“You can’t!”

Those were the words I kept hearing over and over again at the start of this school year.  Whether from other (well-meaning and typically supportive) people or in my own head…you can’t.  You can’t do it!  There’s no way!  It’s just crazy!  You’ll never make it!  In my typical red-headed stubborn nature I set off to prove them…and myself…wrong.  After all I can do anything I set my mind to, right?  I needed to pull myself up by my bootstraps and just do it!  Oh boy was I ever wrong.

The odds were stacked against me I suppose.  How in the world was I ever going to be able to commit to being at church every Monday and Tuesday morning with my two boys after getting Emalynn on the bus…sometimes by 8:30 a.m. after driving for nearly 30 minutes.  Meaning I have to leave at what time?  That would also mean that they would be in the germy, slobbery nursery for over 2 hours every single Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday mornings and Wednesday night.  That in and of itself is an epic disaster of illness just waiting to happen.  And for what!?  Surely someone else can sing some songs and lead a bible study group.  They don’t need you!  What do you have to offer?  Then there’s my chronic illness coupled with fatigue.  You are going to burn out!  You’re going to land yourself in bed and be no good to anyone!  You will be a stay-at-home mom who is never home!  What is wrong with you!?

This year in our amazing bible study group of young moms we studied the book of Matthew.  We studied how Jesus is our one true King and all about His eternal Kingdom.  I learned about His healing power, His strength, His peace, His wisdom, His love, His mercy, His grace, His compassion, His forgiveness, His faithfulness.  I learned that His Kingdom is nothing like that of an earthly one…in fact…it is the exact opposite.  I learned that He cares first about what is in our hearts, then about everything else we tend to focus on first.  I learned that on earth He is our perfect example for any and every circumstance we find ourselves in.  He is the Lion and the Lamb…my Savior and King both the same.  I learned that in fact everyone was right…I can’t…be He can.

A few months ago I was stressed…a little frustrated…and getting tired.  Very tired.  We were (of course) driving and I was quiet.  Maxwell all of a sudden said “Mama!  Don’t worry!  Jesus is all we need!”  It was like a light bulb turned on and all that I had been learning in my head made sense in my heart.  Jesus is all I need. I can’t get myself out of bed when I wake up and feel like I’ve been hit by a truck.  But He can.  I can’t protect my children (no matter how germaphobic I am) from every icky virus they can get their hands into.  But He can.  I can’t save anyone.  But He can.  And He did!  I didn’t miss a single solitary Tuesday.  I missed only one Monday because Emalynn had a 10-minute “tummy ache” that simply went away.  No other illnesses plagued our children.  God faithfully and miraculously showed up the entire time!  He protected them from all the illnesses that went around this school year faithfully answering every prayer we said every single night.  He got me out of bed when I just knew I couldn’t do it.  He gets me through each day.  It has nothing, absolutely nothing to do with me.  It’s all about Him.

What the Lord has shown me is profound.  In gearing up for this year I kept hearing No matter what your question, I am your answer.  Now I am hearing…not you can’t…but I AM, I can!  I know that no matter what God calls me to I can’t do it on my own in my own strength…but with Him filling me with His resurrection power…He can!  No matter what giant you are facing you might be telling yourself you can’t.  And just like me, you may very well be right.  Just like me, you might crumble on your own.  But just remember…when you can’t…He can!

I can do all this through him who gives me strength.  Philippians 4:13

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