It wasn’t the happiest of realisations when I noticed the similarity this week between some of my mothering behaviours and those of the tax collectors in the Bible. On Sunday I was found, just like a tax collector, demanding my dues, looking to collect what I thought I was owed and, perhaps like tax collectors in Jesus’ time, looking to collect a little more than I was owed (if indeed I can be said to be owed anything at all). A little more obedience, good behaviour, and help. Really, these are graces aren’t they? Not dues. Graces freely given, and to be welcomed with open arms and smiles, with gratitude and love, but not ever demanded or expected as dues.
So, Sunday; it wasn’t a pretty sight.
After lunch, we brought out our Lent book, and one of the boys asked if he could read. Yes, I said, that would be lovely, so nice to be able to give my whole mind and heart over to listening. And then I saw what the passage was. It was just what I needed. Words that spoke right into my situation. Words that lifted me away from self pity and a sense of failure, and lifted my eyes up to where they needed to be focussed.
These were words I had written one evening a month ago; and then quickly moved on to the next passage. I hadn’t dwelt on them. I hadn’t realised just how much I needed them.
It’s not one of the lent passages I had been planning to share on the blog. Today I thought I’d share a piece I’d spent a little longer writing, and thought was a *clever* retelling of the tale of the man lowered through the roof. But then I heard these words, read out to me so beautifully. And I sat in awe of the God who inspired them, who placed them on just this day in the book, and who knew that I would be the one who most needed to hear them.
I thought perhaps there might be one more person who needs these same words this week. And so today’s post is a recording about the tax collector. The tax collector I saw in the mirror on Sunday. The tax collector who Jesus loves.