Enjoying the Blessings of Today
Guest Post by Amy
It seems that I have learned so much about myself and my walk with God since becoming a mom!
One day I was watching my son, Joshua, eat some crackers. (He absolutely loves crackers!) When he started eating the ones that I gave him, I noticed that he wasn’t even really enjoying them. He was shoving them in his mouth as quick as he could so he could get more!
When he got more, he still had his eyes on the ones that he didn’t have while he was eating the ones in front of him. He wasn’t able to enjoy what he was already given, because he was too busy looking forward to what he was going to eat next.
I sat there thinking about how silly he was being, and then it dawned on me that I often do the same thing! I don’t necessarily do this with food, but I do this with every day activities and with life in general. God showed me the other day that I am often too busy or pre-occupied to enjoy what’s going on in the moment.
It’s easy for me to get lost in laundry, dishes and the day-to-day routine of life. I often find myself “dreaming” about the days when my children are bigger, and I’ll have a little more time to pursue some of the dreams that are in my heart.
For example, I hope to someday write a devotional. Right now I have my blog that I update 1-2 times a week. That’s all I seem to be able to do without letting my responsibilities as a wife and mother slide.
It seems as though there are a lot of women out there who are able to pack in so many activities during the day and still stay on track. I don’t seem to be one of those women! No matter how much I try, I don’t seem to be able to juggle many “extra” things before God taps me on the shoulder to point out that my priorities are out of balance again.
Consequently, I often find myself dreaming about the day when I’m able to spend more time doing what I’m unable to find time for now. I know that there’s nothing wrong with thinking about my future, but I often find myself unable to enjoy what’s going on now, because I’m wishing for the future to come. If I’m not careful, I can sometimes find resentment building up in my heart when I start to feel like I’m the only one whose dreams are being put on hold. (Ouch! That sounds terrible, I know!)
Image by Pink Sherbet Photography
Focusing on the Present, Not the Future
God has been gently reminding me that I sometimes neglect to enjoy the blessings that He has already placed in my life! The future will come, but I don’t want to get there and realize that I didn’t enjoy one of the most important parts…raising my children!
I love my children, and I consider them wonderful gifts from God! My son will be 4 in just a couple of weeks, and my daughter is almost 9 months old! Yes, my family has many challenging days along with all of the good ones, but I’ve been praying that God shows me how to enjoy my life and family no matter what kind of day we’re having.
I tend to be such a planner that I often think more about the future than the present. I’m starting to make a point to step back and watch my children play. I’m purposefully paying more attention to the little things that make my children unique.
For example, my son and I were in a department store the other day, and I found him dancing to the music playing over the store intercom! The people around us were smiling and chuckling a little. The more they stared, the more he danced! Normally, I would have let that moment pass by while I was thinking about all of the things I needed to get done before we went home. Instead, I stopped to admire the cute little entertainer that God has given me.
I am learning to take my frustrations, worries, fears, anger, and overwhelmed feelings to God on a regular basis so I can be a better wife and mother. I thank God for showing me how to pay attention and recognize the blessings that I have each and every day – even if it’s hidden in the “routine” of daily life!
Are you enjoying and purposefully noticing the “little things” that encompass the season of life you’re in today?
Amy and her husband of 6 years live in PA with their 3-year-old son and 8-month-old daughter. She has a growing passion to help women discover who they are in Christ and find freedom in becoming who God has created them to be. While growing up, Amy thought Christianity was all about following impossible rules and looking like she had it all together on Sunday mornings. She has since realized that following Jesus is all about her relationship with Him, not trying to be perfect or putting on an “act” around everyone else. In her blog, “My Purpose In Him”, Amy shares her journey in becoming the wife, mother, and follower of Jesus that she is created to be.
Thank you. This really spoke to me. I am currently a single woman and i keep waiting to enjoy life ‘once i am married,’ consequently i am missing out on today. I will be printing this post to re read.
Blessings (from Australia)
@Laura, I used to do that (now I am married). Then sometimes, ironically, I think back and think “if only I was single again”…and when I was married without kids, I wanted them, and then now I have them, I want more…
Its really hard to be content where we are at and not wish for what we used to have or wish for something we don’t have. I once read something about a woman that got to the end of her life and felt that her whole life she had just wanted the next thing…and got to the end of her life and realized she wasted it all. A sad thought. I encourage you to enjoy the singleness that is just as much a blessing from God as marriage.
@Laura, I did the exact same thing. But then one day I came upon this book, called “Lady in Waiting” I wish I could remember the author, but it is a red, black and white book. It is a very encouraging book for the single time in your life, it puts in perspective how we can truly be an encouragement and service to others when we aren’t married. It really helped me during that “Will I ever meet someone?” time, and as the other commentor said, enjoy it, because sometimes you will think back on it and wish you could go back for a little while.
@Natalie, I just looked up that book, and if it’s the same one you’re referring to, it’s by Jackie Kendall. It looks like a great book!
Oh wow! I just had most of these same thoughts yesterday. I was watching my little one paint a picture for a family member that we will be visiting this weekend. I suddenly realized that I was thinking so much of the weekend that I was missing the beauty right in front of me. My daughter’s sweet face as she worked so hard on her picture! It was then that I realized that my love of scrapbooking can really help me to enjoy the today and everyday moments even more. So I took out my camera and took some pictures of her sweet face. I was realizing at that moment that I had stopped taking out my camera just for the every day stuff. I pray I can keep this up and remember to enjoy the gifts He gives me today! Thanks!
