I feel like we have turned a corner with our youngest being three. No more diapers, no more stroller– I just carry a purse around now. For the first time in 9 years, I am getting a full night of sleep every night. I feel like I’ve finally figured out a great schedule and plan for homeschooling. I’ve finally figured out my migraines and had my first migraine-free month in 4 years. I have energy and capacity returning, and we need to pray and ask God how He wants us to use it. Could this be a season to take on a broader role with our ministry?
Two days later I found out I was pregnant with our fifth child. Unexpected, joyful, and overwhelming news. We all receive news in life that stops us in our tracks: an unexpected move, a diagnosis, a hope that didn’t come to be in our timing, an injustice. Really, each of us could fill in the blank: “______ has happened, and life will not be the same again.”
A week later morning sickness settled in, and I was sharing with the Lord:
How are we going to do this? Life was a beautiful FULL—how will we be able to handle another one? How will I be able to give each child the attention I want to give? How will I manage homeschooling? How will I bear the migraines again now that I can’t take any of these medicines? How will I get through today feeling so sick and caring for four kids, much less the next two months?
In my spirit I heard the Lord say:
I am sufficient.
Over the course of the next week, I heard that same message three times in different ways. I began to meditate on 2 Corinthians 12:9-10:
“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
I have been wrestling through this passage for nine nausea-filled weeks now. In my flesh, I don’t want to be weak. I like turning the corner on a hard season and feeling strong. I like feeling like I have a handle on life am thriving in my various roles as a wife, mom and missionary. But according to these verses, in order for His power to be made perfect in me, I have to have weakness.
I have been deliberating: Do I really desire to be dependent on the Lord? Will I gladly embrace weakness so that His power may rest on me? Will I choose to be content with weaknesses, and even boast of them, so that Christ may be made known through my life?
Friends, I am asking God to help me answer “yes” to these questions. I am asking Him to shift my thinking that I would believe wholeheartedly that when I am weak, then I am strong. I am asking for His sufficiency to far surpass my inadequacy. I am asking Him to prune me of an independently-lived life that avoids hardship.
I have no mommy missionary life suggestions for you today. I simply offer that I am weak and in need of His power, and I am in the fight to embrace contentment and dependence on our Sufficient God. If you are struggling to keep up with life and ministry, you are not alone, friend. I pray my words will encourage you and you too will see His grace is sufficient.
Linnette and her husband Dave began their marriage and Nav staff career eleven years ago (EDGE and SIT at Colorado State) and they currently lead the collegiate Nav ministries in Nashville. They have four children: Kate (8), Kylie (6), McKenzie (4), and Daniel (3). Linnette and Dave are passionate about the shared mission of raising up disciple-makers and raising up their kids.