Look to the East {A Message for Weary Mothers- of which I confess I am one}

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For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? Romans 8:24

I’m looking across the table at my daughter and my mouth spills poison before I have time to retract the words. They tumble out, like scrabble pieces as I scramble them in my mind. 
Parenting. 
Hard. 
You. 
Make.
We are in a battle of the wills, and trust me, this mom knows she can’t win.
I wonder again, why?
Why, do I return to the thought it’s supposed to be easy
Perhaps it’s not supposed to be easy, but maybe at least… could it be steady?
Our boat is always rocking, and I find sea-sickness is the norm. 
I’m queasy.
What did I expect?
I wonder it all…knowing that it hasn’t been easy for those I know who have weathered storms but still made it safely to port again. 
They lived to tell. 
Will I live to tell?
I wonder it daily, how this story turns out and I am living in the moment, longing to know the end. Longing for the happy ending. Heart and stomach intertwined and Living Words swirling about within, gently chiding, “Why do you doubt?”
And I confess, broken-
I do, Lord. 
Forgive this weak child.
Some days I just don’t want to hear about everyone else’s wonderful, perfect, well behaved, thoughtful, athletic, gifted, wonder kids. Who also love God, read the bible daily and get straight A’s. Who follow perfect parents into white picket fenced homes and do everything, well…perfectly. Sorry, I confess, it makes me a little sick in my stomach. Sad, actually. I long for that which is not and faith reminds me to trust when my circumstances stare me down defiantly, spit in my eye and shout “No”. 
I remember  how I used to feel after I watched the Brady Bunch and longed for that which was out of reach.
Completely unrealistic…yet?
Only child, of a single parent, I yearned for something I could not name. 
I longed for a happy ending but did not even know what it should look like.
Beyond the grasping hand. Ever reaching. 
How do you perceive something you’ve never seen before?
How do you grasp that which is out of reach?
Never seeing, ever reaching. 
Yet hope lingers in the hearts of God’s children because He is the Author of Hope.

There is still God residue within, unseen.
Dormant seeds laying in wait. 
Winter may be cold and seemingly barren, but beneath the white, frozen blanket is
dark earth nestling seedling. Even one lone seed, buried deep. Longing for something it knows not…yet.
Still within the soil, hidden, hopeful yearning for light.
Heir apparent awaiting Spring’s thaw.
A happy ending in sight.
Oh, Mother, longing for your prodigal to come home-to you, to Him-
Look to the East, He comes with the dawn…
Take heart.
Lift your eyes.
His promises root deep.
Cling tight and let go
He is trustworthy.
He sees you.
His reach is everlasting. 
And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.
Romans 5:5
Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.
Hebrews 11:1

So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. 
For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
2 Corinthians 4:18
Although our battles may not be exactly the same, we all have them. Let us remember to deal gently with one another, giving grace, upholding truth, fighting the good fight as God leads us individually and together. If we do this we will be too busy to judge one another, for each day will busy us with love and tears enough.
In His Grace, Dawn

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17 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Jennifer @ JenniferDukesLee.com
    Feb 13, 2013 @ 06:15:03

    That God Residue … I see it here, strung in and through your words. So. Very. Grateful for your story. You're the first ever in the #TellHisStory. And I'm truly honored to have you writing in community.

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  2. Dawn Paoletta
    Feb 13, 2013 @ 06:35:00

    Jennifer I feel grateful and honored to take part, thank you. Battling discouragement today and some difficult challenges but know His faithfulness well. When I saw you were having this (Facebook feeds) I felt inspired…and God adjusted my attitude as I wrote the post. It's truly beyond me, how He does that…this writing is all gift from Him…and still even as I linked my inner critic showed up to ruin my spontaneous joy and inspiration. I look forward to reading others links!

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  3. Denise
    Feb 13, 2013 @ 06:35:10

    Amen.

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  4. Anonymous
    Feb 13, 2013 @ 06:40:26

    Thank you for sharing these words about holding on to hope in the darkness. I am encouraged.

