Bedtime Routine: fresh strength

You know how you walk down the stairs and your legs feel heavy? Your brain full? You are ready to be d.o.n.e.?

I was holding back my inner screams for this bedtime routine to be over after a long, no nap for one babe day. This bedtime routine has been one hour and twenty minutes friends. 

One hour and twenty minutes.

Getting them up the stairs for bedtime is a trick in itself and often involves me carrying one or two wailing. Bath time is a peaceful, lovely time yet always is followed by pleads to please stay in the water. Potty, wash hands, diapers then brush teeth. Three boys who fight over who wants what pajamas. Grab limbs and attempt to fit them into said pajamas as they wiggle, twist and turn all while monitoring the others antics. Nebulizer for Ethan. I let them get their silly's out which means three boys break dance, somersault and wiggle. Read a book and then listen to cries for another. Give in for another book. Prayers that last a lifetime and include scratches from two weeks ago, neighbors, no more throw ups, friends at school, and Jude says, "pray for everything."  If I dare forget a detail he will remind me. Brother hugs that often turn into wrestle mania. Now we sing a song while holding them close. A moment of snuggling and resting my cheek on their warm heads as their limbs wrap around me and hold me close. Then tuck in, sign of the cross on the forehead, and some words of encouragement amongst the other brothers crying for one of 34 stuffed animals that seemed to have gone missing or the order of the blankets is ascew. More water, more songs, more stuffed animals, more reasons to stay awake and push me to the edge when I am almost on empty.

Walking down the stairs with those heavy legs and full brain I see a lego, a pair of underwear and an old piece of mail. I ignore them and hobble to the bathroom. The room where the toilet paper has been pulled so far out that it has been rerolled around the tube in a jumbled mess. Where my feet sit on a toddler stool as I tinkle. Where the soap is at the front edge of the sink, just where short people on a twelve inch stool can reach. The hand towel sits there too as the sink is stained with old remnants of soap.

My kitchen island is covered in folded clothes tonight and I have more to add yet here I am; trying to reflect, refresh and restore my soul. Where were you in my day today Jesus? Where can I be more aware of you tomorrow? Where could I have been better?

I felt him when I was holding my two year old after dinner and his head was on my shoulder and he felt little again. I felt him when we had a tickle fight and their bright eyes, pulsing with joy stared into mine with delight. I felt him when I was speaking discipline to my three year old with a calm, loving tone not anger. I felt him when I wanted bedtime to hurry and get over but he whispered gently to me to slow down and hug these fleeting moments. Push down the annoyance, search for and grab onto the love just right there for me to capture. I felt him when I read this verse:

But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint” (Isaiah 40:31)

As we reflect, refresh and restore our souls tonight by sitting down for a moment among set the chaos to meet with him - he is renewing our strength. Strength to do this routine all over again tomorrow and the next day, and the next month. Strength to walk down those stairs with heavy legs to lay our full brains on the cross. To walk down them and not faint but be renewed into a newer, stronger momma day by day. I will hold this verse close on these weary, daylight savings Monday sort of days. Let's keep running though we are weary momma. He will fill you in those moments throughout the day while you wait for bedtime.

But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint” (Isaiah 40:31)

 The Message puts it like this:

God doesn’t come and go. God lasts.
    He’s Creator of all you can see or imagine.
He doesn’t get tired out, doesn’t pause to catch his breath.
    And he knows everything, inside and out.
He energizes those who get tired,
    gives fresh strength to dropouts.
For even young people tire and drop out,
    young folk in their prime stumble and fall.
But those who wait upon God get fresh strength.
    They spread their wings and soar like eagles,
They run and don’t get tired,
    they walk and don’t lag behind.

Okay, now I have the strength to finish that laundry and hang with my sweet hubby. I may just skip the laundry though. ;)

Honestly with love,
Rach xoxo


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