From Mia’s Jesus Calling book today, assuming I’m on the right day because, let’s face it–I’m a little scatter-brained when it comes to days. And dates. Or what time it is. What holiday it is or isn’t. And where my keys are (in my hand). And where my necklace is (around my neck).
Nothing is as wonderful as knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. I have given up everything else and count it all as garbage. All I want is Christ. –Philippians 3:8
Okay, so actually that’s from the Bible. And it’s pretty straight forward. Nothing here on earth even compares to the awesomeness of knowing God’s son. I get it.
He can take away my sweet new shoes. He can take away the Kia that I love so much and replace it with my old Saturn. He can scrap plans to this new house we’re building. He can make Caleb lose his job and all the things that we own.
I talk a big game. But there has not been one day that has gone by since April that I don’t ask God why He took my baby. I struggle with it. I can’t move past it. I maybe even feel a touch angry about it.
I really feel like God gives me a little taste of heaven when I sit on the couch at night curled up with my kids reading a book. Or when I’m driving down the road and they’re singing songs together in the back seat. Or when Cheyenne keeps the jokes rolling for hours on end. Or when I’ve had a bad day and I check my phone and see a million selfies of Mia. Or when Merrick insists that I take a walk with him to see the sunset because it is so beautiful, and I do, and it really is beautiful.
I can’t count those things as garbage. I can’t count my baby as garbage.
I can’t even wrap my head around the comparison. My family is no way, shape, or form, garbage.
So I skipped ahead to tomorrow’s devotion:
The Lord gives his people strength. The Lord blesses them with peace. –Psalm 29:11
“The harder things get, the more I help,” the book says. “See your challenges as chances–chances to depend on Me more than usual.”
Easier said than done, I guess. Still doesn’t explain much, but it is encouraging nonetheless.
Did God give me strength? Because I feel weak. Did He bless me with peace? I am tormented. Do I depend on Him more than usual? I did for about 30 days.
Admittedly, I’ve been in “Toni’s-got-it-all-figured-out” mode for a while now. But just like my confusion and hurt, my need for God doesn’t just go away after a certain allotted time has passed. And though I learned so many lessons this past spring, maybe now–when the rest of the world has continued to turn; when no one else is crying with me–maybe now is my time to truly lean on Him and Him alone.
My kids aren’t garbage, but I know now that these moments with them are fleeting and not guaranteed. My family is precious to me but God loves them even more than I do. And He loves me, too. I may not ever understand why it happened; but this is an opportunity for me to just trust Him. And though I can’t grasp the concept, the most wonderful parts of life here on earth are nothing compared to the glory of God in heaven.