Moms and small things

While unpacking books this week, I came across a forgotten journal I kept when the boys were infants. And I might have missed it among the sea of old textbooks had it not been for its small size and worn leather cover.

Marveling at God’s sweet surprise for me that afternoon, I nestled myself between two cardboard boxes and thumbed through the entries. I stopped on one dated 10/21/08:

“Today the boys cooed and laughed at each other while nursing. It was so sweet, and I almost cried. Jonah has also started to flirt and coo at me while he is feeding.  He spends time gazing into my eyes and cooing at me, and I talk back. It is such a precious time for me.” 

After having a particularly difficult few weeks getting the boys adjusted to a new home and schedule, the timeliness of my written discovery did me a world of good. It was a welcome reminder that as a mother I often lose myself to the small things in life, when I could be savoring the great joy small things offer instead. Holding hands while walking in a crowd. Goodnight prayers uttered at bedtime. Surreptitious kisses between sword fights with spoons.

As I sat devouring the stories of the small things that filled my early months as a mother of twins, it struck me that finding joy in motherhood has as much to do with savoring the small things as it does letting them go.

In the daily schedule of the mundane, it is easy to let the small things overwhelm and frustrate me. And while that’s true of any job description, it is particularly true of motherhood – a job with little concrete compensation and a meager cultural reputation.

The irony of all this is, of course, that in the middle of writing this post this morning, I was tasked with unclogging a toilet. And as I rescued a wood floor from near drowning, I thought to myself: “There’s nothing to savor about this ‘small’ moment!”

So, how do mothers savor the small moments – both good and bad? By moving on.

Instead of brooding over the fact that the twins stuffed half a roll of toilet tissue into the commode, I could choose to sound off a note of praise. Honestly, the clean up could have been much worse. And I mean, A LOT worse (Phil. 4:8).

Instead of delivering sermons on the importance of being careful, which I should mention is a skill I did NOT learn in seminary (preaching, that is), I could choose to speak an instructive word on what to do the ‘next time’ we need to go potty (Prov. 22:6).

Moving on doesn’t mean I ignore problems or spend my day in denial, it simply means not lingering over issues once they’ve been addressed.  And sometimes it means I must choose which small things I make a big deal out of and let the others go temporarily.

Moms, let go of the small things before they rob you of your joy! But, equally important, enjoy the small things as well. Write them down so you can remember them on bad days. Talk about them with your husband before you go to bed. Fill your prayers with them to keep them in your heart.

Savor the small things of motherhood, not simply because they can be fleeting in nature, but because they are proof that a terribly big God chooses to love on his own children in seemingly small, often frustrating, but precious ways.

Happy Mother’s Day dear mothers!

“But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart.”

Luke 2:19

About melissa deming

Melissa Deming is a freelance writer transplanted from Texas to Pennsylvania with her husband of ten years, Jonathan, and two-year-old identical twins, Zacharias and Jonah. The family serves at a Southern Baptist church plant in Pittsburgh - Living Faith Community Church. Melissa is a regular correspondent for The Southern Baptist TEXAN newspaper and Crossroads magazine of the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention. She is also the creator and author of HiveResources.com - a site designed to sweeten a woman's walk with Christ through devotional articles, book reviews, and giveaways. Melissa holds a Masters of Divinity in Women’s Studies from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, Wake Forest, NC, and a B.A. in Journalism from Texas A&M University.