My kids are all different with their fears.
Glory, she's an irrational fear kind of girl. Airplanes, boats, swimming? No fear.
Cats, loud voices, and green shoes? Terrifying.
Benja - he's not scared of anything. Except me walking away and a meal being served a few seconds too late.
But Elias - he's your regular old typical-fears-kind of kid.
He's scared of new people, large crowds, big bodies of water, and heights. He likes to talk through his fears and the more language he acquires, the more I love his sweet little heart and hearing about the worries that plague him.
Today we were driving over a beautiful South Carolina bridge and he told me promptly,
Elias: "I would like to go on a boat again one day, but I don't want to jump off the boat. Like Hunkle Josh or Cici (our family members who did a rope swing in front of him one day at the lake). I can go on a boat, but I'm too leetle to go swimming in the water."
my response: "Well, Elias - Glory is little and she loves to go swimming! You're really not that little! And mommy can help you in the water and you have that great bathing suit that Nonny got you with the floats in it that helps you swim! Let's try again soon."
E: "no. no. I'm too little."
me: "Hm. Well, you know - our whole life is about God helping little people do big things! For His Glory! Let's talk about it."
E: "no. no. I'm too little."
me: "Well - think of all the things God has done! He made you. He made the ocean. He gave us the great gift of His son, Jesus. He made your favorite foods and gave us your favorite songs. He gives us monies so we can take care of you. He gives us all our food. He makes us happy and He makes us brave! He can do so many big things - so I bet if we asked Him, He'd help you do a big thing like swimming - even though you feel little!
E: "Mommy. I'm not talking about God. I'm talking about ME. I'm too little."
Today I went to a bible study with my sister where I heard all this goodness about The Feast of Booths. Here's a little of what I heard.
Jews have celebrated Sukkot, The Feast of Booths since the time of the Old Testament. They take a week, and live in tents, to remember the fragile dwellings the Isrealites lived in during their 40 years in the dessert after the Exodus from Egypt. The festival is all about remembering the dessert, thanking God for all that He's done - while still begging for the Messiah to come. Each day they read Psalm 118:25, "Save us, we pray, O Lord! O Lord, we pray, give us success!". Then on the seventh day, they circle the temple seven times - crying "Hosanna!" which means "save us!".
Now of course, we are blessed by our Father with the knowledge that Jesus is our Messiah. He did come to save us - to give us redemption, to turn our hearts, and give life to our souls. He actually even made it clear at one particular Feast of Booths. In John 7, we hear that even as others were seeking to kill him, He waited till the exact right time to show just how He intended to rescue. John 7:37 says that He waited until the last day, when everyone was circling around the temple crying and screaming for a Messiah, begging "Save us!". At that time, He stood up and cried out, "If anyone thirts, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, 'Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.".
I'm just too little.
No offense God, but this is too much pressure and I'm just a mom. And not a good one at that.
And. It's getting a little stressful and hard and it hasn't really even started. None of it. I'm only a few years into parenting and it's already hard and when mothers of teenagers tell me it only gets harder, I want to puke in my mouth a little. And church planting. I'm only the wife and it's already hard. And we're not even there yet.
And marriage. Come on - it's been five years. All the big marriage studies say five years is nothing. We haven't hit our stride or our hardest year yet.
And the economy. And my jiggly arms. And apartments are too expensive in Boston. And the news on the tv. And raising teenagers. And missing friends. And sex trafficking.
And so on and so forth.
Seriously - no offense, Lord.
I'm not really talking about you. Just me. I'm so little.
I think I'll be holding my own mini-Feast of Booths next week.
We're already basically in a tent, except we'll be in the gracious and beautiful home of our family, but we're displaced none-the-less. We need to remember the dessert and being brought out. We need to cry to the Messiah for all the big things that we just cannot tackle, can't even wrap our minds around. I need to look up, and see Him - saying, "If anyone thirsts....".
I may even convince Nick to sleep in the backyard with me.
For one night at least:).