I have a treat for you today on the blog. These words today come from a dear person in my life who also happens to be a debut children’s author, Amy Botts took a need she saw and a desire in her heart and did something about them. Amy is a busy mom and military wife but still made time to respond to the call of God on her life, It is her prayer that the mother who is struggling to keep all those plates spinning will be encouraged and that anyone with a desire to do what’s right for the sake of all life will be empowered to act.
Here are Amy’s words:
As I sit on my couch I look around at my mostly messy house with various beanie babies and jumbo legos scattered around. If I pick them up right now it will surely be the 12th time I’ve sent those prodigal toys back to their plastic homes. Flashes of different parts of the messy home play through my mind like a rejected movie montage of monotony. As I sit here I make the conscious decision to turn in my homework late, taking the possible 10% ding off of my first assignment in my last year of school. As I take my hourly mental inventory of what’s been accomplished today and what will not get accomplished today and will instead be added to tomorrow’s “to do” list I find myself taking a deep breath and quietly exhaling a quick, “Lord help me please.”
My day is not unique. This small fraction of my day could be inserted into the story of any mom I know. These thoughts that dominate so much of my mental space feel at times like a never-ending waterfall of cascading chores and meals to make and children to tend to with their seemingly endless needs and I, at times feel like I’m buzzing with this kind of numbness to it all that only ceases after a cup of chamomile and the almost total silence that 10pm gently ushers in.
And then, just when I start to feel calm and collected in my thoughts a random stray question darts in. And then that leads to another thought. And I pick up my phone and proceed to interrupt my already terribly fragile circadian rhythm with a good old fashioned scroll binge.
With an experienced hold on my phone I speed glance at the latest posts. My friend’s birth announcement of her twins, who my neighbor’s sister-in-law got on her quiz about what celebrity do you look like, a picture from a co-worker from 2 decades ago that’s just inappropriate enough to merit an unfollow, a picture of my step-cousin’s keto dinner of chicken and potatoes and cheesy, bacon broccoli.
And then I stop on a picture of a baby in a womb-like shadowy bubble with the words “sign this petition to join the fight for life.” I stop, click on it, take the 6 seconds it takes to add my name and email to the hopefully ever-growing list of others joining the fight for life. And I wonder if it will really help.
I always sign those petitions when I come across them. My heart is always pulled in the direction of helping defend babies at risk in the womb. I actually can’t remember when it started, this pull towards helping. But admittedly, have never done much more than that. But I have wanted to, and I have made some efforts in the past but nothing went beyond the desire to help at the local alternatives clinic, even though I really wanted to make it work. Meanwhile my life was full of serving in other areas of need. There was always a friend or family member in need of help, serving opportunities at church I was deeply committed to already, not to mention the responsibilities of work and school. This was all when I was single. Now I am married and co-homeschooling my 2 young step-sons and chasing my little 2 year old girl around the house and volunteering at my church while getting ready for my husband to be deployed, still in school trying to get that degree.
I am busy, and most of the time too busy. And I know that it’s not going to get less busy.
But that tug and pull on my heart continues to grow, and so I did the only thing I could do. I prayed and asked God to help me do something with this desire. And the answer came after hearing a Bible story that in the past usually left me feeling that dreaded feeling of “I’m not doing enough,” but this time was different.
The parable of the talents in Matthew 25 tells the story of a great man who left his house to travel and entrusted the care of his property to his servants. He left each of the 3 servants talents or money and gave 5 to one of the servants, 2 to another and 1 to the last servant and it was all given according to each one’s ability. He came home eventually to find that 2 of the servants had invested the talents and made a profit and the man was pleased with their efforts but the servant who’d been given 1 was afraid of investing because of the possibility of not making a profit so he simply buried the talent. The man was angry at the servant for this and told him he could have at the very least put in the bank and it would have collected some interest.
I have heard this story more times than I can count as most children raised in church could say about any Bible story. But it convicted me in a way it never has before. I pondered this story for months and all I could think was this: I don’t have to do the greatest thing anyone has ever done, I just need do somethingwith what God has given me on this earth and to do something in the midst of a busy life that is just going to get busier.
So out of this came a book. I wrote a small children’s book. A book to read to babies and children about how we all start out, as little specks in our mother’s womb and that little life holds value and meaning and that it begins at conception. It’s sweet with a bit of silliness and color and it will by no means conquer the entire war that is currently waging in this country over this issue, but I have always wanted to write and especially write children’s books and it seems that seed has now grown into something that I believe will help shape young minds who will carry on the fight into their lives.
A good friend who knows me and my busy life well asked me “How in the world did you find time to write a book?”. “I can’t remember” is the honest answer, only that it was last Summerand it just sort of happened. But ultimately, I believe the reason it happened is because God answered a prayer I have prayed what feels like a million times before and will pray it at least a million more times, “God help me, please.” And I know it was God because as opposed to so many other efforts for things I have attempted in the past, this felt relatively calm and peaceful and there wasn’t striving in it. I know it was God answering my prayer.
I want this to encourage you, but I do not want this to come across as an encouragement to “do more for the Lord!” That is not what I am saying.
In the story it says that the man gave the talents to the servants “according to their ability.” Last summer when I wrote this story, it was according to my ability that God gave me at that time, and in that season.
So I want to leave you with the encouragement to simply ask God what he would have you do with the “talent” he’s given you. What is tugging on your heart as you read this? Give that to God and simply say in sincerity, “God, help me. Please.” I think and hope that like me, you’ll be absolutely blessed and surprised that He will gently and perfectly answer this prayer. His yoke is easy and his burden is light.
You can find Amy on Facebook here. Do a little something that matters today. You can start by showing Amy your love and support. It’s just a click away.
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