I like lots of progress, and I enjoy observable growth. I like living life where steps are being made and goals are being accomplished. I like fast and easy. I like being a part of big change, great strides, and those exciting “light bulb moments.” I like the finish line and the polished projects. I like the “done,” the “arrived,” and the “completed.” I like emotional “happies,” exhilarating places, and mountaintop moments. I like instant results.
But ya know what I’m learning these days?
A lot of days, parenting isn’t like the things I like.
Parenting is repeated instruction and monotonous training.
Parenting is a slow-moving race with a long-distant finish line.
Parenting is two steps forward and eight steps back.
Parenting is hard, intense, and even boring at times.
Parenting is like road construction–“in process” and “underway.”
Parenting is tedious and tiring and not for the faint of heart.
Parenting is full of U-turns, roundabouts, wrong-way’s, and yield-signs.
Parenting is itty-bitty-baby steps and teeny-tiny victories.
Parenting is a bunch of non-exhilarating moments in a bunch of non-exciting places.
Parenting is a flash of “high” and a valley of “lows.”
Parenting is a messy, persevering marathon.
So when I’m tempted to long for the big growth and the big change, and when I struggle to fixate on the absence of feel-good results, I keep reminding myself that…
not all races are filled with giant strides and easy miles;
not all journeys are clean and straight;
and not all rewards are immediate and big.
But Mama (just in case you like the things I like)…hang in there!
God is usin’ you along this path of slow and steady.
Those small, slow steps and little, hard victories are important movements.
Be faithful in today’s race and tomorrow’s journey because He sees your struggles and cares about your miles.
Fix your eyes on the author of the race, entrusting the results and the rewards to Him.
And journey with Him, knowing that not only does He never, ever leave the race or lose track of His runners, but He is the prize.