Get Off the Monkey Bars: Finding Freedom in Letting Go

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I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress, my God; on Him I lean and rely, and in Him I [confidently] trust! Psalm 91:2 AMP

Growing up, I had a love-hate relationship with the monkey bars.  I loved the idea of going from one side to the other floating on air. Other kids seemed to effortlessly glide across.

While I loved the idea, I hated the feeling when I left the security of the platform to reach for the next bar.  At this point, the reality sunk in, I was too far to reach the platform and yet too scared to let go.  It didn’t take me very many attempts to realize that I could not do this in my own strength.  I would inevitably become frozen in fear…

This is a portion of an article that I have featured on Encouragement Café  and Crosswalk today. I would love for you to read and then come back and share your thoughts and something you are holding on to in the comment section.

If you read my devotion on Encouragement Café or Crosswalk and are here for the first time, Welcome. Feel free to look at the “About Me” page to learn more about me and then share something about yourself in the comment section. I would love to get to know my readers better.

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Finding Calm in the Chaos

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Thanks to Proverbs 31:27, “She watches over the activities of her household,” I now realize that I am not supposed to do everything. I have come to discover that things around the Whitaker household do not have to be done “my” way.

With five children, there has to be some sort of order in our house. Therefore, every week I sit down with the kids and they take turns selecting their assigned chores for the week. Some of the jobs are daily and some are just once a week – around their schedule (within reason). The magnetic chore chart that we use has pictures, so even our youngest knows what each job is and what her tasks are for the week.

I am learning to let go of the need to have the perfect house. I would rather my children have memories of a home – somewhere safe, comfortable enough to be themselves and relax. Things are not put off entirely, but there are more important things in my life. Don’t miss out on time with friends and loved ones to make everything “perfect,” some things can wait. Speaking of which, I need to go, it’s time to play.

 

I challenge you to let go around your house this week. Tell me what you let go of this week or even share some tips that work around your house. I will check back later. I look forward to hearing from you.

 

Struggling to Let Go

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For many of us fall means back to school. Every year since I was very little, I longed for the day when we would go shopping for school supplies – new crayons, pencils and notebooks. They just screamed of new possibilities. What would the school year bring? What new friends would I meet? What assignments and projects would these tools help me create?

Now as a mother, the feelings of back to school are not the same. Oh, I still enjoy helping the kids select their supplies, but it also means letting go. Letting go of them during the day to attend school: learn, grow and make friends.

This year letting go was taken to a whole new level. You see, up to this year I always had a little one at home with me. Someone to play and laugh with. Our youngest, Maddy, started kindergarten. As difficult as that alone is our oldest, Taylor, started her junior year of high school at the Indiana Academy (two and a half hours from home).

This transition has been difficult for both of us. Taylor and I have always been really close and now I don’t get to see that bright smiling face everyday. However, I know that this is not only a fabulous opportunity for her, but also where God wants her. Therefore, I must loosen my grip and let go.

You may not be able to relate to a child going off to school, but if you are like me, then you can identify with problems of letting go of your will. How many times have I said, this is my goal and then map out exactly how to get from point A to point B. The problem is that I didn’t come before God and ask for His direction, His leading and His plan. I see God moving and working and I take off on my own because it is a struggle to let go of some of my dreams and goals. I must remember that God will do exceedingly abundantly more than I could ever hope or imagine (Ephesians 3:20). The problem arises when I try to receive God’s best without letting go of my will first. We can’t hold on to both.

I simply love how God works, especially when He shows His love and presence to us in a real way. As I was driving home from dropping Taylor off at school after a long weekend, I was feeling down. I was alone with my thoughts, which can be a combination for disaster. I was praying for God to be with Taylor and help her as well as give me the peace and comfort I needed. It was just about dusk, but I looked up and saw part of a rainbow. There wasn’t a drop of rain. God provided that piece of a rainbow to me at that moment as a reminder that He keeps His promises.

Therefore, you and I must loosen our grip and let go. We are not alone and God will take care of everything down to the smallest details.