What is this elusive, invisible time line lurking days away, where all of the sudden I will be different than before the stroke of midnight?
If time is of the essence, why am I marginally out of time?
Very little makes sense in my world.
While trying to make dinner I was unable to locate a two-pound block of cheese. I asked the residents of my household “where’s the cheddar?” and one answered, “On the staircase.”
There is gum in the foster baby’s hair, she doesn’t have teeth.
The newly engaged-baby is texting me pictures of bridesmaid dresses all with the caption: I want them to have something they can wear again.
The newly enlisted-baby is texting me things we must do before he leaves for boot camp. I refrain from texting back… Please, don’t go.
The freshman college-baby is texting me lists of stuff we must purchase before school starts. I am wholly committed to buying 8 cases of Ramen, shower shoes, and athlete’s foot spray within the next two weeks. I know. It is on my list. He has my word, I will purchase these things. Nothing but death and/or dismemberment will interfere with his noodles consumption and itchy feet this semester.
Still, he persists in asking when we will acquire the items.
We just sang “It’s not your birthday” to the two-year-old for the 5th time today… because he can’t eat unless we sing that song. I am left to wonder; when it is his birthday will he eat if the words of the song change? Also, the 5-year-old is mad because today really is his birthday and he is offended that we sang “it’s not your birthday” to the 2-year-old on his special day. Actually, this seems like a somewhat reasonable offense.
And how is it my tween daughter can hate me every month because she wants bangs? I don’t care if she gets bangs… for all I care, she can shave her head. Yet once a month this is my fault and the core reason I am “literally the worst… ever.”
It is for these reasons I fail every year at my New Year’s Resolutions.
If it were just me, my odds might increase slightly. But the reality is that clean eating goals and a commitment to daily spin classes are void the minute someone other than myself loses their pants, homework, lunch, gets arrested, or regrets getting bangs.
Someone else’s bowel habits, theater practice, piano recital, or menstrual cycle directly impacts commitments I fully intended on making good… this year.
Of course, I want to lose a few… er, uh a lot of pounds. And yes, I feel better when I exercise regularly, however; I also love being a mom.
In a perfect world, the cheese can be found in the deli drawer in my fridge, bride’s maid dresses would be both functional and lovely and bangs wouldn’t initiate a spectacle like one might observe on a telenovela.
But life isn’t perfect.
And the stroke of midnight fairy-tale only sets me up to believe I am a failure.
What a shame, I have fallen for this lie time and again. I have belittled myself and cried in my car eating fried cheese sticks and cherry slushes with Nerds candy from Sonic. People think that it is ridiculous to put candy in slushes, but I tell you, it is good.
The charade is further disguised as I brush my teeth in the Walgreens parking lot with a bottle of water and a ninety-nine cent toothbrush. I rinse and spit red-dye 40 out of the mouth of another broken spoken word. Another year I don’t accomplish the perfection I set out to perfect.
But friend, this year I approach the date change in my check book with a new fervor. This year… everything is different. And no, I haven’t figured out how to make seven lives, well eight if you count my dear husband, behave so perfectly that all my objectives will be attained.
This year I am committed to a new truth, one that had eluded me. Every year my list of resolutions included work heavy attempts to please God in the hopes I would finally find favor with Him. I am only just learning, I walk in His favor already. I can set lofty goals, to be up at 5 a.m. for quiet time with Him – granted I love to do this. But the first stomach bug, teething foster-love, or teen out past curfew throws a wrench in that goal.
While I have counted this among my failures, the Great I am has not counted it… nor has He discounted it. Why you ask?
He lost count on Calvary.
The clock will strike twelve and I will cross out 2016 on checks and permission slips well into March. Yet, the Alpha and Omega doesn’t measure me by anything but the blood of His son whose name was Righteous.
From the time I first believed until the last time that big ball drops in Times Square He has counted nothing against me.
The perfection I seek with every passing year was gifted to me and I have ignored it. I have accurately embraced the concept that my works make me different, in spite of the evidence that my works are dead; a preposterous pursuit of justification which was purchased solely by my faith.
I may or may not wake every single morning at 5 a.m.
I most certainly will cry in my car… sometimes I will cry out to my Lord. Other times I will cry out to Him and give thanksgiving for my slushy. Still I am not defeated. No, sin was defeated once and for all.
The Blood worked.
Grace is the consequence.
Eternity is the prize.
Bring it on 2017… wait till they get a load of the brand new me.
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast. Ephesians 2:8-9
May your floors be sticky and your calling ordained. Love, Jami
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