Hope in Our Contradictions

Hot spring
Cold mountain air combined with a hot spring creates steam. This picture was taken at Yellowstone National Park while we were on our honeymoon.

My youngest daughter is 13 1/2 months old and has yet to sleep an entire night without waking up. At this point, there is a light at the end of the tunnel, but things were pretty touchy for a while.

For what felt like ages, her best sleep was when she slept on me. Literally, me on my back, the two of us tummy to tummy. I hated it and loved it at the same time.

At not even a week old, this girl new the best way to sleep was to hold her mommy hostage.
At not even a week old, this girl new the best way to sleep was to hold her mommy hostage.

One morning in particular, I woke up before her and drank in the snuggles. I knew that time would be short-lived and that I should enjoy the moment. But then, realizing the aches from sleeping in the same position all night, my mind wandered to a day when she would join big sister in her room and sleep in her own bed. Oh, to have my bed back. To have my room back. To be able to roll over without fear of waking the baby. I so longed for a decent night of sleep that I forgot the beauty of the little one breathing in sync with me.

And then I realized so much of my life is like that. I have good intentions, but don’t always meet them. Sometimes it seems like my life is a series of contradictions.

  • My desire is for God to be first in my life, but too often those few extra minutes of sleep win out over diving into the Word.
  • I wholeheartedly believe that I am married to the world’s greatest husband, but I never seem to be 100% satisfied with how he chooses to love me.
  • I want to speak words of life to the people around me, but feel like I’m always trying to take my foot out of my mouth.
  • I hope to get back to my pre-baby body, but happily eat a slice of cake while neglecting my exercise routine.
  • I have so many tasks and goals I wish to accomplish, but I waste those precious moments of free time aimlessly scrolling through social media.

Despite all my efforts I constantly get it wrong and mess things up. It is so good to know that my mistakes are not the end all be all. With God, these mistakes are forgotten and my slate is wiped clean. My God loves me in my mess and meets me in my needs. I am so incredibly thankful that I can lean on Him in this journey.

“I have discovered this principle of life – that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. I love God’s law with all my heart. But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Romans 7:21-25a, NLT)

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