Lord, give me the strength to get through today
Oh, and thank you that today is all I have to worry about
The procession starts at 6:30am when the dog bursts into our bedroom expecting a walk. She leaves with disappointment hanging from her jowls when I peel myself out of the bed and head to the shower. Shower, she knows, equals no walk – Mum’s work day.
The next to arrive is daughter number one.
“Why did someone set an alarm on my phone for 6:30am?” she demands, irrationally. “It scared me. I always set my alarm on my watch instead.”
I assure her that I have no idea how that happened and that her family is not conspiring against her. The point, I try to convince her, is that she had to get up at 6:30 anyway.
A stern stomping on the stairs announces daughter number two’s arrival well in advance of her appearance. She makes the usual passionate appeal, listing off the many wrongs that both her sisters have committed against her in the two minutes since they were all awake.
Appeased by a listening ear, she turns to exit the bathroom – where, might I remind you, I am still attempting to have a speedy shower in order to get to work – when daughter number three arrives.
She puts forward a convincing counter argument to the previous complainant, about all the things daughter number two has done wrong.
In the drying process, I receive two more visits: another from daughter number two, asking for help to purchase a birthday present for her friend, and daughter number three again, this time in floods of tears due to her continuing torture at the hands of daughter number two – who appears to have been in two places at one time, as she was just with me in the bathroom.
After managing to calm daughter three, I’m just about to leave the bathroom myself when husband number one-and-only arrives – fresh faced from his exercise session outside, where he’s been blissfully cocooned from this morning’s hearings.
When he opens his mouth to start talking to me, I make a dash for the bedroom, just before my adjudication capacity maxes out. Of course, he’s probably just about to make some polite spousal conversation, but at this stage I can’t chance it.
When I finally head out the front door – showered, work clothes and makeup applied, bag packed, children wrangled onto the school bus – I feel like it’s 10pm (in fact, it’s 7:30am).
… I am struck by how blessed I am to have all these small matters vying for my attention today.
The one thought clanging around my head as I make my way to the train is “each day has enough trouble of its own”, from Matthew 6:34. It sure does, I tell myself.
But while on the train, as the calls flow in and out of my mobile – the tradesman’s arrived but he doesn’t know what to do, remember to feed the dog, etc – I am struck by how blessed I am to have all these small matters vying for my attention today.
Being bogged down by myriad minor issues means that I am shackled to the present. And (so far) today, I have only only worried about today. (This feels like an accomplishment for someone who excels in the worry department!)
It also points me to the fact that I actually only have miniature things to contend with today. There are no big problems, illnesses or accidents. Having endured the previous week when my nephew was hit by a car – he’s OK, praise God – this fact should make me feel like I’ve won the lottery.
And so as I mutter a spontaneous prayer after the morning’s barrage, “to please give me strength to get through today, Lord”, I quickly add a part two.
“Oh, and thank you Lord that the trouble of today is minor, and that you sustained our family through the major trials as well. Please help me to continue to trust in your provision for each day. Enable me not to feel overwhelmed, but to take each day – and it’s trouble – as it comes.”