So I wake up on Monday morning after a busy weekend….
For one thing, the string on the church piano broke in the middle of the worship service on Sunday…
I have meetings, events, appointments, and extra activities all week (adding “Call Piano Tuner” to the list)…
Then right before the bus comes, my daughter pops her foot into the sneaker and says, “Look, Mom, my shoe broke, but I can still wear it,” at which point she takes a step forward to demonstrate its viability as a workable shoe and the sneaker falls off her foot and plops to the floor….
So, I grab an extra pair, but the laces are knotted up tight….
And the school bus comes and picks up one daughter but the other one is still fiddling with the replacement shoe.
I’ve got this. I rush the preschooler through her school preparation because she is at this point still standing there in her pajamas with un-brushed teeth and messy morning hair.
Then I pop the baby in the car seat (still in his pajamas, but who would know?), and expertly drive the oldest child to one school, the four-year-old (who is now dressed with her teeth cleaned and her hair in braided pigtails) to a different school where I arrive early (for once!!!) and the baby back home without losing my temper, my cool, or my driver’s license.
Then I feel compelled to hit that to-do list all determined and focused despite the wearing down from brokenness and need.
I could cry because it is hitting a little bit on the tender part of my soul still bruised a bit from weekend wear, but it’s also hitting a little on my sense of my humor.
A broken shoe?
How does that even happen?
It’s also hitting me here, too: thinking how life can trip us up with so much that’s unexpected. You can plan and plan and make those lists and keep those agendas and then a sneaker breaks on a Monday morning and you better hope that all you have holding you together isn’t just a list you jotted down in a notebook with a blue pen.
You better hope you’re resting in Jesus.
Saturday, I was yanking mint out of my garden in patches. Years ago, I planted this tiny pot of mint and now it’s everywhere. As I pull up one sprig, a vine pops up from underneath the soil and I discover an underground network of mint, all connected and interwoven.
The depth, the connectedness, the strength is all hidden in the dirt, only revealed by the weight of my tugging.
And life, it yanks at us here or there, pulling at this little bit, trying to unravel what it sees. Yet, we are to be connected deep, even in hidden ways far beneath the surface, to the Vine.
Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing (John 15:4-5 NASB).
This ‘Abiding….” or “remaining” (as the NIV says), what does this mean for me this day, this Monday of unexpected breaking?
In The Message it reads:
“Live in me. Make your home in me just as I do in you. In the same way that a branch can’t bear grapes by itself but only by being joined to the vine, you can’t bear fruit unless you are joined with me. I am the Vine, you are the branches. When you’re joined with me and I with you, the relation intimate and organic, the harvest is sure to be abundant. Separated, you can’t produce a thing” (John 15:3-8 MSG).
Presence is everything in the Christian life…The truth is that His Presence working within us is the key to everything and without Him we can do nothing.
Why? Because all that is truly important, the obedience, overcoming trials, bearing fruit, navigating relationships and practicing spiritual disciplines changes essentially when I experience the Presence of Christ—-my attitude improves, my prayers deepen, my faith grows, my joy is renewed, passions re-kindle, service comes easy even on a broken Monday morning.
All because when hassles, bothers, broken shoes, minor annoyances and even true trials pull at me, they reveal more than some superficial root system that gives way at the slightest pressure.
They reveal the Vine.
And today, I’m holding on for dear life, but I’m still holding on.
Dear God, today it’s not chocolate or tea, a hug, kind words, or some encouragement from a friend that I need. What I need is You. I know this is true: Apart from You, I can’t do anything. Please “live in me. Make Your home in me” and in the “intimate and organic” relationship that grows, help me to thrive in You.
Do you have a crazy Monday morning story to share? Do tell!
To read more about this 12-month journey of pursuing the presence of Christ, you can follow the links below! Won’t you join me this month as I ‘Enjoy Beauty’?
- Finding Room to Breathe: A 12-month pursuit of the presence of Christ
- January: Be Still and Know
- February: Pray Simply
- March: Unplug
- April: Enjoy Beauty
Heather King is a wife, mom, Bible Study teacher, writer and worship leader. Most importantly, she is a Christ follower with a desire to help others apply the Bible to everyday life with all its mess, noise, and busyness. Her book, Ask Me Anything, Lord: Opening Our Hearts to God’s Questions, is available now! To read more devotionals by Heather King, click here.
Copyright © 2014 Heather King