Poor as Church Mice, Richer than Kings

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.

Ecclesiastes 3:1, NIV

The past few months have kept me busy. This afternoon, I took a break to read a new book by a local author. As I was getting ready to sit on the swing outside, my husband showed me footage of water in the woods behind our house. I’d not walked out back in a while, so I donned a pair of flip-flops and whistled for my dog.

I walked down a steep, slippery hill and stayed clear of the slick, muddy side of the path. Sure enough, I saw a large pool of water from the excessive rain in our area. My dog ran ahead of me exploring every leaf – always keeping me within sight. By the time I’d climbed up a nearby hill back to the flat acreage up closer to the road, I was feeling quite rejuvenated.

I returned inside to the computer and had missed a text from my oldest son. He asked me what VHS video I used to play for him when he was little. I couldn’t recall right away, but a quick search online brought memories flooding back. I watched the colorful video and heard the music playing, and my mind transported me to the days of baby snuggles, exersaucers, and folding onesies. Those days seem simultaneously like yesterday and a lifetime ago.

Time for Everything

I let the video play and sensed tears stinging my eyes. I remember those days. Money for date nights, shopping sprees, and vacation was scarce. I made baby food and froze servings in ice cube trays. I grew vegetables in the summer months and crocheted for fun. There was a never-ending pile of laundry to wash, fold, and put away. Keeping things clean and taking care of little ones was my full-time job. Ecclesiastes 3:1 says, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens” (NIV). At the time, it seemed that season would never end.

There were late night bottles and diaper changes. There were also baby kisses, rocking little ones to sleep, reading bedtime stories, and folding little hands to pray. We played peek-a-boo, sang Jesus Loves Me, laughed at how fast we could pull big helium balloons toward our face on Valentine’s Day, and put handprints in cement. It sometimes seemed we didn’t have much. It also seemed we had everything in the world.

Time is Limited

My boys are much older now. Days of folding tiny clothing is long gone. One of my favorite possessions is a Nest Home. It is just to the left of my kitchen sink and it plays back all my favorite pictures in Google photos. I look at it every day while I’m cooking or cleaning. It is a daily reminder of how quickly time flies.

Ecclesiastes warns us that there is a time for everything. But time is limited, and we must make the most of it. Time and all other good gifts are from God, and they all serve a great purpose. We should treasure and enjoy the gifts He gives us, but we must recognize them for what they are–blessings from a loving Father!

He has made everything beautiful and appropriate in its time. He has also planted eternity [a sense of divine purpose] in the human heart [a mysterious longing which nothing under the sun can satisfy, except God]- yet man cannot find out (comprehend, grasp) what God has done (His overall plan) from the beginning to the end. I know that there is nothing better for them than to rejoice and to do good as long as they live; and also that every man should eat and drink and see and enjoy the good of all his labor–it is the gift of God. I know that whatever God does, it endures forever; nothing can be added to it nor can anything be taken from it, for God does it so that men will fear and worship Him [with awe-filled reverence, knowing that He is God].

Ecclesiastes 3:11-14, AMP

Hold On

So for you mamas in the throes of runny noses, potty training, and stepping on toys in the middle of the night–hold on. It won’t last forever. And that is the joyous and tearful truth of life. It is fleeting–both the good times and the bad. Kiss the bottoms of those baby feet one more time. Take a moment longer in the rocking chair and breathe in that baby lotion smell.

We can learn much as we watch the strong love of grandmothers cheering on youngsters as they shoot for the basket, struggle to hit the right notes, or toil on sounding out words in their picture book. The reward for our labors will be seen in time. We can enjoy the moments until then. They are all gifts.

Thinking back, I remember when people would tell me that time flies and to enjoy moments with my babies. I tried to make the most of each moment. I didn’t want to miss a thing. It still boggles my mind at how fast they grew up, however. And while I am enjoying all the blessings of this new season of my life – in these quiet moments – I recall when we were poor as church mice and richer than kings.

Today, when I cook dinner for the three men in my life, I’ll see the scrolling photos. I’ll enjoy the captured moments and remember to make the most of the ones I’m creating today. I’ll remember how much God loves me, because He blessed me with the greatest treasures that will last forever.

To read more from Holly, check out her book – Believing for a Miracle – on Amazon in paperback. Also available for Kindle (only 2.99).

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