A Lifestyle of Prayer

This piece originally appeared on Everyday Exiles.

I recently got a list of questions on self-care (Buzz word!) from a counselor to journal my way through, to help gauge my “level of health” in several areas.

WOW, it was tough.

But one of the most interesting ones was “Is prayer your lifeline and lifestyle?” I had to really ponder this one. Lifestyle was an easy image to conjure; a lifestyle of prayer must be what Paul means when he says in 1 Thessalonians to “pray without ceasing”. A lifestyle of prayer to me suggests a closeness with God at all times, a reaching out as the first idea, not after a few other ideas have fallen short. But “lifeline” to me felt like a throwback to that show “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?” The contestant used a “lifeline” when they didn’t know the answer to one of the questions. It wasn’t the first thing they did, and it often took two or all three of their lifelines to get an answer they felt confident about keeping for their own. Using prayer as my “lifeline” seems more like a last resort or a second thought than a first reaction.

I’ve been thinking a lot recently about making prayer my lifestyle, and how difficult that can prove to be when I have so many things (ie: children) vying for my attention and just plain making noise when I’m trying to have “quiet time”. (Why does it have to be quiet, anyway?) I’m reading a book called Glimpses of Grace by Gloria Furman with a group of friends, and she says early on in the book that we shouldn’t be deterred from our time with the Lord because we’re busy with little children or chores or anything else, but rather that we should submit all of those times to the Lord, just as we would submit our “quiet time” to Him. I literally wrote in the margin of the book “Don’t make ‘silence’ or ‘quiet time’ an idol.”

How lovely would it be if I had hours to set aside each day for worship, studying the Scriptures, prayer, and journaling?! That would be a dream, but it just isn’t possible in my life as a mom of young children who also works part time. I’m guessing it’s not possible for many, or even most, of us with our busy lives in 2018. Monks in monasteries may have time for quiet hours set aside for Jesus, but my time with Jesus usually looks a lot more like worship music while I scramble eggs, and praying over booboos and sibling skirmishes. Is that my ideal? No, not always. But will these years of tiny people needing me but unfortunately short and certainly missed? Yes. So I’ll continue to pray for sibling altercations, and for patience in the midst of sleep deprivation and unwashed hair. If you’re in the trenches, Jesus will still meet you there.

Things Toddlers Say

Happy Tuesday, y’all! Enjoy these funnies!!

J: I love chocolate chip cookies with all of my heart.

D: This dog bite my arm like I bite J!

EK: Scottie one time saw a spider that was bigger or as big as her HAND!
J: You’re making me think it was as big as my BUTT!

EK: When Jesus takes us to heaven, it’ll be like we’re going on a long trip to Georgia.
J: Or Disney world!

D: Mom, I got quack-quack toots!

D: I gonna keeyull you!
Me: *gasp* No, D, you can’t say that!
D, interrupting me: I gonna keeyull dis bug!

Hubby: Do you guys want Biscuitville or Chick-fil-A?
EK: I want Chick-fil-A! Those baby chicken nugget sandwiches where the biscuits are tiny and have honey!
Me: Those are yeast rolls but okay. *dies laughing*

J: When you toot, that’s when you need to poop… soon.

D, defending himself: But I don’t want to be at trouble!

There you have it – another weekly installment of sillies from my kids. What silly things do your kids say?

Things Toddlers Say

Happy Tuesday, friends! It’s been a great week over at our house getting back into a little bit of normal, with a splash of Vacation Bible School, and EK going to FARM CAMP this week! So fun! Here are a few goodies for your enjoyment. Hope you laugh like I did!

Playing a game…
J: I’m on D’s team.
EK: There aren’t teams!
J: Yeah, there’s no such thing as friends.
Me: …..?

J, jumping from my headboard to my mattress: Canyonball!

EK, singing at VBS: This is better than Disney!

J, speaking truth: It is dumb hot out here.

D, wakes up from a nap super hard.
Me: Good morning!
D: ….yeah….

J, dressed in a winter coat and dragon wings: Feast your eyes on this!

D, pointing to the backyard: I saw a sheep, mom! Like a ghost!

EK, witnessing a glitter spill at VBS: This is wonderful!

D, praying at dinner: Dear God, thank you for dis family, for EK and J and mama and daddy and in God’s names, amen!
Me: *all the heart eyes*

EK, after attending one day of farm camp: Mom! Can we please, please, please make a farm?!?! I mean, we have the space for it….

Me, talking about something random: …a stupid lot. (Like, a lot a lot)
J: Why’d you say “stupid”?! You’re gonna go to jail!

Well, what are the funny things your kids have said recently? Let me know in the comments!