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  5. Recovering Church Lady
    Feb 13, 2013 @ 06:46:51

    In your reply to Jennifer's comment you mentioned how attitudes get adjusted during the writing of something like this. So true and so like God to gently move in and rearrange while we are trying to understand what is going on inside. You are a passionate and “all the way” girl my friend, give yourself a break in the parenting track. There simply is no such thing as a well adjusted and loving kid all the time. The good comes and goes, and what people write about or take pictures of are only the good times. Love you.

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  6. Tracy
    Feb 13, 2013 @ 11:33:23

    Hi Dawn, I know how you feel. It does seem to be a choppy sea, this thing called parenting. I love what you say at the end: “Although our battles may not be exactly the same, we all have them. Let us remember to deal gently with one another, giving grace, upholding truth, fighting the good fight as God leads us individually and together” Very very true.God bless friend and thank you for linking upTracy

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  7. marty
    Feb 13, 2013 @ 11:51:32

    I know that sea sick feeling…every parent does…may God bless both you and your daughter a gentle and quiet spirit towards one another…one of repentance, forgiveness, and restoration.

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  8. SWL
    Feb 13, 2013 @ 12:01:51

    Dawn, We are all a work in progress. The old saying that should be both scary and comforting to you….the apple does not fall far from the tree. You are a truly amazing, incredibly smart, strong and kind person. That may not have been as obvious when you were 12:) Please know you are not alone and that it will all be fine. Sharon

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  9. SWL
    Feb 13, 2013 @ 12:02:25

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  10. Dawn Paoletta
    Feb 13, 2013 @ 12:23:03

    Sharon, of course you know you are always right! Love and hugs! So many funny things to share when I visit!

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  11. Dawn Paoletta
    Feb 13, 2013 @ 12:24:19

    Wait …did I used to say that to you about the apple? I think I did. 😉

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  12. Rachel
    Feb 14, 2013 @ 01:24:08

    yes. this very weary momma hears this and exhales. i find nourishment in your words today, with a teething little one who wearies me sometimes and gives me greater life at others. He is greater. He is mighty. He is strong when I am so very much not.

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  13. Lisa notes...
    Feb 14, 2013 @ 02:34:59

    I remember having days when I felt like I was such a horrible, horrible mother. Grace, yes. We all need to take it and give it. Over and over. Grace to you, friend.

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  14. Anonymous
    Feb 14, 2013 @ 02:37:13

    so glad i'm not the only one! praying for you as you learn what this grace in mothering is. (as do i)…visiting from emily's today

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  15. Robert J. Gerryts
    Feb 14, 2013 @ 18:09:45

    Love the seed under the snow imagery towards the end. So wonderful to think they wait to sprout.-Bob

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  16. Emily Wierenga
    Feb 15, 2013 @ 03:28:22

    oh friend. if it helps, even those perfect families–they're broken. you're just more honest, tis all. we're all just kind of hanging on, wondering if we're doing anything right, longing for the day when God will make it ALL perfect again. love you.

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  17. Pamela M. Steiner
    Feb 15, 2013 @ 15:08:26

    Someday I will find the courage to write the true stories of our lives…the real behind the scenes nitty gritty details of what really happened…not what was portrayed in the perfect family portraits. I have three sons. They are all uniquely and wonderfully made…but NONE of them were or are perfect by any stretch of the imagination. We fought, we cried, we pleaded with them and with God, we could not believe or understand the why's and wherefores of their imperfections and struggles. But GOD, in His neverending love and mercy, reached down and gave compassion, strength, and comfort in the dark days….and lifted our feet up out of the miry clay and helped us to stand firm on the ROCK, in spite of the angry waves surrounding our souls. HOLD ON TIGHT dear weary mother! God is still on His throne, and He has not forgotten you or your child. He's still working on her and your behalf. There WILL be better and brighter days ahead. Just keep looking UP! NO ONE, NOR ANY FAMILY is perfect, regardless of how they may appear. Love ya girlfriend. You are not alone in your struggles.

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