Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Loved: How to Speak Truth When Lies Persist

I have loved you with an everlasting love;
I have drawn you with loving-kindness. Jeremiah 31:3b
The enemy knows when we are most vulnerable.

And he hisses the lie into our ears when our guard is down, when we are so distracted that it is hard to tell where the words come from.

For me, it was during the second load of laundry in the midst of the third sick day of four children alternately sniffling, coughing, and toilet hugging. And diaper filling overflowing, in the case of my Little Man.

As for me, I had been sick the day before, but hadn't rested for a moment. And now the new day had begun and husband was at work.

I had mopped, changed, read, cooked, wiped, loaded, unloaded, washed, dried, wiped, wiped, wiped. Bottoms and noses. It was 8:30 a.m.

And the lies began. When I found that the washer had done a trivial job cleaning Little Man's bedding of the mess from his diaper and I set it to rinse again, from over my shoulder a weight settled, and a hissing whisper came...

You are all alone! No one else cares about keeping things clean around here. You're the only one who ever gets stuck with these messes. Your day never ends.

And you are all alone.


The words repeated, over and over, until the aloneness turned into anger, and the drudgery turned into darkness, and the worry turned into weariness.

It was oppressive.

Anger at the situation itself and at my husband for not being here roiled around in my stomach and singed its' way up into my throat, and I began to react poorly to every cry of, Mama! that I heard, and every cough, and every sneeze, and every pitter-patter run to the toilet. And in my sin, even the mantra W.W.L.G.M.D.? didn't penetrate.

You are all alone.

And hot tears that refused to fall dangled from my eyelashes as I leaned over my daughter's miserable body and wiped the tears from her eyes and smelled the full diaper of the little man clinging to my leg and suddenly

truth words came.

And I smiled. Truly! Peace filled my heart and I raised my eyes heavenward, and whispered gratefully over my shoulder...

I am loved!

And I repeated it, aloud, over and over, during every act of service my family required, needed.

I am loved. I am loved. I am loved!

You see, the enemy of a mama's heart would have me believe that all I do here, in this small sphere of home, where the children and I are always together, is pointless. Because I'll do it all over again tomorrow, and the next day, and though there is a whispered, Thank you, Mama, as I wipe a brow or offer a drink or pull covers to chin, the rest of the day can seem so unloving.

But it's a big fat lie. Because
I am loved.

How do I know?

Because of his hand on my cheek when he's coaxing a smile. Because of the good fruit I see in my children because of my constant presence. Because of the pink. Because I have breath.

Because though I am unlovable, I am still His loved one.

As he says in Hosea:
"I will call them 'my people' who are not my people;
and I will call her 'my loved one' who is not my loved one,"and,
"It will happen that in the very place where it was said to them,
'You are not my people,'
they will be called 'sons of the living God.' " Romans 9:25-26
And that is how I speak truth. Because a little man clinging to my legs is also love. I just need to remember that.

Join me?

29 fellow travelers shared:

Kathi said...

Joining you.

And praying to *remember* every minute of every day.

mamabear said...

I have lived many days like you describe, when everyone is sick and needy, including Momma, and the messes never end. I think they're the days we shine the brightest as Moms. We get to the end of ourselves so quickly and call on the Lord so visibly. Children notice and they're blessed to be reminded that Momma needs Jesus as much as they do.

Beautiful post!

Sandi said...

Count me in.
Wanting to be a truth speaker too.

Linda said...

So beautiful Elise. You are doing work whose value is beyond measure, and He loves you with unfathomable love.
I have often heard those same lies, even in this empty nest season of life. But over and over again I am reminded that there is nothing more important than the people and the relationships the Lord places in my life. On a day when it seems I have done nothing the world would call worthwhile, I know that He sees.

Cindee said...

For some reason when I read your beautiful post the words of "Fairest Lord Jesus" popped into my head and I found myself singing, "Who makes the woeful heart to sing". Indeed He does (make our heart sing) because He loves us. Thanks for sharing these words of truth with us. Blessings on you!!

Anna said...

Elise,

Thank you for being you! You've encouraged me today with this reminder. There have been many times as a mother when I, too, have heard those lies echo through my mind - especially in recent weeks when illness has been in our home. It's easy to succumb to them when our bodies are weak.

I'll join you in trying to remember what I know is the truth!

I hope that you're all feeling better. :)

~Anna

Deidra said...

God used that word about His everlasting love for me, to return me to Himself, one dark lonely day long, long ago.

What you said.
I'm joining you.
Thank you.

Aimee said...

yes, i felt my heart embittered yesterday...that i am only the "maid" around here. i was angry and sullen...your words have helped to heal this morning.

Sarah said...

Thank you Elise, for letting God use your words to speak to my heart this morning. With everything I am, thank you Father! I am loved!

Amy @ Raising Arrows said...

I was given your post via an email this morning. Beautiful thoughts.

Abby Goff said...

