Five years ago this week, Ryan and I doubled down. Our twins were born on 11-1-11. It wasn’t exactly a gamble on our part, but there was plenty of uncertainty to go around. We had no idea what to expect.
To be honest, if God had approached me before I got pregnant (which He didn’t) and offered me twins, I’m quite sure I would have said, “Oh, wow, that’s so nice of you to offer.” (Gotta be polite, right?!) “But I’m much more comfortable with the idea of three children. We don’t want to have four…never even considered the possibility. So, thanks, God, but no thanks.” To think that in my desire to stick in our comfort zone, I would have actually passed up such an amazing blessing. The real gamble is when we don’t put our trust in God’s plans.
But, still, uncertainty is very uncomfortable isn’t it?!
Being up in the middle of the night with two babies who didn’t sleep at the same time was uncomfortable. Doubling down definitely more than doubled the chaos and tears around our house. I couldn’t have imagined the messes, the exhaustion, or my ability to hit peaks of anger I had never seen in myself before. (And of course, I couldn’t have grasped the joys that lay ahead either.)
Most days, life feels just outside of my control. And that is just the way God wants it to be. Instead of mastering our lives and our days, God asks us to submit to the One and Only Master. EVERY day, I lose my patience. I struggle with yelling at my children. To put it simply, my kids often drive me batshit crazy (sorry).
I am not in control. I misplace my priorities regularly. I make mistakes every day. Get this…yesterday I washed two mini iPads in the washing machine with the laundry. I kid you not. I cried. Does that sound like a mother who has everything under control?
Control is really just an illusion. For me, control is even an idol. I’m learning, very slowly, that lack of control and a bit of uncertainty in our lives is not bad.
“Our natural inclination is to be so precise– trying always to forecast accurately what will happen next– that we look upon uncertainty as a bad thing.” Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest (April 29)
Chambers goes on to explain that the nature of a healthy spiritual life is to be “certain in our uncertainty.” Despite the fact that we are uncertain of what tomorrow may bring, we have peace in our “gracious uncertainty” because we are certain of our God.
If faith is having confidence in what we cannot see, then we must double down in the face of uncertainty. I love how Stefani Gretzinger sings in “Out of Hiding” of God’s promise to be our “lighthouse when we are at sea.” When we lean hard into this faithful God, His love beyond measure brings comfort that no amount of certainty will ever bring.
There will continue to be uncertainty ahead. There will be many dark days in all of our lives. There will be days where any sense of control has simply gone out the window.
Again, I am encouraged by music. Chris Tomlin sings of our “Good Good Father” and reminds us that our God knows what we need before we say a word. He is perfect in all of His ways. And on those hardest of days, I pray that I will listen for His tender whisper and rest in knowing that I am loved by Him. It’s who I am.
Certainty, uncertainty, control, lack of control–and the idols come tumbling down. Well said!
“In fact, God, I’m so comfortable with three kids that I already have stockings for them. How do you propose I find a fourth matching stocking, Lord?”
Sorry about the iPads, I would have cried too (I cried about the bleach on the carpet for about an hour, no surprises there.). Control is definitely an idol for me too. Thanks for the reminder.
Haha…please don’t ever let me forget about that. It hadn’t crossed my mind in a long time. Love you, friend.
This is wonderful as always from your control freak Mother-in-law! And oh the JOY these twins have been right in there with all the challenging times!! We have a mentors panel on parenting for our next Mentoring Moms group and I think I will just read this blog to them so filled with wisdom!! Thanks for sharing and always pointing us back to God – the One with the perfect plan.
As always, thanks for your sweet support, love and encouragement like this with my writing!
Lauren, I love how vulnerable and honest you are – about yourself, and about God! May we all stay centered in Him – even in the uncertainty. Wonderful writing, and thanks for sharing! xo
I’m replying better than never…thank you for your encouragement:-) Thanks for being a ‘centering’ force in my life!