The thermometer might read 104 degrees, and the old farmhouse might be excruciatingly hot and still. Sweat might be dripping down my neck, and all of the little bodies around me might be glistening with their own perspiration, but children don’t seem to give the heat no mind. They hover around while I nurse Malachi. They lean their fluffy curls against my arm. They lay a sweatyÂ hand on me in some way, little fingers tickling like a sweat-bee that typically gets swatted on a hot day like today.
As if in a furnace, all of the closeness and hovering makes me want to explode!
But then I think about the dear affection that is bringing us all together – their love for me, for each other, for humanity -and I’ve just gotta take a deep breath and appreciate their sweet closeness (as uncomfortable as it may be). When I am patient in the annoying, over-heating, claustrophobic moments, the girls can understand me better when I calmly explain, “I’m a little warm right now, would you mind giving me a little space while I nurse Malachi?” (When I’m not patient, I end up making them feel like their expressions of intimacy are annoying… and that’s just plain old heartbreaking!) Responding in the right way when everyone is a little “too close for comfort” is a small thing in the big scheme, but I think it’s worth the effort. The beauty is that these are God-given opportunities for me to lay down my life and show my children what the gospel means to me.
These thoughts were spinning around in my mind when I came across this encouraging article from the Desiring God blog: Motherhood is a Calling (And Where Your Children Rank).