I love chocolate. But that may have been obvious by the name of this blog. On rough days, I eat chocolate to get by – to survive. Raising children is hard work. Small children are a lot of work. (Right now, I want to say that raising small children is harder than any other stage. But I suspect that in a few years, I will want to retract that. So I won’t officially say it.)
As I was first brainstorming this post, I was going to write a post all about how we need chocolate to survive children. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized how totally wrong that philosophy is. Sure, there are calming benefits to eating chocolate. (Sometimes I think I imagine more benefit than the chocolate actually gives.) But relying on chocolate for survival is not how it should be. We should be relying on God for our survival.
With small children constantly demanding our time and attention, spending time with God can be challenging (or impossible). I find that time to myself is a premium. Spending time reading my Bible without interruption is impossible. So, slowly over time, I have quit reading my Bible.
One year in junior high, my Christian school had a drama class. One of the plays was a skit with three demons attempting to distract a christian from reading his Bible. They tried phone calls, his girlfriend and his love of his hair. But he stayed on track. Finally, they resorted to Plan B. They told him, “You have plenty of time later to read your Bible.” And after a few minutes, he put his Bible away because he thought he could do it later.
I think that has been kind of been my story as a mom. I’ll read my Bible later when I have more time. But when I do have a few moments to myself while sitting on the toilet, I check Facebook, emails or something totally unrelated to my Bible. And as time goes on, Bible reading is totally forgotten and prayer becomes scarce. Until one day, I wake up and realize the reason I am so frustrated and emotionally exhausted is because I have totally forgotten my life source. I am depending on chocolate for something that I should be depending on God for. This is not metaphor or what could happen, this is where I am living right now. It is terrible to admit, I know. But this is a constant struggle for me. Some months, I’m on a spiritual mountain top. Then I speed headlong into the valley where I forget all about the mountains. Then I reach the bottom of the valley and head back up the mountain.
I guess my main question is this – what are you depending on? If it is chocolate or (enter applicable word here), then what are you doing to reshift your focus and make God the One you rely on to survive? When I ask myself the second question, I can’t give a good answer. I want to say I’ll trust God. I’ll stop worrying. I’ll…, I’ll…, I’ll… – I’m to emotionally worn out to even attempt a good answer. Maybe my first step is to commit to listen to Christian radio again and to read my Bible once a week. It feels like a half-hearted attempt. But right now, I think it will be better than relying on chocolate for my survival.
And I may need to change the tagline for this blog. Any suggestions?