Finding Quiet Time- Ann Voskamp

Always God: Nurturing Relationship with God in the midst of preschoolers

I live in a house with 1 baby, 2 preschoolers, 2 stretching children, 1 preteen, one gentle husband, and One Great and Glorious God. We live, and laugh, and love within these four walls…in the presence of Him Who knows no boundaries.

Practicing the Presence of God…

Children crawl up on couches, under blankets, unto laps for our Love-letter Time: each reading child reads their own volume of God’s love letter while I read aloud my day’s reading from the One Year Bible to the preschoolers. “David did what, Mama? “ “Jesus really loved us, didn’t he?” Together, we hear Him speak through His Word to our hearts. I scratch my reciprocating love notes in my prayer journal while littles copy down verses, coloring their remembrances of Love-Letter Time.

Children dig in the sandbox while I hang out my clothesline prayers: thank you for the legs that fill these pants, the arms that grace this shirt, the baby that sleeps in these pajamas.

I stir, children pour, I dice, children stir. We sing: “I love you, Lord. And I lift my voice, to worship You….”

We gather legos and blocks and order tractors and trains. Ora et Labora. This work is our prayer to You, Lord, our reasonable act of service, our worship and gift to the Giver of all.

I ring the dinner bell and children clamor around the table and steaming plates. We recite memory verses between bitefulls. Dear husband closes each of our three meals with Scripture reading, inviting one of the children to conclude with a prayer to the God of all. As we rise to clatter off the dishes and clean the kitchen counters, together we join our voices in a hymn of the faith, the song of praise we are learning that week.

Always Glory, Always Praise

In the midst of preschoolers, we do not package up the Prince of Peace, only to take Him down in fleeting moments of quiet… but we invite Him to be the center of our milieu, the axis of our days, the Son around which we all—babies, preschoolers, Mamas, and Papas, children and teens—revolve. His word is not confined only to a quiet time for “they are not just idle words for you—they are your life.”( Deuteronomy 32:47) In the midst of diapers and dishes, crayons and construction paper, life is our liturgy, life is our communing time with the Lover of our Souls.

As Eugene Peterson paraphrases Romans 11:36:

Everything comes from him;
Everything happens through him;
Everything ends up in him.
Always glory! Always praise!
Yes. Yes. Yes.”

Did you enjoy Ann's beautiful writing?  You can find more of her wonderful, meandering thoughts on her blog.