@Hope, I have just started scrapbooking, also! I cherish those pictures now, and I can only imagine how precious they will be to me when my children are grown!
Thank you for that! I think there are many times when I need to slow down and enjoy by girls more. I spend too much time comparing myself to others and not enough time just enjoying who I am and what God has already given me. I needed that encouragement and reminder.
Thanks, Ladies! I actually needed to hear it myself! It has been a little while since I wrote that post; but when I read it again this morning, I realized that it’s something I need to continually remind myself of!
What a wonderful post! It is so easy to get priorities askew. 🙁 Needed this today. Thank you for sharing…
Oh I totally agree. This is probably one of my biggest struggles. I let my “to do list” get in the way. Its really awful. I read a post, I think on Simple Mom, about being task oriented or people oriented…ummm I am really very task oriented. I look back over my oldest’s 4 years and realize it went SO fast I need to take more time with her. On the post I mentioned it had a list of tips for task oriented people, and seriously it spoke to me when it said to put spending time with family on the to-do list. It might sound bad, but if you’re task oriented, I think you might just understand. 🙂
Yesterday morning as I was laying in bed saying my prayers and then just reflecting for a moment before the little fellas in my life came busting in to cover me and my husband with wet kisses, I was thinking about just this. So often I am “planning” what is to come next when in all honesty I am missing the “now”.
I tend to do this A LOT about our financial future and when we can move into a better neighborhood and a larger home. We live in a nice/safe neighborhood now and have a lovely home that continues to meet all our needs, just not in the way I would like them met 😉
I realized the other morning that not only was I enjoying our house that we live in right now, but I was not showing God nor my husband how appreciative I am that God has given us the means and a husband who works very hard to make our life comfortable and nice.
I also realized that my attitude has a direct effect on how my husband sees our home as well as our children. And I want them to see our house as so much more then just 4 walls. I want them to remember living in a HOME.
@Beth, Beth, I know exactly what you mean about your attitude affecting the rest of your family’s attitude! I have noticed that when I’m content, the rest of my family seems to fall in line with that. When I’m not content and feeling overwhelmed, it spreads quickly throughout the house! Thanks for the comment. I’m glad you liked the post!
Great post! Thanks for sharing. It reinforced what God has been speaking to my heart.
@Kari, That’s awesome, Kari!
I love that you learned a lesson through your child. How true your words are. I struggle with enjoying the present moments as my mind races ahead. I tend to be a planner too.
I loved the story you shared about your little son dancing to the music. Oh if only we could learn to dance through it all …the storms, the good times and the stressful.
Oh and I can tell you that there are seasons in life. Right now your important ministry is in your home. But they grow up quickly and life changes in time.
Blessings and love,
Thanks for writing this! I am constantly “thinking ahead” of all the things on my to-do list and often struggle to live in the moment. Great post.
Wow, this post has really spoken to me! I have been having these “wishing for the future” thoughts for a while now, but for different reasons. My husband is in the Navy and is gone on 7 month deployments about every 8 months or so. Needless to say, our family time is extremely priceless to us. All of this separation time has made me wish for the future when he is no longer in the military so we can have a “normal” life. God has used your post to remind me to live in the moment and appreciate and enjoy what time we do have together as a family and not wish it away for the future. It seems like in every season of my life, i.e., singleness, newly married, and now parenthood, I have desired the next thing, but that is so contrary to what God would have me focusing on. I thank you, Amy, for bringing that to the forefront of my mind once again.
@Amanda in FL, Thank you for the lovely comment, Amanda! I can’t imagine how difficult it must be to have a husband who is so far away. Isn’t it great that we have a loving, sustaining God to supply all of our needs? I’m glad that God used my post to bless you. 🙂
You are correct, kids are absolutely a gift from god. As a dad I have seen and enjoyed my kids from a different point of view than yourself, but the concept is the same. My kids are adults now, but I would not have missed the adventure. Although we teach our kids about life, like you, I have learned meny things from watching my kids grow up. Excellent post Amy.
What a lovely reminder. I smile because today is Wednesday and a few hours ago I was thinking of all the errands I wanted to do this weekend! I pray that I can enjoy the present time, enjoy my girls, and enjoy the blessings that the Lord pours over me daily!
Thank you so much for this encouraging post! I too am one of those who can’t get my schedule too full. I tend to look at others and think:”If they can, I should be able to! What is wrong with me??” It was such refreshing and good news to know there are others out there like myself. I get too overwhelmed when I do too much and then miss out on the present! Praise God for your courage to share this so that others may be encouraged too! I don’t think I tend to look ahead in wait for the future so much, as I compare myself with others, which is so wrong to do. I will take time today to enjoy the moment and not allow the busyness to distract me! Thank you!
Peaceful in HIM.
Thank you, everyone for your wonderful, encouraging comments! And thank you, Stephanie, for giving me the opportunity to have a guest post on your blog! I praise God for helping me to be a blessing to others. Without Him, I wouldn’t even have a blog to write on! 🙂
Amy, I agree with you totally! Carpe Diem..Sieze the day! There will never be another one quite like it 🙂 Great post.
Thank you for the wonderful post. I am constantly trying to slow down to enjoy where I am on the way to where I am going. It has always been a struggle for me. Like you, I am a planner, but my plans are very seldom the same as the Lords plans for my life. Don’t get me wrong, I still plan, but I am learning to yield to Him more often than not knowing that His will is perfect and He is in control. This post spoke so much to me and how God is working on teaching me to be content where I am.