February 13, 2012

Supply and Demand (For The Weary)

I am a mom to three boys, ages 8, 6, and 4.

Aside from my persistent battle with poorly-aimed pee in the bathroom and their constant running (mostly into each other), wrestling, light saber fights, and laying on top of one another (preferably naked), the major distinction of mothering boys is supplying their ravenous bellies with food.
All day long, it seems, I am pestered for food and/or drink. Just after a meal is completed, but just before I am finished cleaning up in the kitchen, there is a boy at my side asking for a snack (or a complete second meal). I dream of installing a Jetson-like machine in my kitchen that dispenses a fully-cooked meal with one press of a button. At some point, in between making the second sandwich and tearing off the third banana from the bunch, I put my foot down: "Kitchen's closed! For the sake of us all, I must ration the food for the rest of the week! Come back at breakfast!" I'm like a circus lion tamer trapped in a cage with hungry, prowling animals, fending them off with a kitchen stool.

With boys and food, it is constant demand, but limited supply.

But it's not just with boys and it's not just with food. Is there any area of life not characterized by constant demand and limited supply? Parenting, ministry, housework, marriage, work, relationships--these demand our attention, time, effort, patience, love, persistence, and commitment. In the end, however, we can only give so much. According to our human limits, as we give out to others, our supplies must be replenished. If they are not replenished we become like a lion tamer fending off weariness, discouragement, dryness, or emptiness. Or perhaps anger, bitterness, or feelings of being unloved or alone.

Where can we replenish our supplies so that we might give to others? Where do we turn when so much is demanded of us, yet so little is given in return? Who will care for us?

The Lord, who never grows weary of demands, never needs a break, never sleeps, never takes time off, will.
The Lord, whose love, grace, mercy, and patience are endless, will.
The Lord, on whom we can cast all of our cares, will.
The Lord, who is an endless supply on whom we can ravenously feast, will.
The Lord, who never leaves us to fend for ourselves, will.

This is how we thrive. We go to the Source, tell Him our needs, fill up on Him, let Him live in us, and then rise up to meet the demands of life.

He never says, "Kitchen's closed. Come back tomorrow", for His supply is unlimited and freely, joyfully given.

Now if He could only help my boys with their aim.