For my wife and the mother of my children, Katie
Tired – she rises once again;
Will the children give her grief?
Why another sleepless night?
Why so naughty? Why so obstinate to rest?
Weary – another day; another night
Watching. Feeding. Kissing. Rebuking.
Temper flares, conviction seizes
Where is my patience? Where is my grace?
Tender – she sees a smiling face;
The children all adore her
They see in her – safety, supply
And a love that will not die
In their memory am I cranky or kind?
Failure – she weeps again
Harsh words quickly spoken
She gathers them in her arms
She kisses their naughty heads
What example am I leaving them?
Repentant – she turns again
Just as she did the day before
She prays in silence
Words of love, she offers
What words can a sinner speak?
Hopeful – she sees her Savior
Dying on the accursed tree
It was for her failure he was abandoned
Faced his Father’s harsh displeasure
What greater message can I share but this?
My only hope for frailty seen?
Forgiven – she knows she is
Trust in her substitute
Peace washes over, no condemnation
She looks at her children
Sinners they are, just like she
What legacy will I leave?
Hopeful – new affection rises
Love for God, love for child
In love she tells of His love
Of pardon full and free
Is there any better news than this?
She wonders – aloud
Loving – she repeats once again
Yesterday, last week, last year!
The same good news, fresh and clear
She tells them God is holy
She tells them all have sinned
She tells them Jesus died and rose
Do they understand?
She wonders – aloud
Transformed – before their grubby faces
They see a love, though they know not the words
Mommy has found something precious
That overcomes her scorn
They hear her talk of sin and love, grace free
Forgotten is her angry face
In the light of mercy displayed
She knows not what their minds contain
Nor what their hearts perceive, but…
Growing – slow and sure as they
The days and years go by
The grace that saves, grows and shows
A living hope inside
Patience, so elusive, slightly swells it bounds
Do they see the Spirit’s work?
Prayerful – she lives each day
Knowing her example to them
Is more of grace than exemplary
Will seeds sown, in failure’s midst
Sprout within their souls?
Steadfast – she considers her salvation
How it was by God’s own power
Not by her wise volition
She knows the same is for her children –
True. It drives her again to her knees
When will they say like mommy,
Praise God, Christ died for me?
Resting – she sees another day
Failure and victory therein
But still the Gospel is the same
The Sovereign Lord he reigns
Why would I ever doubt him?
Joyful – at first mixed with pain
She sees the signs of cursed fall
Each day, selfish, angry, envious
Her children show it all
Wait! Glorious moment!
Why these tears my child?
Amazement – at effectual calling
Her child to her replies
I have sinned and deserve God’s judgment
I know I ought to die
But so many times you told me
Of your hope that never fades
This is now my hope of glory
My mercy for today
How can I praise him enough?
Contemplative – years have passed
God worked through my failure
To save my children’s souls
Because His word never fails
It does for whatever it goes
What else has God been doing?
Through the pain and mundane?