So Small and Sweet

Bethany's hands.jpg

Here we all are again. One more full day until Christmas. Company is coming. Food is getting prepped. Rooms are getting cleaned. Laundry is being done or ignored - which is perfectly fine, btw. 

At our house today, cookies and banana bread were made and socks for stocking stuffers were bought. Lots and lots of little things have been done, with lots still left to do. And I have a tendency to always question why. Why are there so many little things? Couldn't we do without the little things? What happens if we don't do the little things?

Then today, one of the little things caused me to stop and consider. We were in the middle of cutting out cookies and I leaned over my youngest to help her and I noticed how little her hands still are. Dimpled and still so babyish that I quickly grabbed my phone to snap a pic. Tears stung my eyes as I realized that those little hands will most likely not be dimpled and so small next year at this time. Her fifth birthday is sneaking up on us and childhood moves at lightening speed after that. This is the last year to make Christmas cookies with such a little one. And that's when I remembered why I always push to do the little things. It's because the little things always point me to the bigger picture.

It was a little one that came to this earth, with tiny hands and feet, to take away my sin. There was no big to-do when he showed up. In fact, everyone was pretty busy with lots of other things. Yet, quiet and small he entered into our world to do what no one else could. And it was he who reminded the disciples, with their big, important agendas, that we must all be like the little ones if we are to enter his kingdom - small, excited to be with him, and completely dependent on the Father.

And then I think of his mother, Mary, who day in and out did hundreds of little things, as all mamas do, to nurture and raise this little one into the man that would change the world. May we all be so faithful in the little things God has placed in our hands to do, trusting that he will do more with our obedience than we could ever dream. 

My little moment today reminded me that all of these little moments with my daughters are adding up to a childhood that points them to Jesus. It is in the small, quiet moments that we are most often able to demonstrate God's love to them. It is in the small ways that we help our children do the things they can't and clean up the messes they make, that we teach them of God's grace and forgiveness.

But I am so very flawed and often miss opportunities to speak humbly and quietly to my babies. I struggle with being busy and stressed. In order to see the small things, we must move slowly. Christmas time is usually everything but small and slow. It is big, flashy, expensive and moves at break-neck speed. So, I'd like to invite you sweet mamas to join me in slowing down for a moment. Even if it's just for 5 minutes, I invite you to sit quietly, forget the to do list, forget the gifts that still need to be wrapped, forget the food and the programs, and the company that may even now be headed to your house. For just a moment, be grateful for the small things that have introduced you into a life of grace and forgiveness. Think for a moment about how the gospel has shown up in your life this year as you have been caring for and nurturing your babies. Revel in the sweetness of the little things in your life that remind you of the big love of God. 

And then rejoice...

And Mary said, "My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior...for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name. And his mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation."   Luke 1:46-50

Merry Christmas, Friends!