It came at 9:59 pm. The text notification that school would be cancelled yet again. I groaned. I sighed. Another snow day!
We’d just had four days of cancelled school a few weeks prior which, combined with sickness, had me and my kids cooped up in the house together for eight straight days. If I’m honest, it left me in a bad place. I felt like I was still trying to recover.
But I was determined to make the best of it. We made a blanket fort under the table where the kids ate lunch. We played in snow up to my knees. We drank hot cocoa. We watched extra TV.
And yet I felt a heaviness that wasn’t conveyed in the social media pictures. A background sadness I couldn’t put my finger on. An exhaustion with this current season. I did my best, but I was still short with my kids. I felt frustrated, but I couldn’t really figure out why. When my husband came home that night, I relayed my feelings to him.
I told him how I’d promised the kids something fun at lunchtime if they could let me work uninterrupted for 30 minutes. I explained that when I’d told them it was time for them to make their lunch, they balked. (Yes, my kids make their own lunches. I realize this makes me the meanest mom ever!) I also told him how they didn’t even realize that my cleaning off the table after lunch meant something special was about to happen…a blanket fort! (of which they were eventually ecstatic about).
I also told him how after quiet time they’d watched a tv show, and when they wanted to watch another, I asked them to wait a minute. Again, they got annoyed. They doubted whether there was a reason they were being kept from the show they wanted to watch. And again, when I revealed my plan (of playing outside in the snow together!), they were thrilled! We played for hours and they didn’t even want to come back inside for dinner.
As the words flowed out of my mouth to my husband, the Holy Spirit nudged me and I realized I wasn’t just talking about my kids. I was talking about myself.
How often do I do this very thing to God?
I believe he has good things planned for me. Until I’m stuck in the waiting. Until I can’t figure out what he’s doing.
I’m so short-sighted sometimes. I get caught up in what I’m feeling, unaware that the very discomfort I’m feeling could be producing in me change that’s necessary to sustain the very plans God has for me.
Instead of waiting in eager anticipation to see what incredible thing my amazing God has for me next, I’m like a petulant child who wants to watch the same tv show eleventy-thousand times rather than waiting to see the wonderland of beauty God has waiting for me outside!
“No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no heart has imagined, what God has prepared for those who love Him.” 1 Corinthians 2:9
So even though it is STILL snowing outside today, I am choosing to see God’s grace within my frustrations, so I can replace it all by thanking him for my beautiful, petulant children … who are constantly teaching me truths about HIM.
Amber is a wife to her husband, Steve, and mom to her two children, Ethan and Stella. She grew up as a missionary kid in the Philippines and has a degree in literature from Bethel University. She writes about food and creative endeavors at By Amber’s Hands.