Abounding and #173-191

Because of our traveling over the weekend, we visited another church in another town. The pastor of this church gave the platform to his wife to speak, and she spoke on the topic of mothers and mothering. I love this video clip she shared with the congregation:

If you’re a mom, maybe you could see yourself somewhere in her lyrics. If you’re not a mom, you’ve had a mom, and you may see her (or other mothers you have known) in this. I admit– I could identify with it– I saw myself, and my mom, too, in the video clip!

This song creatively highlights what some of our days sound like… and it left me wondering… do I sound like that more than I don’t? Like a mom moving her mouth fast and furious like the William Tell Overture, with all my “do this’s”, “do-that’s” and “no’s”? It’s a funny song, I love it, and there is truth in it. As a mom, I do have responsibilities, but I wonder if I’m sounding more like a Martha than I want to be. If life is moving fast, so are my words. At any given moment, as a multi-tasking mom, I can have numerous quote clouds orbiting above my head, as I quickly blurt out instructions this way and that!

I don’t want my kids to recall my admonitions of the daily tasks as the hallmark aspect of my mothering. I want them to remember grace, in the midst of all the to-do’s, lists, reminders, etc… amidst all the stuff of life. This humorous video clip makes me stop and reflect… wonder what I sound like. Hmmm. What will they remember? Am I speaking with enough grace?

The pastor’s wife yesterday also gave some encouragement from scripture. Here is one of the verses she mentioned, which talked about grace:

And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.  2 Corin. 9:8

I was thinking of the word “abound” — what does it mean to have grace abounding toward me?  Sounds like something I want. But what does it mean?

Out of curiosity (and for fun), I looked up “abound”  on dictionary.com and found a beautiful list of synonyms:

abundant     ample     bounteous     bountiful     copious

crawling with

cup runs over with

exuberant

filled

full

generous

heavy

lavish

liberal

luxuriant     mucho

no end of      overflowing

plate is full of     plenteous     plentiful     profuse     prolific     replete      rich

So much to glean from here. I also did a Google search for the Greek word from this passage. The Greek word for abound is  perisseuō  (περισσεύω). Here is the definition:

  1. to exceed a fixed number of measure-….. to be left over and above…to abound overflow…something falls to the lot of one in large measure…o extcel more than, exceed
  2. to make to abound
    1. to furnish one richly so that he has abundance
    2. to make abundant or excellent

(source:   http://www.searchgodsword.org)

“To furnish one richly so that he has abundance, to make abundant or excellent”—and to think that this much grace is what I am being “furnished” with in an exceeding amount is a breathtaking thought that fuels me for the day, for the tasks ahead. THAT much grace—straight from the God of all grace—to me!

Living in the mystery of this abounding grace, the pace of my mind can slow down, and hence my words can slow down, even in the midst of  a world that does not slow down its pace. Because He gives it to me in exceeding measure, grace is there for the spilling. I need not rush. I simply draw out and pull from the well. And might I find more graceful words instead of frantic, busy blurts, there, in that place?

I admit, it’s a place, a pace, and a vocabulary I’m still working on.  But, even in the hardest times of the journey, I’d rather be here, learning, than stuck in the whirlwind, not knowing how to stop and get off. God gives me a stepping-off point.

As the recipient of this kind of grace–  a fullness of mercy and an unseen beauty that covers every empty hole and fills to capacity, something unseen surrounding me and overflowing— means I can share out of the overflow of this grace, and unfurl a bit of this beauty to others around me. This is what God gives me, not only as a mom, but as His child, in any task, in any relationship. This is what He gives to each one of us, anywhere, no matter where God has us this day.

My list of thanks, #173-191:

173. God’s lavish grace abounding toward me and in me, in such abundance to be able to give to others

174. lovely words from a daughter on my birthday (today!)

175. thankful for another year, for God’s grace, focusing not on getting older, but more graceful

176. sweet Mother’s day gifts

177. red tulips on the verge of bloom

178. warmer days

179. first piano recital for the boys

180. substitute teaching one day last week

181. a great night of sleep in my own bed after 2 nights away of sleeping elsewhere

182. cinnamon sugar bagel for breakfast

183. friendships, on every level, but especially the ones that are deep enough to share the biggest and the smallest, the easiest and the hardest, the pains and the joys, and the best and worst of it all… a group that is smaller in number but richer in mutual grace

184. opportunities

185. dreams

186. chasing after dreams

187. the opportunity and gift of being a mom

188. talking with other moms, knowing that other moms out there share similar experiences

189. home educator conference…contemplating the next step of the journey

190. wanting to do too many things, things left still undone… gives me something to reach for, something to hope for, excitement for the future

191. a surprise gift when visiting a museum this weekend–the museum was offering free airplane rides for the kids! The kids had a chance to be co-pilot and help steer and fly the plane, a real two-seater plane– an amazing experience, totally unexpected.

gifts of love from young hands

Sharing today with Michelle:

And with Ann:

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6 thoughts on “Abounding and #173-191

  1. This was such a wonderful post today! I loved that word, “abound.” I will never forget an illustration of that word. Someone had a 1 cup measure. They took a five pound bag of flour and just kept on pouring out the flour into that measuring cup. It spilled all over, and kept on spilling into the bowl as she talked on and on. I never forgot that.
    But the Mother’s day gifts were priceless!!!!! Nothing better than those homemade, child-made flowers!!!!! Thank you so much for sharing all this today. I’ll be working on “abounding” this week, for sure!!!

    1. I love the illustration of abounding, with the flower spilling all over. That is a great way to show the overflow of God’s grace. Thank you for sharing that and for commenting!

  2. “And might I find more graceful words instead of frantic, busy blurts, there, in that place?”…drawing from His wellspring of Grace….beauty there…

    1. Yes, I love that “beauty in that wellpsring”…a deep place to draw from, and I’m learning how to dip and drink… thank you, Connie, for your comment.

  3. I love how you delved so deeply into the word abound and what it means as it relates to God’s grace for us. And that list of synonyms — like poetry itself!

    So glad you linked up…and your gratitude list is precious (love the paper flowers and vase especially!).

    1. It’s an amazing thought to think of God’s grace abounding to us, it’s a great word. Thanks for the community you offer– enjoyed linking up with you.

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