With a newborn, my time to post at Enjoying the Surface has greatly diminished. Yet, caring for my daughter Ellie (pictured, left) continues to be a place where the Lord reminds me of His great love for us—for me, for her, for my wife, and for you.
I’m a doer. Rarely a day goes by where there is not a list, mental or written, of things to do, accomplish and succeed. And with each task completed comes an inner joy of satisfaction, of accomplishment. Ellie’s arrival is obliterating all of that, as the learning curve for me here is that it’s no longer about what I need to do, but the task at hand is to meet her needs in their full spectrum.
Understandably, this has caused some inner turmoil. The tasks of life—work, cleaning, shopping, interactions with others, service—must get done at some point. But at what cost? The negligence of care of my daughter is not worth the price. Yet that is where the temptation lies when task-man meets people-man.
Some weeks ago, in between the exhaustion and piled-up tasks, frustration entered in. Why couldn’t I get the things done that I’d typically got done over the many past years? And the Lord reminded me of Psalm 121. Holding Ellie in my arms one evening, I began to doze off yet still wanted to savor the moment with her. Exhaustion. Frustration. Anxiety over the things still to do in the late hours of the evening. And there it was. I was reminded of a passage in the Psalms I’d read so many times before and it now had a much more clear meaning. “I look up to the mountains; does my strength come from mountains? No, my strength comes from God, who made heaven, and earth, and mountains. He will not allow your foot to be moved; He who keeps you will not slumber. Yes, He who keeps Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.”
My strength comes from my Keeper. The one who made the mountains. And my daughter. And me. He does not slumber nor sleep. On His watch, which is all the time, God doesn’t fall asleep. As I bounced up and down and walked our hallway to lull my baby to sleep, the Lord reminded me of my day that day—the frustration of not getting the things done that I’d hoped to. He showed me the difference between He and I—I with my task list and He with His desire to be with me. In fact, His agenda is to hang out with me. Just that. There’s nothing else.
There was an invitation that evening for me that I think is for all of us—to remember firstly that I do not keep myself. He keeps me. And in my reliance on His keeping, I can enter into the life He has for me, for us. This God who does not slumber or sleep, who wants to hear our cries out to Him, cries of joy and of frustration and of laughter, wants us to let go and enjoy the things He has for us, to hang out with those He puts in my path, in your paths.
May each of us remember Him and let go of those things to which we cling so dearly as we go throughout our day and instead embrace the God who does not slumber nor sleep.