The past two months have been wonderful and horrible at the same time. I’m thrilled to have another baby in our family, and everyone loves him more than he will ever know. The older kids have welcomed him without jealousy and I’ve been so thankful for the ways they have adjusted.
But, as grateful as I am and as wonderful as it has been, life with a newborn is hard.
Sleep is minimal, routines are non-existent, breasfteeding is tiresome, figuring out a baby’s cries is exhausting, and caring for the needs of everyone else in the family at the same time will wear any person thin.
And when you’re worn thin, Satan throws the arrows of temptation at rapid rates knowing that you’re vulnerable and susceptible to fall into sin.
Ten days into Cooper’s life I realized this was happening to me. And I wasn’t shielding his darts like I should have.
Thoughtless words and harsh tones were frequent.
I was saying “I’m sorry” at least once a day. My children became all too familiar with my mascara-smeared face. “Mommy, are you okay?” they would ask. They interpreted my tears as sadness, but it was regret and shame over the way I was treating everyone.
Navigating through a challenging season of change resulted in a deep season of repentance.
This wasn’t what I had expected for my postpartum days. Exhaustion? Yes. Irritation? Sure. But I was unprepared for the way sin erupted from my heart.
In the midst of feeling pretty overwhelmed and exhausted it became necessary for me to sit down and spend a chunk of time in confession and repentance.
I’d like to think that repentance births perfection. But it doesn’t.
However, it does bring forgiveness.
We are promised forgiveness (1 John 1:9). And yet how often do I neglect to really receive it?
When I accept the forgiveness God offers, I am then able to live freely in the grace that God supplies.
Yes, I’m still going to struggle. Yes, I will still fall into sin.
But when I list out my sins to the Lord–not just the behavior, but the heart issue behind it–I can feel the weight of my sin lift. God’s grace floods my heart and I’m able to press on through the power of the Spirit as a changed person.
Changed because I’ve renewed my belief that I need the gospel everyday.
I need the gospel when life is easy. I need the gospel when life is hard. I need the gospel when I think I have it all together and when I feel like I’ve failed in a million ways.
I love these words from the old hymn Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing:
“Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it, prone to leave the God I love.
Here’s my heart, O, take and seal it, seal it for Thy courts above.”
My heart is certainly prone to wander. Sometimes it does that most when life gets messy with new changes and things get thrown out of whack.
When it does, I take my heart, give it back to the Lord in repentance, and walk confidently knowing that He will enable me to live life in His power and for His glory.