Bruised Reeds & A Trip to the Beach

When our vacation started on Thursday morning I was already worn to a pulp...

Let me start by saying that we have not been out of town as a family since May. While all of our friends and literally everyone on Facebook reminded me that Summer was the time to take these awesome family vacations, I was at home counting down the days until our long weekend at the beach in September. Ok, back to the weekend...

We decided to forego school on Wednesday in order to get the house clean and everything packed up so we could leave early Thursday morning. And as it often happens with these planned out "productive days," one mess after another happened. And if it wasn't a mess, it was a distraction. It was breaking up fights and talking it out and cleaning up lots and lots of spills. When Adam got home Wednesday evening I told him I felt like a hamster on a wheel all day long. So when we left on Thursday morning, I was mad. I was mad at my kids, mad at my not so clean house, mad that I had spent 3 hours folding laundry the night before vacation, and now I was mad at my husband who reminded me with a smile, "A load a day keeps the mountain away." Thanks a lot, hun.

Done. I was done. The day I had been looking forward to for months now brought anxiety, condemnation and tears.

But, we were officially on vacation now so let's put on a happy face and hope there's some rest for mama to be found on this trip. I so desperately need rest....

We arrived early and couldn't check in for a couple of hours so I got everyone dressed and we headed out on the beach. As I descended the stairs from our ocean front hotel, walking on the path of warm loose sand through the dunes, I came to the open shoreline. And it's always glorious and eye opening to behold the great expanse of water before you and realize just how small you are. I usually get so caught up in the beauty of the waves crashing and the anxiety of making sure my little people are still walking with me and not cutting their toes on shells or jumping in the water without allowing me to slather them with sunscreen. But today something else caught my attention.

Reeds....well, according to google they are called cord grass or spartina grass. But nevertheless when I saw them I stopped and the word "reed" came to mind. And thankfully God is slowly answering my prayer to write scripture on my heart so that I can recall it easily. I knew Isaiah held a verse about a bruised reed but good old google helped me pinpoint the exact chapter and verse.

Isaiah 42:3 says, "a bruised reed he will not break."

And in that moment, I knew the Lord was speaking to his very weary, very bruised daughter. A friend reminded me today of the palm trees during a hurricane that continue to be beaten by the wind over and over but never break. And Isaiah 42:3 reminded me that in all of my mess, my pity parties & my weakness, He is incredibly strong. And He's strong enough for me.

I'm in an incredibly hard season, y'all. I mean what mom of littles isn't?! We have an incredibly demanding but oh so blessed calling on our lives. Add in owning a business and a farm and homeschooling and a husband whose job has him away more than home and you've got a down right frazzled mama a lot of the time.

But let's get back to vacation and I'll wrap this up. As the weekend went on, the demands on mama continued. Migraine after migraine. Bad food, bad sleep, and poop. Y'all I'm talking massive amounts of poop. Lots and lots of poop happened this weekend. I was so sick and tired of cleaning up other people's messes while I just wanted to relax. And resentment set in. I looked at my husband with disgust when he went to walk on the beach by himself while I was stuck making sure everyone was kept alive and well. I internally rolled my eyes when he woke up and went fishing on the beach by himself. (Now don't get me wrong in thinking the whole weekend was a bust. It wasn't. There were many many beautiful moments and I saw my husband and kids smile more in those 4 days than they have in the past few months.)

So I decided to throw a huge pity party. I'm talking the worst kind. A passive aggressive one. One where I give the cold shoulder a lot. I don't feel like speaking to anyone, so I don't. I just make everyone feel like I'm mad at them. Yeah, that kind. But thankfully He always pulls me back in and I felt Him speak to me, "Daughter, did you really think you'd find rest in a vacation?! I am your rest."

Matthew 11:25 says, 
"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest."

Ahhh....He's right. He always is.

So for the mamas out there who are overworked, underappreciated, worn out, emotionally exhausted, physically exhausted, and severely underpaid, THIS message from the Father is for you. (And me.)

He is your rest.

Your husband isn't going to tell you you're beautiful enough to make you feel loved.
Your kids aren't going to stop pooping their pants, at least not for a few more years.
Your laundry pile is going to continue to grow.
Dishes are always going to need washing.
You're going to have to stop everything you're doing for the 27th time each day to talk about why hitting is not ok and why "stupid" is not the best word to use toward your sibling.
And no vacation with your husband and kids is ever going to be restful in itself. It's just not. It's not meant to be.

Because all of the rest you desire can only be found in Jesus. End of story. Stop looking everywhere else to find your worth. He sees you, He knows you're a bruised reed and He will not break you.

He loves you too much.

(Y'all be sure to remind me of the blog post when I get into a "why me" mood again.)


  1. I hear ya!!! We might not be in the poop stage anymore but getting ready for vacation is no joke nor is managing everyone on vacation! Glad you found your rest, momma!

  2. As crazy as your life seems at this moment in time, it is so nice to see you enjoying it as well. It all goes so fast sometimes. Peace and love to you, Michelle.