Thursday, November 8, 2012

Mamma Do you Love me????

I woke up this morning and my first priority was to get my house in order.  I have been working non-stop for weeks trying to get things back in order, and re-arrange the girls rooms.  They were all in the same room for a while and we separated them into two rooms.  Of course when we did that everything from cleaning out their rooms made it into my room and into the living room and the rest of the house became a good mix of chaos, then add that to the 13 days I was at the hospital with my dad last month that hasn't gotten caught up yet and we have ourselves a little nightmare!!

I've been studying about the New Testament in my Bible 110 class I'm taking through Liberty University.  I am a Religion major so I'm loving the bible class!  The last few weeks though I've been noticing that Simon-Peter, one of Jesus' disciples has been really sticking out to me!  Now, last year I wouldn't have been able to tell you any of what I'm about to tell you about Simon-Peter because I didn't know anything about him, except that he was a disciple.  But just stick with me through this and you will get where I'm going with all of this.

  First of all (just a few things you need to know) he does not listen very well, but has a strong personality.  Jesus called to him three times before he committed to following him.  When Simon first came to Jesus, he was actually brought to him by Andrew...he didn't willingly go in search for Jesus, but when he found him he responded to the call of Salvation, Jesus right away changed his name from Simon (which means listener) to Peter (rock).  Simon was FAR from a listener, and seems to be a stubborn man which I believe is why Jesus gave him the name Peter.  (John 1:42)

The second calling to Peter was when he and Andrew was in their boats casting their nets.  Jesus tells him to come and follow him, asking him to commit to service.  He told him he would make them fishers of men.  (Mark 1:16-17)

The third calling was in Luke 5:1-11.  Peter had been out fishing all  night casting his nets and he had pulled everything in and was ready to quit when Jesus told him to head back out and cast out his nets.  Keeping Peters personality in mind (not being a listener, but stubborn) replied back to him, "Master we have toiled all the night and have taken nothing, nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net."  Notice Jesus told him to let down all the nets, but Peter (and I can imagine him being a little grouchy and irritated from being up all night fishing) said he would let down THE NET.  ONE net!  After he let down his net they caught so many fish that their boat started to sink. Peter then fell at Jesus feet and called him LORD.  This was when Peter finally committed himself to Christ.

So today I decided was the day to move around my bedroom, box up a bunch of boxes for storage, get out the clutter, and I had plans to just work hard on my room!  My room is the catch all, if people are coming over everything gets put in my room, if the kids come in here so do their toys, if we don't have a place for things, guess where it ends up!  So it was time to take back my room!!  I started at 9am picking up all the stuff off the floor, then moving my bed to the other side, then the dresser, and then I had to put it all away.  About half way through I found myself looking around wondering if anyone would notice if I just left it that way and didn't finish!  lol  It was a disaster!!

During my cleaning session the kids were kinda doing their own thing.  PBS kids was on the TV, a couple of them were in Pumpkin's room playing, then they would go back to watching tv, the baby would wonder in my room and love on me then she would head back out.  Sweet-pea kept coming in  and I would just tell her to not touch things, then scoot her on out the door so I could get finished.  Around lunch time I got them lunch and they ate while I continued working on my room.  I just kept saying "I have got to get this done today!!"  Nap time came and I put the kids in their beds and told them to stay, and again I went back to cleaning and packing and putting things away.

Around 4:00 (7 hours into my project) the kids were again playing and romping around in their rooms and in walked Sweet-pea again.  She walked right up to me and said "mamma do you love me?"  At first I was taken back by what she said and was a little surprised and said, "Of course Sweet-pea, I love you!"  Then she looked at me again and said "MAMMA  do you love me?"  Again I said "yes baby I love you!"  Then again she repeated, "MAMMA DO YOU LOVE ME?"  at this point I was puzzled and changed my reply to "Honey, I love you with all my heart!!"  She said, "with all your heart!" and walked out!

I couldn't get this out of my head the rest of the day.  I kept thinking about when Jesus asked Peter if he loved him, in my head but then I'd just push it aside and thought, she was just being cute.  So tonight after the girls went to bed I did my school.  I was about to go to bed when I heard in my head "Mamma do you love me?"  I began to think about our life the last few months and how hectic it has been.  I've gotten in that mode again where I have a mission to get something done and  I do it and just kinda go through the motions of making dinner, and lunch, and changing a diaper then getting back to what needs done for the day while the kids are occupied.  But I kept thinking about Peter!!

In John 21:15-17 it says " When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, "Simon son of John, do you truly love me more than these?" "Yes, Lord," he said, "you know that I love you." Jesus said, "Feed my lambs."  Again Jesus said, "Simon son of John, do you truly love me?" He answered, "Yes, Lord, you know that I love you." Jesus said, "Take care of my sheep."  The third time he said to him, "Simon son of John, do you love me?" Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, "Do you love me?" He said, "Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you." Jesus said, "Feed my sheep."

The first time Jesus asked Peter "do you truly love me" he used the greek word "agapao" which is normally used to describe the type of love that God has for us, it's a unconditional love, a committed love.  But Peter replied  "Lord you know that I "phileo" you!"  Which is a brotherly love.  Peter was also referring to the fact that he had denied Jesus three times when he was crucified, so he probably was thinking  "what is he thinking asking me if I am capable of loving him this way look what I did!"  Again Jesus asks "Do you "agapao" me?"  And again Peter Responds "Yes Lord you know that I "phileo" you!"  then the last time he says "Peter do you "phileo" me?

Picturing this conversation I can see Peter feeling taken back by the question the first time, feeling a little shocked that he asked him that.  Then the second time I'm sure he was getting frustrated, and then finally when Jesus changed the way he said it Peter was beyond frustrated.  Looking back it took Peter three time to actually commit to following Jesus, three times he denied him, and three times he was told if you love me feed my lambs, take care of my sheep, feed my sheep.  If you love me you will obey my commandments!    GO, bring in the sheep, feed the sheep pastor the sheep!

When my dad was in the hospital an old friend came up to visit who had recently started a church.  He and his wife have five children as well, most in college.  I had a few minutes to visit with him and so I asked how the church was coming along.  He told me that it was doing great and they have a steady number, but it was on the smaller side.  He told me that God had really put on his heart that growing a church was the same as raising his children, he had to invest in the hearts of the people in his church the same way he had to invest in the hearts of those children.

So this evening when my baby looked at me and asked "Mamma do you love me?"  She was asking me if I was invested in her heart!  Will I lead her, fill her with God's word, and guide her along the right paths in her life?  I've been so convicted recently about parenting with a gentle spirit and when we discipline to discipline by address the problem in their hearts not the outward problems, so when she said to me what she said It just completely blew me away!  I get so busy sometimes and I don't realize that I just shoo them along, and I don't realize that I haven't sat down and snuggled with them today.  So while yes we should be a light to the world, we should bring in the sheep, fill them with God's word, and pastor them....we can't let our children get lost in the herd.  Sometimes things get so chaotic that we don't realize that they haven't had that mommy time or daddy time today.  Lead, pastor, and fill your children, their hearts are crying out for it...I know my children are.  Tomorrow we are going to have lots of snuggle time!!