Unafraid and Unashamed- Devotional Reflections #1~ Written August 15, 2012

Beautiful...

When my first son was born, I soon realized how the hours in the day seemed to slip out of my fingers more quickly than before I had a little one. ūüôā Along with the many things that I was unable to accomplish during the day, I also realized how hard it was for me to sit for an extended period of time and do my Bible study. And so the “mommy guilt” set in…Was I failing God because there were days in a row where I didn’t open my Bible? Was I a “bad Christian”? Yet, God gently and graciously spoke to my heart: “My Child, I know you are tired, exhausted, and feel badly for not being able to spend uninterrupted time with me each day. I understand! I love you with an everlasting love, and I will meet you where you are at today.” And so He did…While I wasn’t able to open my Bible each day, He gave me priceless moments with my child in which He which He whispered His truth into my heart. I felt prompted to write them down for the purpose of hopefully being able to also encourage other moms as well. I pray they uplift your heart and that they remind you of how much you, precious mama, are loved. This post begins the first of a mini-series called, Devotional Reflections. May you be blessed and feel embraced. :)\
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Small hands with tender fingers stroking her face. Piercing blue eyes staring into those of the one¬†who loves him. Arms outstretched and unashamed. It as if he says, “I am your beloved one.”¬† Oh, how beautiful and free.

It was a morning like any other, and maybe some would still consider it a normal day when all said and done, but for me, it was one that is forever etched in my heart and mind. Little did I know that one interaction would give me a new perspective on what it means to walk freely, forgiven.

Just as a stroked the last of the mascara on my eyelashes, the sounds of my sweet son could be heard from upstairs. As I made my way to him, my heart was again reminded of the tremendous gift that God had given to me by sending him into our lives.  He truly was a miracle. Having found true healing from a past eating disorder that had plagued my mind, body, and soul, I had spent years desperately praying that I would be able to conceive. Pregnancy test after test, I became discouraged by the negative results again and again. Would I ever hold a child that had grown in my womb? Would I ever have the privilege of wiping little tears from rosebud cheeks? Would I ever feel the tender hands in mine as I listened to my little one utter simple, child-like prayers before bed? Yet God knew the deepest desire of my heart; He had not forgotten the cries that poured from my soul. And, in His perfect timing, he sent us our first son, His beautifully created child.

Now my little boy lay awake with anticipation in his eyes. The soft creaking of the floor was a familiar sound for him as I approached, ready to swoop him into my arms. Reaching his bedside, I stopped, and in that moment, our eyes locked. It seemed as if our hearts beat to the same rhythm. And then, in the next instant, my precious boy did something that I will¬†never forget.¬†Without reserve,¬†shame, or fear, he reached with both¬†of his hands and tenderly¬†placed his¬†hands¬†on¬†my¬†cheeks, all the while, never losing eye contact with¬†me.¬†We were one. No one¬†and¬†nothing else mattered in that moment but our relationship. Our souls¬†danced¬†to the same song, never losing step with¬†each other. In words spoken loudly from his heart,¬†he said to me,¬†¬†“Mama,¬†I am yours. Hold me, and let me rest my head upon your chest as I trust your love for me.”

As I picked him up, I found myself reflecting upon that brief but powerful interaction with my precious child.¬†His heart knew that he could reach for me and that I would respond with unconditional love. He¬†did not have to do anything to prove his¬†worth or his¬†value; rather, he trusted my sweet embrace.¬†The Lord spoke to my heart saying, “Beloved child, I love you. You are mine. Come to me without reserve, without shame, without fear and let me feel your tender hands upon my cheeks. Let me wipe your tears. Let me hold you as you rest upon my chest. I am your loving Savior who will not reject you in¬†your messes, your hurts, your failures, or your pain. Rather, I stand here with open arms ready to swoop you up and carry you through it all. I am full of grace. I am the Lover of your soul, the One who has paid for every one of your sins¬†through¬†my shed blood on the cross.¬†You are forgiven,¬†child.¬†¬†Oh, how beautiful and free.

“Lord, thank you¬†for what you are teaching me through my children.¬† You¬†indeed,¬†are the lover of my soul. You are the one that has forgiven me. Help me to come to you as a child today, unashamed.¬†I want to trust your grace.”

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen

Just a Moment~ Devotional Reflections #2~Written on Sept. 24, 2013

As a mother, I often find myself reflecting upon those moments with my child that seem to freeze time. Recently I had a moment with my son where nothing else captured my attention more than his tender heart and actions that communicated so much without any word spoken.

The night was like any other. I tucked my son in for the evening and joined my husband on the porch to gather some long-awaited conversation from the day. As husband and wife, as well as young¬† parents, we know how easy it is to let those moments of togetherness slip away beneath the craziness of dirty diapers, countless errands, work, and just sheer exhaustion. After sharing our thoughts on all that the day had held, we went into the house only to find that the baby monitor from our son’s room was lit up–he was crying. We realized that his leg had somehow woven its leg between the crib bars and was clearly stuck. Dad quickly made his way to the bedroom and¬† fixed the problem, as dads thankfully will often do. He then beautifully reassured our boy with gentle embraces and whispers that promised security and safety as he rested. He was placed back in the crib and turned out the light once more. As he made his way downstairs, all seemed to be okay. My husband’s protective hugs and gentle words had soothed our babe. Yet, moments later, the cries began again. This was not typical of him, as he normally would go right back to sleep, and my heart knew that I had to listen to my mother’s gut: for some reason, there was still doubt in his mind that he was safe to rest his sweet head,¬† and he needed just one more reminder that all was well.

When I entered his room, he sat there with tears streaming down his baby soft cheeks. I scooped him into my arms and brought him to the rocking chair where he immediately buried his face into my shoulder and snuggled tightly on my chest. I rocked in a steady back and forth rhythm and spoke to him that he was held and that he was safe. It was the next moment that is still vividly etched in my mind. Suddenly, between the rocking motion, he propped himself up off of my chest and looked directly into my eyes. He then brought his lips toward me and gently kissed mine as if to say, “Thank you, Mom, for your snuggles that told me I was secure. I can now rest my head and let the night bring me sweet dreams.”

I will not forget this moment. It was just a moment, but it taught me so much about how the Savior does the same for me. When I find myself crying in the night, I know that He will gently rock me and whisper, “All is well.” He will never reject me in my fear, nor will He withhold his love from me when I feel so alone and weak. He is always there, ready to scoop me up in His arms and to hold me tight when the night is just too dark to close my eyes. When I need just one more reminder, He is there and will never leave my side.