Handful of Pennies

This one is for all those mommas.

Those dauntless women who might have a precious little clinger under two and maybe a passel full of other priceless clutchers and hangers-on in various stages.

Because sometimes you may feel just a mite smothered with all the sloppy love-tokens and sticky grab-a-holds and continual I-need-you’s?

I recently took a glimpse at a young momma’s unspoken cry for help, subtly pictorial and yet so blatant.  And it all came flashing back. That day so many eons ago when I took my husband to the airport to send him soaring into the next challenge while I had to turn back to a car filled with tiny faces of expectation.  Peeping nest-bound birds with mouths gaping, longing for whatever nourishment of body and soul I could scrape together.

And I was slammed with the urge to run.

Just to jump the fence and flag that plane bound for who-knows-where and fly.  It froze me cold and fired me with a burning to live larger. To taste what life looked like outside the walls of my safe haven and indulge in a bit of reckless daring.

Handful of pennies - smallThen came memories of the moments when I would sob in the shower, convinced I couldn’t do one more day. I had these four gloriously crafted basins needing to be filled, but this cracked pitcher of a momma kept on leaking.  And who was going to replenish me when I got drained to the dregs?

Why didn’t anyone tell me it was going to be this hard?

Amazingly enough, the Giver of all grace saw fit that my anchor held. And those flaming longings for adventure and daring, those heart cries for fulfillment and just plain more, well, they found their place.

I learned to grow up into the richness of contentment. The beauty of gratefulness. But I gained more than that.

I learned that to give myself wholly, no hold-backs, was the most glorious adventure of all.  To pour all of me into all of my little ones by the mighty power of the Spirit brought a deeper fulfillment than any wild excursion or fantastic adventure might ever do.

Because I was created to invest.

To deposit treasure with a pay-off so rich that I could be the Queen of Sheba for all my wealth. Like any decent financial planner can tell you, those get-rich-quick sparks lead to nothing but empty disappointment.  A wise investor plans with an eye to the future, waiting for the ripe return.  Yeah, there’ve been countless days when I’d much rather splurge deep at Nordstroms than tuck away those few pennies. And the self-denial…ouch.  But the glory of the reward is so far exceeding what I could have imagined in those tough days of everything being just so hard.

So I carried on, day after golden day, reading countless books, snuggling, wiping tears and bottoms, correcting and disciplining.  Loving and laughing.  And training. So much heart training. Tucking away those pennies.

Handful of pennies - square2Today, I’m the Queen of Sheba.

Hang in there, momma.  Invest wisely.  Lean hard into the One who created you to lay a foundation which will never be shaken.  Learn to die to yourself, allowing Him to be all your strength in the weakness, all your contentment and thankfulness.

And take joy in these golden days.

You’re far, far richer than you know.

Photo by Josh Wray (#josh_wray)



    • Thank you, Nikki! Please send a huge bundle of love to Josh and the kids from the far-away Nesbitt clan!

  • Deep and rich as the ocean! Dad’s need this encouragement to be investors too. Thanks for being a model of faithfulness! I’m glad to see the stories return!

    • Thank you, Jason! You’re right… we all need that encouragement to keep giving during the grey days. God is so faithful to bring that abundant return on our investment!

  • That is beautiful! I am sending to my sis-in-love who has the same amount of clingers you had. Ok really….you cried in the shower?! I wonder if Catherine ever has. I’ll have to ask. You did produce beautiful fruit, and what you invested, well, as Catherine’s children have told her, she is splendid. Isn’t that what the Bible says, that they will rise up and call you splendid? 🙂

    UPDATE 5/23/16: This is what Catherine wrote back to me. It was so good, I had to share it with you. AND, yes, you may have the word splendid 🙂

    Absolutely beautifully written! And you know why I am able to read and digest it since it’s longer than a paragraph ??? Because I’m not home with my clingers! I so hope I’m the Queen someday and that I have lots of pennies deposited. The days are hard….even though some are in school! God help me be a good mother who honors Christ even with all the wiping. And yes I still wipe a lot of stuff! Noses, bottoms, counters, tears, scraped knees, floors and maybe a thing or two more! But as my mom’s Christmas gift so sweetly says, “If you think my hands are full, you should see my heart.”

    Guess what happened today? Out of the BLUE Samuel said to me at lunch, “Mama, I want to tell you thank you for being my mama, for taking care of me and looking out for me. I thank God for you.” Guess who was sobbing like a little baby??!?!?
    Thank you for this good read from your friend.

    • Thank you, Cindy. I love that word, and I’m going to adopt it if your nieces and nephews don’t mind!

  • I thought I might make a suggestion. If you called them kling-ons rather than clingers, you might really develop a male audience 😉 (Hope you know that’s just my sarcastic humor!)

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