When Thou Liest Down…

Posted By on July 17, 2011

And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. Deuteronomy 6:6,7

These beautiful words are a powerful command to Christian parents. Often used–and rightly so–as an example of the discipleship model of homeschooling and the need to teach our children the ways of the Lord from sun up to sun down, these verses encouraged me in a whole new way the other day.

Over the past four years I have been battling severe adrenal fatigue. At times I gain the upper hand and can almost pretend I’ve conquered the beast, but it is a constant exhausting struggle. Every now and then the Monster attacks with renewed vigor, knocks me off my feet and cripples me for a time.  Over the past several months I’ve been on the losing end of the battle and have once again hit the point where I’m spending most of my days in bed, on the couch, in my faithful recliner or a mixture of the three.

Along with the battle of physical fatigue comes the battle against discouragement. The other day I was laying in bed staring at my boring ceiling and feeling like a useless blob wth thoughts along these lines running through my mind: “I’m missing even more precious time mothering my little ones, the household is once again turned upside down, Steve is bearing a huge burden and I don’t even feel like reading, memorizing Scripture, watching Jane Austen films, organizing my recipes or otherwise utilizing all this lovely free time. Nope, all I can do is lay and stare. How in the world can I be of any use to the Lord when I can’t even get out of bed?”

The Lord so graciously brought Deuteronomy 6:6,7 to mind and drew my attention to the words “when thou liest down”.  Aha! The light of Truth broke through my dark discouragement as the Lord reminded me again that no matter how hard things are, I still  need to be obedient to Him and I still have a responsibility to all the little eyes watching me. I can certainly still love the Lord with all my “heart, soul and strength” even when I am in the “liest down” category and I can still teach my children to do so too.

Whether I am up reading books, baking cookies and walking by the way with my children or whether I am in bed unable to sit up and do a thing, the example I am setting for them will leave a strong impression one way or the other. Through all these difficult days the hearts, minds and souls of my little ones are being trained and formed. They are not on “pause” just because I can’t mother them the way I want to. They will either learn to doubt the Lord or they will learn to trust Him.

If I can do nothing more than lay in bed I can do it with a good attitude and  a smile for them when they come in the room. I can still provide a happy atmosphere in the home.  I can avoid complaining, I can praise them for the extra work they have to do while Mommy is sick, I can encourage them to be a help to Daddy with a good attitude, I can admire the cards they bring me, I can speak to them kindly. I can point them to the faithfulness of our Heavenly Father and the lessons we are learning through this trial.  I can glorify God and point my children to Him by the way I conduct myself in times of trial and adversity. I can walk with the Lord even when my body can barely move–and it is absolutely imperative that I do so.

I hope these thoughts will encourage you as they have me. As mothers, we have little eternal souls that we are responsible for no matter what our situation in life is like.  When things are going well we need to point our children to the Lord. When times are hard we need to point our children to the Lord. May we be faithful to love our great God with all our “heart, soul and strength” and to teach this love for Him and the truth of His Holy Word diligently to our children when we sit down–be it to read them a book or because we are just to weak to stand; when we walk along the way–whether our steps are strong or faltering; when we lie down–whether it be in green pastures or in absolute weariness; and when we rise up–as we climb the Hill Difficulty, or on wings like eagles.

About The Author

Jennifer McBride is the blessed wife to Steve and the mother of 8 children, ages 13-2. She is also the editor of the book "Queen of the Home" - currently being revised and updated. In her sparest of spare moments she operates www.noblewomanhood.com, a website dedicated to proclaiming the honor, nobility and power of Biblical womanhood.


14 Responses to “When Thou Liest Down…”

  1. […] before the day begins” who are even more soul weary than they are physically weary, who are walking through trial while caring for the needs of their families, who are just plain wiped out. Keep fighting the good fight; remember  in the midst of the […]

  2. Roser says:

    Thank you!!! I feel so less alone now. Praying for you!

  3. Linda T says:

    One of the best meditations I’ve read on this topic! I’ll be passing this one along.

  4. Sal says:

    Thank you, Jennifer, for the timely encouragement and lovely meditation.
    This is helping me, not in a health-related issue, but one of keeping a sweet spirit through any trial.
    Prayers for your recovery.

  5. Honey says:

    Thanks so much for this article. It is a hard thing to do, getting “used” to having a health problem. Finding the limitations “normal”. I know it has been for me. Thanks so much for sharing.

  6. Cindy says:

    Thank you for your inspiring article. I suffer from a chronic autoimmune disease and am currently down with a complication from the same flu that my family has well recovered from already. I have been feeling very much like the useless blob you described. I start to doubt I can give my family anything and that gets very depressing. Thank you for reminding me that I can use this time for God. I pray that you are helped as you have helped others.

  7. Jill says:

    Very timely. I’ve been on moderate bed rest due to expecting twins and have fallen into the “poor me’s” feeling badly that my husband has so much on him right now. This is a great encouragement to have a more positive attitude and to take advantage of “teaching time”, especially if I end up on complete bed rest. Thank you.
    I have struggled with adrenal fatigue within the past three years as well and have taken supplements to correct that. I had found an integrated doctor that ran tests to find out that I was low in B, D, and that I was also extremely anemic. I don’t know if that would help you, but I just thought I would share. I will be praying for you. Thanks for the encouragement!

  8. Lisa Knight says:

    This is wonderful, Jennifer. I have Lupus, and have come to the point where, instead of asking “Why me?”, I ask, “Why not me?”….knowing that “all things work together for good to them that love God..”


  9. Michelle says:

    Oh I have been there! Just last week I was hit with a sickness that kept me in the bed all week! I was emotionally drained, cranky and tired. I did not have the strength to teach my children or care for them like I would if I were well. It was very hard for me considering I’ve never been sick like that before. I wish I had read this last week but I will keep it in mind for next time 😉 I am all better now and am thankful for my good health :) I was able to teach my children today and now I’m cleaning 😉 I hope your health improves and you get your strength back :)

  10. Lovely. Thank you for sharing your heart. Many women facing illness and/or battling depression, anxiety, etc…needed to hear these words.

  11. Elizabeth says:

    Thank you for your encouraging post. I will be keeping you in my prayers. I, too, am going through adrenal fatigue and anemia. I am wondering if you’ve read the book or gone to the website: Stop The Thyroid Madness.? There are some wonderful treatment solutions for adrenal fatigue. Also, on yahoo groups, there is a support group for those with adrenal fatigue called naturalthyroidadrenals. I pray that you will have a more permanent healing, soon.
    If you have any questions, please please don’t hesitate to contact me at my email address. I’d be honored to try to help you, sister.
    In Christ,

  12. PlainJane says:

    What an encouraging post Jennifer. I was in tears too. Your ability to encourage us/me at this time in your life takes my breath away. I am including you right now on my prayer list — I pray that your health and energy will be restored fully and quickly. Thank you for these lovely words!

    Blessings to you and yours.

  13. Amy says:

    Thank you for this encouragement! I was getting teary-eyed as I read this. I find it inspiring that you are able to take what must be a difficult situation and use it to point others to the Lord.


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