Of Cracked Fingertips and Parched Souls | Marvelous Mundane
Winter in New England announces its arrival in dropping temperatures, wind-tossed snow, and continuously-looped Christmas music playing through every store. These last few years, my hands have announced winter’s coming in their own way: cracked and bleeding finger tips. You would think I planned ahead by now, stocking up on dish gloves and fabulous hand cream, but it happens so suddenly. One day everything is fine, yet the next morning there are small lines of painful, splitting skin around my finger tips. And once this begins, there is no quick fix. Only a too-late rush to the store for gloves, a rummaging around for a now-hidden hand cream, and a few days of relearning how to accomplish daily tasks minus a few out-of-commission fingers.
My body, too, has its own way of revealing overlooked soul care: a quickly raised voice, a scatter-brained focus, and an anxiousness to keep moving to the next thing, finding fleeting satisfaction in dizzying busyness.
When I can barely make it to the end of a bedtime story before desperately running to the childless quiet, when a little voice makes one last night-time request and I barely fight back the frustration ready to burst from my heart to my mouth, when their dumped milk causes my spilled tears, these red flags wave me back to my reality. The reality that neglected soul care will always chase me down.
Because we all have a kind of autopilot, a natural orienting of our lives. An autopilot that looks to things, accomplishments, entertainment, rest, or relationships, for a sense of satisfaction, a place of safety, or a feeling of something-ness.
An autopilot that forgets our greatest needs and deepest longings are find in a person, not in a place.
An autopilot that is not oriented in remembering.
Oh, these good things feed us in bits and pieces, because these good things are reflections of who God is; His purpose, His Work, His Love, His Relationship, His rest. But these good things were never meant to replace our running to the Greatest One.
And when we forget, our souls wave these bright red flags, they flash these glimmering warning lights.
And they crack. And break. And bleed all over these little souls in our care.
And this healing we seek, this healing is in remembering.
Remembering the gospel is more than a message for Sunday morning; it is the momentum for our everyday living.
Remembering the life of Christ is not a slice of ancient history; it is present reality inside of me.
Because the work of Christ; His perfect life, His painful death, His promised resurrection, it redeems more than just my soul. This work bought purpose and power for each and every moment of each and every day. The days of whipped through to-do lists, and the days of my tear-filled “I can’t do this”, the days of fast-flowing love and the days of frustration-fueled impatience. Jesus Christ accomplished the perfection I can never attain, and He breathes His life into even the mundane.
Life is IN Christ. Life is THROUGH Christ. Life is FOR Christ.
And we must cling to this same truth for motherhood:
Motherhood IN Christ. Motherhood THROUGH Christ. Motherhood FOR Christ.