Way Beyond Me

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handbig.jpgAs babies we are totally dependent.

As toddlers we battle our parents for control over the things we can actually do independently.

From preschool to graduation, we fight and struggle to become more and more independent. Frankly, as parents, this is the goal. We all want to raise independent children. Adults who can make it successfully in the real world.

As adults we set up our families, households, careers, friends, etc. as we so choose. Gaining independence from our parents allows us to create life as we like it. We seek to control our world, and our success is measured by how well we handle everything we are thrown.

As a young married, my husband and I had this down. We each had a job in the career we had chosen. We were feeling productive and successful. I was happy teaching high school English, and even though some days were challenging, (have you ever encountered a freshmen boy? Yikes!) I felt pretty good about how I handled classroom management and teaching the content.

But then, I willingly gave up this career to start another one. Motherhood.

No training in the world can prepare you to be a mother. Sure, we can be trained in child development, CPR, nutrition, first aid, teaching, and house keeping, but we are never fully prepared the day that baby arrives. My husband and I still joke about the whirlwind we experienced when our first child was born. Two days after delivery, they just send you home with the baby. You receive no textbook to follow. They just send you home with one more person than you came in with. It’s weird and terrifying at the same time.

I have said it so many times. Motherhood is WAY harder than teaching. And I dealt with some tough kids. I was not prepared to deal with the demanding hours, the behavioral issues, and just the sheer amount of gross stuff you have to handle as a mom.

As I have grown in my faith, I have realized something. There is no way I can do it by myself. Motherhood is totally beyond me. It’s beyond my patience, my training, and my abilities.

I have been hearing a song on the radio lately. It’s “Way Beyond Me” by Toby Mac.. I love it!

The chorus says:

That You gave me the stars, put them out of my reach
Called me to waters a little too deep
Oh, I’ve never been so aware of my need
You keep on making me see
It’s way beyond me

This song may have well been written about being a mother. It seems daily that God makes me see that it is all way beyond me. I’m always aware of my need for Him!

In 2 Corinthians 12, Paul reveals his struggles too. He had something that he struggled with as well. He asked God to take it away three different times, but each time God said same thing. It’s the secret to being a better mom. Here it is:

“My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness” (v.9)

Did you catch it? God’s grace is all we need when we are struggling. And here’s the kicker: when we admit our weaknesses, our inabilities, our gaps, our struggles, God’s power can work best in us.

It is kind of backwards, if you think about it. But it is the secret to becoming better. Paul says it best in v. 9b-10. “So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong” (emphasis added).
And friends, if ever we needed the power of Christ to work through us, isn’t it when we are being a mother? Isn’t it when we are trying to teach and to disciple our children? Yes, friends, we are working for Christ. We are raising up children to go into the world and teach people about Him. He wants to work in us.

So what do we do? How do we get the power of Christ? We admit our weaknesses. Paul says he had many as well, so we are not alone in that. We admit our weaknesses, and we ask Jesus to work through us. We ask to be filled with His Spirit. Sometimes, if you are like me, you have to ask Him several times a day. But, I know that’s ok.

The bridge in this Toby Mac song is perfect for us to remember as moms, as women, as wives, and as friends. It simply says that “You take me to the place where I know I need You.” God wants us to be completely dependent on Him. It’s backwards again. We must be dependent on Him even though we have fought for independence our whole lives. The more mature we our in our faith, the more we understand this. He will lead us to a place where we have to rely fully on Him. We are not alone when we go with Him. He is always with us. His grace is enough.