Every mom of young, active, children (especially boys!) needs to take a minute to read these excerpts of letters from CS Lewis. The way he describes the whirlwind of these parenting years will bring a knowing smile to your face. So “fling yourself into a chair” for a moment and enjoy:
My brother and I have just had the experience of an American lady to stay with us accompanied by her two sons, aged 9 1/2 and 8. Whew! Lovely creatures — couldn’t meet nicer children — but the pace! I realize have never respected young married people enough and never dreamed of the Sabbath calm which descends on the house when the little cyclones have gone to bed and all the grown-ups fling themselves into chairs and the silence of exhaustion.
I love Scripture’s honesty. I love how the biblical authors, inspired by the Holy Spirit, don’t hold back about despair, weakness, doubt, or fear. They don’t step gingerly around topics of pain or temptation or trouble. They are frank about the fact that life is hard.
So when the biblical writers speak to us of hope and joy and peace, we know these are real too. And in our depths of despair, we can take their hand and follow them out of the pit.
Take for example, the words of Jeremiah in Lamentations 3 that we are all so familiar with: “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness” (v. 22-23). These words are spoken from the heights, a spectacular panorama. But how do we get there when we feel crippled by the trials of life?
The same way Jeremiah did.
Only a few verses earlier he writes from the deepest valley: ”...my soul is bereft of peace; I have forgotten what happiness is; so I say, ‘My endurance has perished; so has my hope from the Lord’” (v. 17-18).
Can you relate? Hope, gone. Peace, gone. Happiness, so far gone, you can’t even remember what it feels like. What do we say to someone who confesses this? Do we recoil at their lack of faith? And yet here is Jeremiah, prophet of God, confessing that in his trouble he feels bereft of all of the blessings of the people of God.
Then Jeremiah shows us how he gets from the depths to the heights: “But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope…” (v. 21).
His soul, which had taken its last breath of hope, was resuscitated by calling to mind who God is and what He does. He is faithful. He shows mercy, He does love. He does not forget. He sent His only Son who endured the agony of the cross, in our place and for our sins, and rose again, victorious. This I call to mind.
Notice that Jeremiah’s trial was unchanged. He didn’t get a phone call that the cancer was gone. He didn’t find his enemies on his front porch asking for forgiveness. He didn’t get hired. His child didn’t become a Christian. But he had something better.
He had hope. Hope that one day, even if it wasn’t until heaven, he would know happiness again.
Today we are grateful for the news that CJ/Dad has been exonerated from the charges against him and fully restored to fruitful, gospel ministry. We could not let this moment pass without thanking so many of you who communicated your prayers and encouragement during this difficult year. Even though we weren’t able to reply personally, we read every one of your emails and our souls were comforted by the many verses, thoughts, and prayers. As we are fond of saying here at girltalk, you did us the truest kindness in the world—you prayed for us. We can never thank you enough. And thank you for reading even though our posting has been spotty. We look forward to more regular blogging in the days ahead. We may have to wait until heaven to thank each of you in person, but until then, we hope you know we are truly grateful for your friendship and care.
New@52home - there’s a new romantic collection over at 52home@home, just in time for Valentine’s Day
Sitting is Good News - Why sitting down at the end of a long day should remind you of the gospel
More Than Enough - “Will Jesus provide for you? Are you struggling to believe it, because when you do the math it doesn’t add up?”
”[H]e himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death….” (Hebrews 2:14 ESV)
“O children of God! death hath lost its sting, because the devil’s power over it is destroyed…It is sweet to die; to lie upon the breast of Christ… And you that have lost friends, or that may be bereaved, sorrow not as those who are without hope. What a sweet thought the death of Christ brings us concerning those who are departed! They are gone, my brethren; but do you know how far they have gone? The distance between the glorified spirits in heaven and the militant saints on earth seems great; but it is not so. We are not far from home.” C.H.S.
By Carolyn, from the archives: July 15, 2005
Yesterday was my mom’s 83rd birthday. My sister and I took her out for breakfast to celebrate. She loves to go out for breakfast. And as usual, the three of us talked lots and laughed even more. Then I seized a moment in our conversation to say “thank you.” That’s when my mom became uneasy. She always does, but that’s okay. I pressed through the awkwardness and thanked her for her faithfulness.
I thanked her for providing an example of unwavering devotion to God.
I thanked her for loving my dad and being faithful to her marriage covenant of 60 years.
I thanked her for constantly and tenderly caring for her 5 children and now her 17 grandchildren, and 4 great-grandchildren.
I thanked her for modeling biblical womanhood for me.
As if in hopelessness, Solomon poses this question in Proverbs 20:6—“A faithful [woman] who can find?”
Well, I found one—my mom. And realizing how rare she truly is, I am thanking God today for the life she has lived and the legacy she has given to me. I’m also asking God to help me to be faithful and to pass on this same legacy to my children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.
Who can you thank today for living a life of faithful biblical womanhood?