get away from him, go across the street and down into the ravine.
I watched him kick the ball as.hard.as.he.could. The ball ricocheted off the deck and disappeared into the woods. Instinctively I was upset. He'd done exactly what I told him not to and now the ball was lost. He saw it in my face, I know he did.
But I felt it. "Talk to him about grace. Here's your chance." So I gave it a few moments and I sat down next to him and we talked about what had happened, what normally happens when we disobey and then what Grace means.
I extended grace to him about something as simple as a soccer ball. But I could see it in his face that this was new to him. He's been to church, he even says he's a christian. But I could tell that grace has never been acted out.
Sometimes victory is getting everyone to keep there hands to themselves. It's getting everyone fed, bathed and in their beds by 8. Sometimes its healthy sleeping habits forming for Lil Bill. It's getting everyone where they need to be when they need to be there, and having snacks and drinks for when they get back in the car.
That's all the SEEN.
But the unseen is the eternal. And the eternal is why we were called to take care of the orphans. For each day, I feel wasted away by 8 outwardly. I might go gray early. I've lost 8 lbs in 2 weeks just from stress. But inwardly I an renewed day by day.
And the eternal glory or being a part of God's work, far outweighs all the light an momentary trouble. So I do not lose heart. ( and I remind myself not to on the hour, all day long.)