Wednesday night. 6:30 pm. The room was just a tad chaotic. Ok, more than a tad, but that’s what happens when 29 very busy women gather on a Wednesday night for Bible study in a room clearly designed for considerably fewer people. At least 25 of the 29 are all talking at once. They are seeing dearly loved friends (even if they just saw them a few hours ago at school), and there is much to tell…always! In the midst of all that, we’re bringing in extra chairs and rearranging furniture. I’m attempting to collect money for the cutest Wildly Blessed t-shirts that we’ll be sporting soon. There is also a directory list floating around the room, and I’m trying to make sure we don’t miss anyone. Plus, we’re gathering baby gifts to welcome the precious little one whose mommy is in our group.
I’d like to say this is atypical, but it’s really quite normal. As the chaos dies down, I take a deep breath and look around the room. I love these girlfriends with all of my heart, even the ones I just met for the first time. I love them because they’re there. These women are some of the busy people I know. They all work – whether at home or somewhere else. They chauffeur their children a million places – piano, soccer, gymnastics, football practice, volleyball, you name it – just since 3:30pm. They are the best cheerleaders at every sporting event, even when they might not have a child playing. They are the first to give a hug and a big smile. They are generous beyond measure even when their pocketbooks might be tight. They call and text and email to support one another. They are dedicated prayer warriors for each other and for people they don’t even know. Their day might start way before dawn and won’t finish until close to midnight, but they make a deliberate choice to be present for Bible study even when their schedules are demanding and near impossible – when there’s laundry to be done, dishes to be washed, pets to be fed, homework to be checked, trash to be taken out, and more. When I look closely at their faces (and I know when they look at mine!), I can tell they’re a little tired. And then I remind myself. It’s just the 2nd week of school. Where is that rested feeling we had just three weeks ago when we were still in summer mode? Lord, give us strength.
When I got home late last night, I couldn’t quit thinking about being a busy mom – the kind of mom every one of the precious women in my Bible study group are. I thought back to a conversation I had while sitting in the stands at Pirate Field with Logan. Boy, does that sound strange?! Logan was supposed to be on the field playing, not sitting in the stands with me. But his days were over. It was the football season after he had graduated from Crawford, and he came home proudly wearing his A&M t-shirt to watch the Pirates play. It was all he could do to sit in the stands. He wanted to be out there on that field. He told me, “Mom, I’d give anything in the world if I could suit up one more time and play again. Even just one game.” At the time, he had long hair, which was a very sore subject with his daddy, so I asked him, “Would you even cut your hair?” He said, “I’d shave it bald!” Funny thing was, I would’ve, too. I would’ve shaved every last hair off my head to just see him out there one more time.
I still feel the exact same way today. And, the good Lord knows, hair is pretty dang precious to any woman! Some of you reading this are like the girlfriends in my Bible study group and me. You’re tired. But I’d bet money on this – you’re exhausted for ALL the right reasons. You’re tired because you’re busy being the best wife, the best mommy, the best daughter, the best friend . . . and most importantly, the best child of God you can be. You give and give and give and give. And, you know what? It makes a difference. Logan wrote me a letter several months ago, and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read it. He signed the letter, “Love you the purplest, Logan”. Now that may not make sense to many of you, but it touched my heart to the very core. Tears poured down my face when I read it, and they still do every time I read it again. You see, that saying came from a book I read to Logan at bedtime when he was a little boy . . . when my day had started way before his, when dishes were still in the sink, when clothes waited in the dryer, when I was so tired I could barely keep my head up, when I thought I couldn’t squeeze one more thing in my day. It mattered. He remembered.
There are no “do overs” in life and knowing I’m weak and human and unable to do it all on my own strength, I’m counting on God’s promise in Isaiah 46:4, “I am He who will sustain you. I have made you, and I will carry you.”
Love you the purplest,