Recently Stef and I reached out to a handful of friends and asked what their biggest struggle is when it comes to being a prayerful mom. Some of them had littles, some bigs, and some even grown kids.
We were amazed how many of those moms responded with the very same struggle - I just can’t seem to find enough TIME...
Time /tīm/ - “a point of time as measured in hours and minutes…”
Why is it we can never seem to measure out enough time? It seems to continually elude our grasp.
One of my favorite authors C.S. Lewis writes, “Notice how we are perpetually surprised at Time.” (How ‘time flies’; how we never seem to have enough of it.) “In heaven’s name, why?” he asks, “Unless, indeed, there is something in us which is not temporal.” As immortal beings, time surprises us, because we simply weren't made for it. We were made for eternity.
Over the last few weeks, as I’ve pondered this universal mom struggle of not enough time to pray, I keep hearing the same words on replay in my head,
“God doesn’t want our time… He just wants us.”
Mamas, God isn’t bound by time, and He doesn’t want us to be either. He lives in the eternal present, and in this present moment is precisely where He wants to meet us in prayer - even if that’s all we have - a moment.
In some of my blogs, I’ve written about a lie so many of us buy into that I’m not enough; and I’m not doing enough. I’m realizing this very same lie echoes every time we fault ourselves for not having enough time to pray: I don’t pray enough.
After college, I returned to my own high school and taught Theology for a few years. I’ll never forget a well-seasoned teacher, who’d been teaching for decades, offering me a piece of wisdom with a dose of caution. “Teaching is like motherhood. You’ll never feel you’ve done enough.” The mother of four grown daughters, this woman had obviously heard the lie too.
Motherhood gives us so little time... so little time to ourselves. There are seasons of our motherhood when we have little or no freedom to steal away and carve out time to pray.
That kind of time feels like pure luxury.
But friends, God doesn’t want our time; He just wants us.
I keep coming back to a quote from St. Therese of Lisieux that I believe is one of the most profound and pure definitions of prayer:
"Prayer is a surge of the heart, it is a simple look turned toward heaven,
it is a cry of recognition and of love, embracing both trial and joy."
God loves us. He loves you. So can you imagine the delight it brings Him when, within a moment of your day, your heart surges with love for Him? When you remember who He is, or recall what He’s done? When you remember who you are and what He’s done for you? When perhaps you look at your husband or child, and your heart surges with praise and thanksgiving to God?
Or when, within a moment of your day, you offer a single look to heaven and cry out the simplest words: Lord, help me; I need You; Be with me; Heal me; Forgive me; I surrender; I trust in You; Come Holy Spirit.
In these moments, God meets you. This is prayer.
Think about the story of the hemorrhaging woman in the Bible. Within a moment, all she did was reach out her hand to touch Jesus’ cloak as He walked through a large crowd. As soon as she touched him, He knew it. He turned around and said, “Someone touched me; I know that power has gone out from me.” (Luke 8:46)
Jesus longs for us. He waits for us. And if a simple look toward heaven is all we have, then that’s all He wants. Because in that moment, we have given Him the very gift of ourselves.
And when we give Him ourselves, He give us Himself. He cannot hold back.
This is prayer.
Prayer isn’t measured by a span of moments we manage to neatly carve in our day; it’s measured by a single moment in which we manage to offer a single glance to heaven.
Prayer isn’t about finding enough moments, but finding Him in the present moment.
God doesn’t want your time; He just wants you.
You are enough for Him. So give Him you.
Let your heart surge. Let your eyes look up. Let your soul cry out.
And in that sacred moment of reaching out, the Lord will turn to you immediately, knowing it is you that touched Him.