Monday, November 8, 2010

Teen Mother... of FIVE.

So my mom always teases me (or maybe she’s not), saying if something were to happen to her and my father while the kids are still underage, I’d get custody of them all. 
Recently I’ve been getting a lot of practice mothering my five potential kids-to-be. All I can say is, if God allows that to happen, He’s gonna have to give the grace to go with it. 
(Which I know he can, and I’ll prove it later)
My dear cousin Leah was the first person I remember quoting the phrase, “with great privilege comes great responsibility” to me, back when I was 8 or so. Here was the situation: my sister had the privilege of riding in the front seat, BUT she had the responsibility of carrying my brother’s car seat to the car. (Oh the good old days, when life’s toughest moments were having to watch the ice cream truck pass you by or having to settle in to my nice comfy bed for an afternoon nap)
Well, today, I’m gonna turn that phrase around and talk about my (roughly) 30-hour experience of unexpectedly becoming a teen mother of five. Unexpectedly is the key word here, because it’s not like I haven’t watched the kid-siblings for more than 24hrs by myself before. The issue this time was unexpected and uncertain circumstances that caused every one of our worlds to tilt a little bit downwards.
Lunch at the Berreth house is often an eventful time, but this past Sunday’s lunch is sure to top most. 
During a great conversation about seeing God in everyday life, mom suddenly panicked, hand over heart, and complained of being faint. As she continued to feel terribly worse, I followed my parents request to dial 9-1-1 and picked up the phone. I honestly was so stunned, that I don’t even remember what address I gave them as the “place of emergency”. Thankfully a little while later, an ambulance showed up at our door, so either I got it right, or God moved whatever address I recited, to our house for the moment of need. 

Mom ended up going to a nearby hospital, getting some tests run, but felt much better and is back at home now, feeling better (Praise God!) but still looking for the “cause” of the episode.
While I don’t want to minimize the seriousness of her situation, I’d like to turn back and take a look at mine, because it's where God proved His grace to me.
My Story:
Mom and Dad are on their way to the hospital and suddenly I find myself with four curious and questioning children and one little sprite too frazzled to take a nap. I’m overwhelmed. I begin making calls to cancel my involvement in Sunday night activities, and word starts to get out about this completely unexpected hospital trip.
As I said earlier, i’m going to turn that phrase around to say: 
with great responsibility comes great privilege. 
I was completely overwhelmed and not completely finished processing what was happening when the privilege of grace was bestowed on me.
God’s grace abounded, pouring into our stunned lives, helping us remain faithful to what He called us to.
Privilege Number 1: (almost too obvious) God gave His promised grace. His grace was sufficient for me. (2 Cor 12:9) that’s almost ‘nuff said right there. He drew me near to Himself, kept my heart strong, my fears at bay, my mind clear and my head on straight (or at least as straight as the chiropractor has been able to get it so far =)) 
He showered His blessings on us.
Privilege Number 2: God gave godly neighbors, friends and church family that lifted us up in prayer. Not only that, they showed up on my doorstep, prayed with me, took kids for a couple hours here and there, washed counters, watched kids while I did laundry, gave me a smile, encouraging word or friendly hug. They brought food, they spent the night, called, cared, LOVED on me and my siblings. Such a privilege to call them my family in Christ.
Thank you, thank you everyone who was here for us in our time of need. I appreciate every one of you so much, that words cannot even begin to express my gratitude. 
Privilege Number 3: God gave pain relievers. It sounds funny, but I cannot tell you how relieved I was to have the ability open my cupboard and take (slightly more than suggested) medicine that silenced my own pains for the moment, while I needed to go above and beyond what was normally required of me. Not only was i offered relief, but my dear darling little spritely Allie-girl who woke up suffering from a 102.8 fever, was as well. She was miserable. She was crying. I felt terrible for her. 
God provided medicine to “rescue” us in our time of need.

Disclaimer (for Justin & any others questioning): I'm NOT a druggie!I almost never take pain killers, my usual treatment plan is sleep and water, but drastic times call for drastic measures. True story =)
Of course I cannot speak of God’s blessings without seeing parallels to the greatest blessing and gift He gave us, His Son.
As our friends came by, I could not stop thinking of how if we didn’t have this supernatural bond through the blood of Christ, I would very likely have been mostly alone.
As I took the pills to quiet my pain, I thanked Jesus for the pain he bore in His own body (without pain relief) so that I might be spared eternal suffering.
There are so many things in everyday life that point to the gift God gave us all.
His gift is such an undeserved blessing. And all we have to do is accept it.
I’m so grateful for everything He gave me. 
God required "much" of me, but He gave me much more blessing than I ever would have imagined. I can’t thank God enough for carrying my siblings and myself through these last hours of uncertainty and waiting. I can’t thank Him enough for the privilege of being able to trust that He will continue to be faithful to us

‘Cause I don’t have to worry that God’s not gonna be there... When I wake up, when I lie down, when I stumble, when I rise, when the ambulance comes, when my world is shaken, His grace is sufficient. His power is made perfect in my weakness. (2 Cor 12:9)


see, I told you I could prove that God gives sufficient grace according to our needs.

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