This was it. This was supposed to be the first week of the new year where I was going to get lots of things done. I made my to-do list on Monday while I enjoyed the Martin Luther King holiday with my girls. I was going to have four days to get into a new routine. My to-do list included a new writing schedule, some freelance projects, errands, cleaning out some areas of my house that haven't seen the light of day in a while and even a little time for me. Today, not even halfway through the week, my to-do list lies in figurative tatters.
Instead of running errands, we have run to the doctor. Instead of cleaning my house, it looks like I'll be cleaning my driveway of a half-foot of snow in the morning. Instead of having kids in school, I have a sick one at home and will probably have both at home for a snow day tomorrow and maybe Friday. Instead of writing and working, I've spent my days cuddling, watching movies and reading to my sick daughter.
None of the things I've done this week are bad. They're just not what I had in mind. God has spent the week rearranging my priorities. While the things on my to-do list were good, the things I've spent my week doing are more important. It won't be too many years from now that there won't be sick kids in my house. In about 10 years, it can snow 10 feet, and a snow day won't affect my life much.
But, today, those things do affect me. And when my schedule and plans get interrupted, I can get frustrated. I see the things I need to do piling up, but they aren't getting done. But then I'm reminded that my girls need to know that when they need me, I'm available. They need to know that when the chips are down mom and dad are going to be there to love them.
Because that's how God loves us, and the best way to for our kids to grasp God's love is for us to be an example of that love for them. God says in Jeremiah 31:3 "I have loved you with an everlasting love." Our kids need us to love them like God loves us with an unconditional, everlasting love. Being there when they need us is part of that.
So, the next time your child needs you to rearrange your schedule because they're sick. Or your son or daughter comes home from school and needs you to stop what you're doing to listen to a problem they're having at school. Or maybe your child simply needs some of your undivided attention. Set aside your to-do list and be a picture of God's love to them. Be the hands and feet of God to your children so they can see God's love through you.