Relax, Refill, and Refocus

When I became pregnant with Sadie Rose, our first child, I started writing a journal, filled with photos of ultrasounds, notes from doctor visits, clippings from articles, and prayers for my soon-coming baby girl. I continued this journal through the first few years of her life, intending to give her this precious gift of prayers, thoughts, and wonderment when she turned 18 years old.

When I became pregnant with Dani, our second child, I knew that I had to continue this gift idea. And so, another journal began. I did well in the beginning, capturing notes and thoughts from the visits to the doctor, and recording the names of the nurses who helped deliver Dani on that special day. However, three years later, I still have not written her birth story and many milestones have gone unrecorded in her journal.

Now, our third child, Kaycee has just turned 1-year-old. And what does her journal look like? Well…I missed most of the doctor visits, and I haven’t written in her journal since she was three months old. So…there’s that.

Just another project unfinished. Another failure as a mother. And each time I look at these journals sitting on my desk, I am reminded of how far behind I am in writing, how I will never catch up, and how I should just give up now. I rationalize to myself, “I just don’t have the time. I’m too exhausted. Besides, they would rather have a home cooked meal than a stupid journal, right? When they finally turn 18, they probably won’t like these gift-journals anyways.”

But today… Today was different. Today, my husband called me home from work and ask me to care for the girls since he was feeling sick. When I arrived home he encouraged me to just spend time with them–don’t work, just relax and enjoy your time with them.



So, with “Princess Music” playing in the background (Thank You Disney Channel on Pandora), the girls and I sat at the dining room table to paint.

For two hours they painted… and me… well, in this relaxing moment I grabbed Kaycee’s journal and began to write! I cut, I glued, I stickered, and I wrote precious memories.

Now, in this late afternoon, as all three nap, I breath in the day, the relaxation, and embrace the refill from the Lord and His sweet treats. A glass of almond milk. A Cadburry Crunchie bar. And a good book (wink wink Lysa TerKeurst) and my Bible. This is just what I needed.

We all fall short and must rely on God. Becoming frustrated and mad will completely drain us and make us feel defeated. Turning our circumstances over to God will right our heart, change the way we look at the situation, and help us recognize glimpses of God in the midst of our broken efforts.
– Lysa TerKeurst, Am I Messing Up My Kids?

The fact of the matter is, I am not a failure as a mother. Sure, I have dishes piling in the sink, laundry left unfolded, dust collecting on the dressers and bookshelves, and Lord know’s my kitchen floor needs a major mopping. And, let’s not forget that I am months and years behind in my journalling and scrapbooking for my children.

But, I am not a failure.

I just need a little refill every so often.

And my refill comes from Christ alone.

The best kind of refreshment is found when we go to the Lord and ask Him to fill us.
– Lysa TerKeurst, Am I Messing Up My Kids?

And so, in this day of relaxation–thank you hubby!–I can be refilled by the sweetness of the Lord, and refocus my attention not on the unfinished tasks or failed projects, but rather on the blessed gifts of my children, my home, a comfy rocking chair, a simple candy bar, a pen and my journal and all that I too often take for granted. Amen. Amen.

Taste and see that the Lord is good. Psalm 34:8

4 thoughts on “Relax, Refill, and Refocus

  1. Beautiful post, Mary! So important to remember to slow down and enjoy these precious moments – they are going way too fast!
    Much love, Jennifer, Proverbs 31 OBS Volunteer

  2. I too have Journals and I too, just like you would love to pass them over when they turn 18. Sadly…I have to say that I too don’t have them completed. The ultrasound pix etc…are nit stuck in either. I still wanna write some letters too but they fall the back burner whilst everything else takes over…the never ending to do’s. So in tune with your post and I need the refill…for myself. Glad you made time and did some catching up. You have motivated me…my almond milk needs to get made as well 😉 much blessings…and know you are not alone!

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