I love your blog! I love how encouraging your words are, how honest :) I also took a moment to read of Layla Grace. Thank you for introducing such a sweet, strong family to me. I think you would really like 'Bring The Rain'. The link is on my blog. It is really good to read Audrey's story from the beginning. That blog changed my life :) I just realized I made my blog private so I will need your email address so I can add you to the invited reader's list :) Have a blessed day Elise.

-Abby Goff-

Andrea said...

Keep speaking the truth....
and walk, walk, walk in it dear sister.
Me? I'll be praying you get a mama-break soon...
and that's the truth!! =)
i love you, Elise...

emily said...

you so beautifully capture the mama's heart, elise. thank you. thank you mostly for speaking Truth ... we are LOVED with an everlasting love!
praying for you now, for a day filled with sweetness and rest.
emily

Kristin said...

Oh, Elise! Those were words I needed to hear. I am slowly climbing out of a particularly down-in-the-dumps season of weeks. While I can usually manage to paint a smile on my face, the smile has not taken roots in my heart. With these lovely words of HIS, I am slowly taking HIS hand and pulling out of this valley.

Beth said...

That was beautiful! I've heard that terrible hiss often in my ear...thanks for reminding me, I too am loved.

Mary B said...

What an absolutely beautiful post! I am beyond the small children stage, my only child is almost 22, but I so remember days like you describe. Isn't it wonderful that we have a Loving Saviour that will let us come back to him, even when we have times where we listen to those "I am all alone" like phrases?!?! Did that make sense? Thanks for reminding me that I an NOT alone.

Angela said...

I experienced one of those days last week(and no not JUST one but I'm remembering this one,lol)...

Ready to crumble under the load of caring for the wee ones (run a home daycare) ready to crumble with the storms my family and I have been facing these last 18 months..reading to keep listening to those lies..While journaling and crying out to God, a three year old came up to me and said,"Miss Angie, your doing a great job"..well talk about almost bawling...I wrote in my journal,'Lord is that You talking to me through him?"

Than later in the afternoon, MORE storms came pounding and I was busy getting snacks ready. The flesh wanted to act out in anger, frustration and selfishness. The Holy Spirit kept calling out to me,,'just love Angela, love'..the same child came up to me again and said,"Miss Angie, your beautiful"..

This time I did get tears in my eyes and I bent down and said,'oh Keegan, and your handsome.'....

sigh...

Congrats on being voted top 100

Lynn said...

Visiting from the Top 100... and your words spoke to me. How often I have heard that very hiss... and I am so thankful that God spoke to you... letting you know that you are loved beyond measure.

Blessings...
Lynn
nealatthecross.blogspot.com

Tea With Tiffany said...

congrats on being picked for top 100 through Internet Cafe Devotions. Nice to meet you. :)

Tonya said...

I have found myself convicted of whispering lies to myself in areas of my life. So good. We must whisper truths of God's word!!

Bobbi said...

WOW...I know I'm late to comment...but this brought tears to my eyes. Thank you...I needed the encouragement today!

Miss Bee said...

Oh Elise, I read this post as I'm sitting at the computer while on seemingly endless hold for some warranty information on our broken washing machine - which also means that the laundry is piling up and already today I've been 'reminded' by my children of the clothes that they need to have washed, etc. Being constantly on call, always needing to be on hand for any little thing that comes up, drop one thing for something more immediate, and on and on and on. You KNOW what I mean. What a beautiful reminder your post was(No, I am not alone - mothers everywhere are doing the same things) and the scripture from Romans was a tear-filled blessing.

How can I once again say a so inadequate "Thank You" for sharing your heart and allowing yourself to be used of the Spirit as such an uplifting blessing to others? I love you , Elise, and truly thank the Lord for your love for Him.

Critty said...

I was visiting the top 100 and oh what a stop this has been. Congratulations on the top 100 and I see why you are a overflowing cup.

Your words have spoken so deeply to my heart today. My week started off rough. Really really rough. Your post encouraged me so much.

Beautiful.

mamabear said...

I just clicked over to see the 100 Internet Cafe blogs, and found your blog! Congratulations! I've been reading here several months. I love that you are so humble! You probably aren't going to mention this award on your blog, so I just wanted to let you know how deserving you are. I always get excited when I see you have a new post up. Always beautiful words written here--and so humbly, with no commercial things on the side bar. Simple, beautiful, and all about HIM. Love it!

Patricia said...

"truth words came...I am loved."

Wonderful encouragement.

Congratulations on the TOP 100 award!

Blessings!

megan said...

oh, yes, elise! don't i so often listen to those same exact hissing words...lies and yet, i listen. thank you for your honest words and encouraging ones that remind, we are loved!

thank you, thank you, thank you,

megan

Kwana said...

Beautiful post thank you. I needed to read this. Now going to put in a load of laundry :-)

Beka said...

Have I mentioned lately how He uses you to bless my heart, so often?
Lots of love to you, dear friend, and I'm praying that sickness has left your home and that you have a blessed and delightful day.

Lynnette said...

I needed that today. Thank you.

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