Worn Out

God's Compassion Towards His Children

By CarrieBeth Sherwood

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A few weeks ago I was lying between both of my boys; my husband was out of town so they seized the opportunity for a sleepover. I have two, one 6 and one 7. They are total opposites in every way. While both are incredibly sweet, one tends to have more trouble obeying and doing the right thing (with a happy heart).

While I was between them--one curling up and falling straight to sleep and the other one pretty much happily jumping on the bed, not doing what he was supposed to do--I had a thought. Technically, the one who obeys most of the time should be my favorite. Now, I know parents don’t choose favorites, but some demeanors and attitudes are just easier to work with. Anyway, it would seem that a child who was obeying and trying to please should be the most appreciated, but what I noted at that moment was that, although it is nice to have a child who obeys, I also feel so much compassion and love toward the one who struggles to obey. It sometimes breaks my heart, but in the sweetest way, prompting me to pray for him often and seek out wisdom on the best way to parent him. One of the children is easy, but one of them causes me to seek after God in an even more real and desperate way.

One of my favorite parenting books ever is “Give Them Grace” by Elyse Fitzpatrick. She says,

We think that compliant children will teach us about his grace and the gospel, and they can. Compliant, believing children are frequently reflections of his great kindness. But The Lord also teaches us of his grace and the gospel through difficult children. We learn what it is like to love like he loved. We learn to walk in his footsteps, and it is there, in our personal 'upper room', where we learn how to wash the feet of those who are betraying us. It is there, kneeling before our rebellious children, that the real power of God is demonstrated.”

Parenting a difficult child is a perfect reflection of how God feels about parenting us, his adult children who are often just as difficult, if not more, as a rebellious child. Psalms 86:15 says,

But you, Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger and abounding in faithful love and truth.

We can take away two things from this verse and this lesson that the Lord revealed to me.

  1. God’s unconditional love and compassion for us does not depend on if we act perfectly or not. He loves us and wants to be with us even, and especially when, we are struggling to obey or live the life He has called us to live.

  2. It is also a great reminder that when our children aren’t being perfect (isn’t that daily???), that God loves us in our imperfections so we can let that love flow through us to our children.


Mama Bear in Warfare

 By Brittany Rust

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I’ve never been under spiritual warfare when it comes to health. Let alone, that on top of a mountain of battles. And boy, when the body is weak time and again, it seems the spirit can become weak as well if not diligent.

I honestly wasn’t sure what to share this weekend because I’ve felt so beat down. I wasn’t sure if I had anything to give. But then, why not speak from my battlefield. Spiritual warfare is so very real for all of us so let’s go there. And honestly, looking at the last several posts I can’t help but see God is wanting to speak intimately to some weary moms out there. 

I’m going through one of the hardest seasons I’ve ever been through. It started about fifteen months ago and about a month ago, I thought it would get easier. Instead, it got harder. WAY harder. The kind of hard that beats down with one thing after another. The kind that attacks all areas of your life and family. The kind that hits so hard you want to tap out. 

Right now, I’m sitting in bed, barely getting this out, alone. I’ve moved states but my husband is still back in Colorado for the time being. I’m without my partner and best friend, working full time and taking care of our little guy. All the things I assumed would come so easy because “God is in this” aren’t coming so easy and I’m doubting. We’ve been in urgent care two out of our three weekends here because with Roman it’s been one thing after another. Then I got sick this week. Like, so sick I haven’t been this sick maybe ever. And then tonight, as if our health wasn’t being attacked enough, Roman got pink eye...again. 

As a mom, I see my little man suffer and mama bear comes out. I want to fiercely protect him—to make him better. But I can’t. All I can do is help him along the best I can. 

Here’s how I’ve been feeling this week: I can take a long, spiritual battle. I’ve done it before. But my kid—not so easy. My perseverance is limited and my patience thin. Mama bear doesn’t like waiting for the storm to pass for her little guy who can’t kick sickness and misses his dad like crazy. I feel helpless. I feel guilty.

I’ve been pretty upset with Him this week. I’ve questioned and doubted. I told my friend this week, “I assumed it would be an easy transition because I thought God was in it. But it’s been so hard and now I’m questioning everything. Does this mean God isn’t in it?” 

She encouraged me so well (thank goodness for sisterhood, right?!). She said,

”Because it isn’t going easy does not mean God isn’t in it. It means things like that are just hard. Peace does not always come in the journey because journeys are a struggle with ups and downs. Peace will come later. Kinda when you go on a hike and it’s hard but when you are done it’s that moment you take a breath.”

She’s right—the right path isn’t always going to be easy; life is just hard sometimes. And then I was reminded, also this week, that God uses hard times to call out our perseverance. It’s something I’m struggling to have as a mom but that doesn’t mean I get a “get out of jail free” card because my kid is involved. Perseverance just needs to go to a whole other level! 

What I’m trying to say is this: Spiritual warfare will happen. And when it effects your kids, it will poke the mama bear within and perhaps cause you to fight or flight. But what if God just wants you to stick close and keep going? One foot in front of the other, wearily trudging ahead. 

