Oftentimes I choose the former because it seems so much easier. I just want to zone out, turn my mind that’s been spinning 100 miles an hour off. I look on Instagram, I turn on Netflix and tune out because I feel that’s what will relax me. Sometimes that’s fine and totally needed but if this becomes my nightly ritual, I notice myself becoming short and irritable. I need to feast on what is good and give God time to minister to my heart, feed it what it really needs, quality time with Him.
For God alone truly understands all that I’m going through. He knows my heart better than myself. And God alone knows how to comfort, encourage and build me up in the way that truly satisfies. We’re all created with a God sized hole in our heart. If we continually feed it things from this world, entertainment, busyness, friends….which are all good things but if that’s all we’re feeding our hearts, we’ll find ourselves hungry and dry. But if we intentionally setting apart time to let Him feed our hearts, we will know the peace and joy we’re searching for.
So How Do We Feed Our Heart?
Make time for His Word:
Even if it’s a one or two verses a few minutes before our kiddos wake up in the morning or during nap time, we need to feast on the Bread of Life.
Ask the Lord how much He would like for you to read, everyone’s capacity and seasons are different. Right now, I’ve only be able to handle a few short verses. But no matter how much you read, when you read, you are feasting on the bread of life. This is what our souls are hungering for. You are giving God time to wash your weary heart with His powerful truth.
Familiarizing yourself with His Word also puts His mighty weapons in your hand and helps you not only identify the lies the Enemy tries to pull you down with but also equips you to fight back.
Make time to listen:
I like to read His Word then take a few moments to listen and let those words sink in. He wants to speak to us, to encourage us, to build us up, to lead us to the path of life. He’s not a tyrant just wanting to make sure we’ve done our duty today, He wants to talk to you and encourage you. God wants to fill us up. If we don’t give Him space to do that, His Word will feel dry and we won’t want to read it. That’s why we need to allow the Holy Spirit to come and breathe upon His Word when we read.
As we continually give Him space to speak and give our ears to listen, we’ll build up our muscles to be more sensitive to His voice and begin to hear Him throughout the day.
Ask Him for what you need. Turn your worries into prayers. Tell God what you’re worried and anxious or fearful of. Invite Him into carrying the stresses of your life.
Ask Him to direct and lead your day. It’s good to set goals and make plans, but give Him space to change them if necessary. Maybe He is inviting you to a day at the park instead of reading books at the library? Maybe He wants you to go buy some donuts to share with your kids? Maybe it’s a good morning for cuddling your little one a bit longer? Ask Him to lead and to help you listen. Ask Him to help you with things that feels out of control or stressing you out. Ask Him for good mama friends, ask Him for a tribe if you feel lonely.
Do what makes your heart come alive:
I love quiet moments where I get to drink a nice cup of coffee or tea and look at the window at the trees swaying in the backyard. It helps calm my soul. Sometimes I get to do that and sometimes I don’t. When days go by without having time to do something that helps my heart come alive, I have a harder time listening to God and hearing what He has to say to me.
Make time for yourself. Communicate to your husband what you need rather than wait til you’ve already at your whit’s end. Sometimes I have to force myself to put on a facemark at night or take a long bath. It’s tempting to just sit in front of the TV and Netflix and chill. And don’t get me wrong, sometimes you just need to do that. But what I find to be true for myself is that I need some quiet alone time where I can relax and be with God. His presence beats out any other thing that seems fulfilling.
Rest in His Finished Work
I’ve always struggled with finding my worth in what I do and others’ opinion of me. If someone likes and approves of me, I feel better about myself. But the problem with this way of life is that people’s opinions are so fickle, they’re here today and gone tomorrow (Psalm 103:15-16).
If I allow man’s opinion to determine my worth and my identity, then I will be building my life on sinking sand, wavering with the changes of man’s hearts (Matthew 7:24-27). With already so much on my plate as a mom, when I allow how I do as a mom define who I am, I’m pretty tired, stressed and weary by the end of the day. But when I focus on God’s unchanging truth that helps me rest in His finished work, allow His perfect sacrifice to earn for me the right to come to God as His beloved daughter, then I have a lot more peace and joy.
I simply say to myself throughout the day: “God defines who I am” “I am loved not because of what I do, but because of Christ’s perfect sacrifice.” Allow God space to plant You on His Rock, a firm foundation, a safe place for you to be fully loved.
Give it a whirl and let me know how it goes! I’d love to hear from you.
For some more good reads, check out the following posts:
- Letting God Parent My Child & I
- 5 Things That Keep This Mom’s Heart Alive
- Our Loss & His Comfort: Walking Through Miscarriage
- Top 5 Resources to Help You Do Devotions as a Family in Chinese
Don’t Do It Alone!
For more support and to commiserate with likeminded parents, please join us at Christian Parents Raising Bilingual Children in English & Chinese.