I get the pleasure of doing ministry with this lady! Amy is one of the amazing women on the Collide team, as well as the Collide Advisory Board. Amy is an amazing counselor whom I always feel so confident when pointing people in need of counseling her direction. Amy has just recently become a mama and I love how she speaks here to the ordinary spaces and places in which Jesus collides with her. May we grab hold of our ordinary with a greater sense of the Divine as she so encourages.– Willow
Willow asked me a while ago if I would write for her blog and I have to admit that I have been struggling with it. Struggling because I have worried that my thoughts on collisions with Jesus would be too simple, too mundane and lack the plot that makes for good story telling. But this morning on a walk in the woods with no make-up, moccasins, my dog and a cup of French-press in hand, I had an ordinary collision with Jesus that prompted me to begin writing.
As I walked the trails through our property, Jesus ever so sweetly reminded me that He collides with us in the extraordinary and the ordinary. In the New Testament we see Jesus collide with people through walking on water, healing the sick and raising the dead. The same Jesus, has lunch with his disciples (the fellas I like to call them), he visits family and he rests. I’m not sure about you, but I have rarely had times in my life where Jesus has slammed into me. Jesus doesn’t tend to use miracles, signs of wonder, or elaborate fanfare to meet with me. He collides with me most often in whispers during ordinary life.
My life has felt particularly ordinary lately. I became a mom 4 ½ months ago to the sweetest little boy. There is not a lot about motherhood that is luxurious or exciting. I spend most of my time looking at a baby trying to draw coos from him (I tell myself that this is for his language development just so that I can feel like I am doing something productive), covered in spit-up and changing diapers. My days are broken up in hurried 45 minute chunks, where if Knox is sleeping, I lunge at the bathroom to pee, to dress and if I’m lucky I make it to the fridge to eat. ☺
When Knox was about 5-6 weeks old, he was really struggling with his nighttime sleep. My husband Dana and I truthfully thought that we might die from sleep deprivation. One night we even counted how many times we got up. 14 times!!!! Are you kidding me! It was on one such night that I had an ordinary collision with Jesus. I was up with Knox for the umpteenth time feeling frustrated and sorry for myself. I remember praying desperately to God to help him sleep and correspondingly I turned my bounce rocking into high gear (being a mom is seriously the best work out I’ve ever had…that’s a little depressing and also a window into how much I exercise)! So I’m in the nursery, in the dark, bouncing and willing Knox to sleep, when in my head I just have this simple thought, “I’m going to miss this someday.” THAT WAS IT. That was my collision with Jesus. He gave me a simple/ordinary truth that totally changed my perspective. Suddenly my desperate, frustrated rocking became smooth as I soaked in the deliciousness of my son.
There are so many moments as a mom that I feel like wishing away. I am constantly looking forward to what is next. I can’t wait for him to speak. I so wonder what is going on in his little brain that I long to hear about what he thinks and feels. I can’t wait for him to walk, run and I am sooooo ready to climb trees with him. What I want is some excitement and adventure. Some fanfare if you will. But if I keep looking forward, wishing away the spit-up and long nights, I’m going to miss out on Knox as a baby. Knox and Jesus are teaching me to live in the present.
Looking back there are many seasons in life where I sacrificed the boring present to dream about the future. As a single student I wished for tantalizing romance in a relationship. As a grad-student I wished to be out of school and into the thrill of a career. As a young married women I yearned for a family. How many times have I looked forward the next thing at the expense of the rich collisions that Jesus has for me in the present? I am a little embarrassed to admit how many times I have done this.
So my task currently is to learn to collide with Jesus and Knox and Dana in the ordinary of our life. To really KISS Dana as he runs out of the door in the morning for work. To hold and snuggle and rock Knox with gusto before he turns into a squirmy toddler that won’t allow me to do so. To revel in dirty floors caused by dogs, kids, and friends rather than wishing them away. To soak up the mundane of mommyhood (naps, diaper changes, laundry and dishes) because there is richness in my ordinary and Jesus meets me in it all.- Amy