The service was almost finished, and there was a beautiful moment. Right after communion, the choir was harmonizing perfectly, the instrumentation spot on. I was really getting into it and lifting my heart to praise my creator. I closed my eyes and sang along, but my mind would not let me get too far.
My ears were tuned to pick up what my children were doing: Could they be laying down? Were they kneeling or looking for gum under the pew? Were they picking their noses and wiping it on the pew in front of them? (This one actually did occur today!) I got this image of a hot air balloon taking to the sky, only to be jerked back and held down by a rope tethered to the ground. That was my heart.
I am sure all Christian mothers can relate to this. I remember reading that Susanna Wesley, having 19 children would pray in her kitchen, pulling her apron over her head for "privacy".
I can not ever seem to get time alone to go quietly pray. I am instead praying moment by moment, "Please, God, help me be patient", "Lord, I thank you for this day. Help me use my time well", "Help me be a good mother", etc. I sometimes think that this isn't good enough for God, that I am somehow ripping myself or God off. However, he is the one that gave me the children, so he knows where I am needed. Maybe I need an apron.
I am so blessed by my children, and am glad that my heart is connected to them, with strings that bind us together.
Not restrictions, not tethers. Heart strings.