This is the time of year when I am thankful for a change in routine. Or any routine at all. Because, if I'm honest, I didn't maintain much of an intentional mothering strategy this summer. Summer was so full of spontaneity, and proclaiming how much I hate schedules, and breaking all of the rules. And it was fun! But then it finally caught up to me. Ah, yes...this is why I start to snap at the kids because they are still wide awake at 10:30pm. Ah, yes...this is why all of my normal disciplines of eating well, and reading my Bible, and having accountability have fallen away.

I finally realized it was a problem when I started seeking little escapes more and more. And instead of engaging with the people around me (ahem, my children), I kinda wanted to hide. I straddle the line between extrovert and introvert. And my hermit qualities started winning the tug of war after several months of saying yes to too many things and having children who prefer to be physically next to me 24 hours a day. And so, I feel super disconnected in so many areas of my life. My current prayer is to have discipline and renewed strength to mother with intention and attentiveness. Because it's far too tempting to take the easy road.

I came across this quote recently and just love how crushingly real it is....

"We cannot fully comprehend God's love, nor can our meager words fully define it. But from what I understand of it now, I know it is a love I cannot escape. It is a love that follows me out to the car when I have blown up at my family and want to run away. It is a love that taps me on the shoulder when I am basking in my "good mom" identity -- as though I don't need Christ's righteousness, as though I have somehow come up with my own. It is a love that pursues me and settles me and continues to transform every bit of me into the very image of Christ. "
- Excerpt from "Christ in the Chaos" by Kimm Crandall

I think I've just had a few too many days of feeling rebellious toward my own need for Savior, and then subsequently making selfish choices, and then subsequently remembering that I need the righteousness of Christ to redeem my heart that's so prone to wandering. I've chosen myself and my needs too many days in a row. The consequence is that I’ve lost that motherly tenderness that I so desire my children to experience. And furthermore, I’ve parched myself of God’s living water, my sustenance.

Bind my wandering heart to thee.

It's His love that always draws me back. There's only so far that I'll drift away from the shore on my little raft before I turn around and realize how desperately I want to get back to my Father who is waving me in.

I'm looking forward to the next couple months of some shakeups in our routine as well as a renewed self-awareness of the disciplines that feel so comforting to me. And the book quote above reminds me that there's no depth of indifference or distance wandered that exists outside of God's all encompassing love.

Bri Carlisle is wife to Mike and Mama to Ashley and Dillon. You can find her at her personal blog, Woven, where you’ll find a mixture of pretty pictures and heartfelt words. You can also find her frequently hanging out on instagram.

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