Annoyances Here, There, Everywhere!

Annoyances Here, There, Everywhere! Visionary Womanhood

There’s been a lot of chaos in my home lately. A lot of interruptions. A lot of loud voices. A lot of questions. A lot of (different) answers with a lot of subsequent arguing.

There’s been a lot of dirty clothes on dirty floors. A lot of laundry. A lot of unmade beds and unclean rooms. A lot of toys. A lot of toys. A lot of toys. Everywhere.

There’s been a lot of dirty diapers. A lot of potty training gone bad. A lot of wet beds. A lot of laundry. A lot of baths.

There’s been a lot of crumbs. A lot of food all over a lot of counter tops and a lot of floors and a lot of faces and even a few walls.

There’s been a lot of complaining. A lot of whining and screaming and fussing and bawling. A lot of bemoaning. A lot of protesting.

I used to be a spiritual giant—back in my younger, single days when I lived with my two best friends in a nice quiet apartment. Where did that holy girl go? What would she have done with this daily provocation from ten million angles?

These annoyances are “intruders,” writes Fenelon in his Dialogues. I love what he has to say about them:

The intruder whom God sends us serves to thwart our will, upset our plans, to make us crave more earnestly for silence and recollection, to teach us to sit loose to our own arrangements, our rest, our ease, our taste; to bend our will to that of others, to humble ourselves when impatience overcomes us under these annoyances, and to kindle in our hearts a greater thirst for God, even while He seems to be forsaking us because we are so disturbed.

Think about Jesus in the chaos of the crowds pressing in on him, shouting, begging, arguing, whining, and pushing. Jesus kept His cool. How did He do that?

Focused faith. He focused on what was true—and He trusted His Father to only give Him what He could bear.

Keep then to this simple rule: seek not temporary fulfillments, but bear in peace all that God sends you, against your will, to disturb you. What a delusion! We seek God afar off, in projects perhaps altogether unattainable, and we do not consider that we possess Him now in the midst of the confusion, by the exercise of simple faith, provided we bear humbly and bravely the annoyances which come from others, and our own imperfections.

Natalie Klejwa is a Wemmick, loved by the Woodcarver, wife of 22 years to Joe, and mother to 9 Wemmicks ages 2-20. She is a business owner (Apple Valley Natural Soap), founder and administrator of the Visionary Womanhood blog, publisher and contributing author of Three Decades of Fertility, You Can Do it Too! 25 Families Share Their Stories, and The Heart of Simplicity: Foundations for Christian Homemaking.

You can hear her being interviewed on Kevin Swanson's Generations with Vision radio program.

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11 thoughts on “Annoyances Here, There, Everywhere!

  1. That’s good! It’s oh, so easy to be godly (or to think we are) when life doesn’t intrude! It’s in the “down and dirty” where the most important growth is done, and the character is shown.
    I had a pastor who would say, “If you want to know what’s inside a vessel, jostle it and see what spills out.”
    I’m so thankful (well, in my more spiritual moments, anyway!) that my Father is going to keep jostling my vessel until all that spills out is sweetness!

  2. Precious and timely words. We are battling a tummy bug, and a cold/flu, “morning” sickness with blessing number 8, and I am weary and downcast with all of my annoyances. We aren’t even 2 weeks into daddy’s deployment. But- this is a huge time of growing. Especially for my two oldest 14 & 12, and even more so for me. What can I do but humble myself and cry out for His strength?!

  3. All of us mamas in the trenches of daily sanctification can so relate…thank you for sharing! Ann Voskamp says, “when you get upset you upset what’s really in you.” Ouch. We are all works in progress in The Lord, and I am especially working on this one!

  4. Bless you, Natalie! Please never stop writing! This (and so many other things you write) helped my feeble wemick brain grasp God’s truth. Thank you!