Blog  /  Parenting  /  Finding Faith Even in My Failure

28
Jan
2015
Sue Birdseye, Family Matters, Grace based parenting

 

I’ve wanted to write for days…well, probably weeks, but life keeps getting in the way.  I wanted to be in a better place before I shared.   I wanted my blog to have a title like, “5 Steps to Parenting Perfection” or “No Regret Parenting” or “I Figured It Out!!!” But alas, I don’t have a blog to share that is anything remotely relating to those titles.

 

Being a single working mom with a quiver of children can be exhausting, overwhelming, and downright frustrating at times.   I often feel as though I can’t do a single thing well, on-time, successfully, or without drama. I have a lot of those days.

 

Today was one of those days.

 

It would take way too many words to share the whole story, but suffice it to say I have consistently disappointed one of my children by forgetting something three times in a row.  He is gracious and kind, but he has just got to be disappointed and frustrated with me.

 

I am frustrated with me too.

 

I want to be better…particularly at parenting.  Sometimes it feels as though I do more wrong than right. I keep thinking that if my circumstances would just get better, I could be better.  If life would just be easier, I could get some sleep and then I could be more loving, kind, joyful, peaceful, patient, kind, good, gentle, faithful, and organized…(sometimes I wish organized was one of the fruit of the Spirit!)

 

Just fix my life and make me better!

 

I think I’m no longer going to look for nice little bows to tie things up neatly or useful lists that will give me 6 steps to conquer my struggles and give me perfect results.  I’ve looked too long and hard. I believe God hasn’t given me those things because a quick fix isn’t His plan for me.  His plan is more about getting closer to Him than it is about solving all my problems and changing my circumstances.

 

How I wish I could give you (and me) a list of things to do to make life easier… I definitely can’t.  But maybe what I can do is show you where God is bringing me.

 

When I became a single mom I learned about God’s provision and peace in the midst of great sorrow and suffering. I felt closer to the Lord than I ever have.  I felt His presence in ways I had never felt it before.  I learned how to lean on Him, how to rest in His arms, how to find strength in His word, how to trust Him when everything seemed hopeless. I learned so much about hope, peace, and faith…so much about my Lord. I guess I expected that life would eventually get easier or at least more manageable.

 

It didn’t.

 

In fact, in ways it has become more and more challenging.  And I am one tired mama. And yet, in the midst of the exhaustion, God has continued to provide and love and offer me grace upon grace upon grace. I’m in awe. Somehow or another, God gives me strength to start each day and His mercies are truly are new each morning. I know this but sometimes I don’t live this way.  Sometimes I carry the burdens of yesterday to today.  I get caught up in my failures rather than my faith.

 

Each day I struggle to understand how to do it all.  All I feel called to do.   I can’t figure out what to drop.  I can’t “drop” one of my five children.  They each need me in unique and beautiful ways, but I cannot deny it is exhausting to carry the weight of parenting alone. Someone once told me that God doesn’t give us more than we can handle…I beg to differ.  I’m most definitely living a life I can’t handle.  I barely have a grip on things.

 

But maybe I don’t need to have a grip on things…maybe I just need to have a grip on Jesus.

 

Maybe the key to faith, even in my failures, is understanding the love of my Savior. Understanding that faith isn’t about getting it right, fixing what I think needs to be fixed, finding the perfect solutions, or following the steps to success. Faith is about trusting Him, not just with my eternity, but trusting Him with my day…my morning, my afternoon, my night…and every moment in between.

 

Maybe what I’m seeking…the quick fix…I already have.

 

It just doesn’t look like I thought it would.  It isn’t fixed by this world’s standards, but rather it is a heart fixed by a Savior…it is love regardless of how loveable I am…it is failures overcome by faith.  Again, as I often, if not always do, I come back to Jesus…the author and perfecter of my faith. I can’t make anything perfect…but Jesus can.

 

Jesus can make my faith perfect…and that is enough.

 

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.”  Hebrews 12:1-2

Sue Birdseye

Sue Birdseye is the proud mama of 5 children – college to kindergarten! She is walking the unexpected road of single mom with a lot of love, a touch of humor and a serious lack of sleep. She hopes to encourage other moms by sharing her story and her faith. Sue is a regular contributor to Mom Life Today, Fredericksburg Parent and her own personal website SueBirdseye.com. She has also written for Flourish Magazine and Thriving Family Magazine. Her first book, When Happily Ever After Shatters, will be out in March 2013.

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