Stand firm and keep fighting the battle, mama. Don’t lose hope. Keep the faith. Choose to endure. 

Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us. This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls.
— Hebrews 6:18-19

How do you and I keep our head above water until relief comes? Flee towards Jesus. Have confidence in Him, not the surroundings. Trust the anchor to hold until the storm passes. We aren’t guaranteed an easy, breezy life. But we are promised a steady Savior in the midst of our chaos and uncertainty. Are you anchored by Him? Tethered to his unwavering love and care for you? He won’t leave you alone in the storm. His door of hope is just ahead. Don’t give up, friend. This too shall pass.


For the Days You Just Can't

By Becky Beresford

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Hey there, Momma.  

Could you do me a favor? From the depths of your sleep deprived soul, could you tell me how you are doing? No really. How are you? No sugar coating. No fake smiles or half-laughs. I really need to know because it’s been one of those weeks, and I feel myself starting to believe it. I’m starting to think Jesus should have given my littles to another put-together momma. Someone who resembles Mary Poppins and cooks like Rachel Ray. I look around at these flawless moms tackling life and think, “if they only knew.” If they only knew that my hot mess exterior mirrors the messier thoughts inside. And so, dear friend, please be honest. Because my mind knows I’m not alone, but today my heart needs to hear it. Today I need my sisters to tell me they get it. To stand in solidarity, with hands lifted high—coffee in one hand and the Word of truth in the next. I don’t want to pretend things are okay. I want to be real because this need for authentic community outweighs the risk of the unveiling. So, this is my invitation. This is my unmasking. I want you to see my genuine home, a place where the beauty and the broken are combined. A place I welcome you to now.

I’m a momma to three young boys, one of whom has Autism. He is a total joy and gift like the rest of our little men, but so many days I feel like I’m orchestrating a sea of chaos while drowning in self-doubt. I want to communicate with my sweet boy, but sometimes I don’t know how. I want to give him what he needs, but I’m not sure what. I often look at the circumstances in our family and wonder if it’s me. Am I the reason things aren’t more put together? Am I doing it all wrong? My husband was recently diagnosed with Autism as well, so now I am trying to navigate two different, but similar waters simultaneously. Most days I feel like I have no idea what I am doing. I try to accommodate the needs of everyone while maintaining my sanity, although this is not guaranteed. Throw in health issues, financial struggles and career moves, and it creates an immaculate storm of overwhelm. These are my ‘just-survive’ days. These are the days that I just can’t even.

When the meltdowns are fierce, and my children are falling apart, it takes everything in me to not plop on the floor next to them and cry collective tears. I feel the weight of the world. Every momma does. We feel the weight of raising children to be functioning adults who can thrive and succeed and love others like Jesus loves us. It is the heaviest and most heavenly honor anyone can have, and sometimes we feel like we’re messing it up completely. When the demands and deadlines and schedules pile up, we can look at ourselves and begin to believe we are not enough for our babies. We feel so less than. We’ve missed the Pinterest perfection mark by a mile and a half. We are undone and outdone. And that is when it happens. In that precious, imperfect moment, our gentle Savior kneels down and joins us on the floor. He meets us in the insecurity and pain. On our hardest days, He knows we can’t see ourselves for who we really are. But HE CAN. And He longs for God’s Daughters to get a sacred glimpse from the throne room above.

  • When we can’t see past our sins, He sees our sainthood.

  • When we can’t carry the load, He carries our hearts.

  • When we can’t heal the pain, He binds all wounds.

  • When we can’t stop the chaos, He gives us peace.

  • When we can’t hold it together, He holds our whole world.

  • When we can’t find the strength, He makes us resilient.

  • When we can’t do it alone, He reminds us He lives within.     

Ladies, we have a calling that is not for the faint of heart. Being a mom requires everything we have and more, and sometimes we feel like we just don’t have anything left to give. But our faithful Father does not leave us to weather the storm alone. He anchors our reality in who He is, not in our “cans” or “cannots”. Our worth has never been based on what we can accomplish, but instead, it is rooted in what He has already done. It’s hard for mommas because we’ve been trained to DO! But when we embrace God’s capacity to cover every detail of our lives in grace, it relieves us from our duty to perform. We don’t have to earn God’s goodness when it’s been given freely. The Bible says,

My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.
— 2 Corinthians 12:9


If that’s the case, then our weaknesses actually lead us into the deepest kind of strength. Our barely-surviving days can do what they are meant to do: highlight God’s unmatched ability, not our inability. Here, the power of shame is taken away and is miraculously exchanged for the power of Jesus…a power that is about His provision, not our perfection.

Breathe it in, beautiful one. Take in His kindness and let go of the guilt.  Because perfect moms don’t exist, but perfect Love does. And out of all the women in the world He chose YOU to be your baby’s first love. Not Miss Poppins, not Rachel. You. Just as you are. Hand-picked from heaven to hold your child’s heart.

We are covered, Mommas. Our whole lives through. Especially on the days when we just can’t even.