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The Water’s Fine

That’s the thing about motherhood: Your body may never go back to the way it was, but that doesn’t mean you can’t be comfortable in your own skin.

Salina Beasley



On behalf of the Senior Water Aerobics class, welcome. You’ll get to know the ladies in time, but from the looks of that bump, it doesn’t appear that you have all that much time. Good heavens, when are you due? Nine more weeks? Are you carrying twins? No? Are you sure? Wow, that is one. Big. Baby. God bless you. Go easy, Honey. We don’t want you to overdo it and end up going into labor in the pool – Heaven help us all.

I’m Ana. How are you? Just back from surgery. Doc said I gotta keep moving if I want to stay off the meds. Oh Honey, my knees. My hips. Take it easy. You don’t want to overdo it and end up going into labor in the pool. How long did you say you had to go, bless your heart? Anyway, my ortho says I gotta keep moving if I’m going to stay off the meds and don’t-you-know I’ve gone from a snug size 16 to a comfortable size 12, thank you. Haven’t lost the weight though. Can you believe that? Oh well. Gotta stay afloat somehow, right? Speaking of weight, boy, I bet you are tired of carrying around that watermelon. If I were you, I’d stay in the water ’til your due. When are you due again? Heaven help you, 9 weeks? Take it easy. The water is cold today.


Welcome back! How’s that baby? Have you gotten bigger since last week? There is no way you are going to make it another 8 weeks, Honey. Oh, and take it easy. The water is cold again today.

You looked startled by me in the shower stall this morning. Forgive me. I forget that those shower curtains are there for people who still want privacy. The ladies and I aren’t all that into modesty anymore. We shed our inhibitions with our strawberry two pieces shortly after Watergate. But in case you didn’t notice, we’re all shaped the same – short and round. That’s what happens when you get to be our age. Well, in your case, round is true enough. But don’t worry. You’ll lose the weight nursing, Lord willing.

I heard Janice say she thought you were a cute pregnant lady, but the look on your face said that you feel anything but cute. You’re probably thinking about the extra 30 pounds you’re carrying and wondering if you will ever feel cute again. Honey, that’s the thing about motherhood: Your body may never go back to the way it was, but that doesn’t mean you can’t be comfortable in your own skin. Take it from me. You will blink and that baby will be in his mid-50’s with grown children of his own. Hopefully, you will look in the mirror and rather than curse the hips that once cooperated in a size 4, you will be grateful that those same hips served as the entryway to new life. You won’t remember the pain, thank God.

When you look at your chest, rather than shame in its foresaken perkiness, you will remember the moment the doctor laid your new baby boy on it and you sighed with relief that the pain was finally over and here is your reward. A mother never forgets that smell. Am I right, Janice?

You will remember the night … after night after night, after … you thought you couldn’t stay awake another moment longer to nurse the little life-sucker, but eventually, he weans himself and next thing you know, you are sneaking into his room in the middle of the night stroking his velvety head wishing he would wake up and beg you to nurse him just one more time.

Don’t even get me started about my knees. That’s right. My knees. Did you know I’ve had two knee surgeries? My ortho says I gotta keep moving if I’m going to stay off the meds. There was a time when I had sworn off all shorts and skirts that showed off my knees. Heaven forbid I was caught dead in a swimsuit. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against knees, but my varicose veins were so bad after my pregnancies, my legs looked like they had their own GPS system. When my son was a teenager and he was trying to find himself or whatever-they-call-it … what are they calling it, Janice? He was getting into all sort of trouble – choosing the wrong friends. His grades were slipping. He got involved with drugs. I spent more time on my knees praying and begging God to protect my baby and to bring him home when I had no idea where he was or if he would ever come home again. He eventually did, thank God. But sometime after my second surgery … I had two surgeries, did you know? After my second one, I got over my thing with knees. Now every time I look down at my GPS knees, I remember those nights that I spent on them praying that my boy would come home.

Like I said, me and the ladies aren’t all that concerned with modesty anymore, so if you see more than you signed up for with your gym membership, it’s because we aren’t competing in any beauty pageants any time soon. Who are we kidding? If you stick around, you’ll hear all the stories that our wrinkles, sags, and stitches have to tell.

Don’t be scared. Please come back.


We missed you last week. Mary Kay made it through surgery and Pat’s shoulder is stiff so she’s taking it easy today. We thought you might have gone into labor. Me and the ladies are taking bets on whether you will make it another 6 weeks, I tell you. We don’t expect you to come back to water aerobics after the baby’s born. You’ll be so concerned about getting back in shape that you’ll probably join one of those … what are they called, Janice? Booty camps? Good luck with that.

I can tell by that tortured look on your face you are worried you might stay pregnant forever. You think the next 6 weeks will be the longest 6 weeks of your life. But you know what they say: The older you get, the faster time flies. Next thing you know, that boy will be asking you if he can borrow the car, and soon after his kids will be calling you, “Grandma.” I don’t expect you to believe me. You are still so young, and time is still limping along for you. You haven’t had to bury your parents or a spouse yet. Your knees are far from needing surgery. You are decades away from violating other people’s privacy in the locker room shower stalls. But I hope that one day you will look back and remember these few weeks we shared in the water with nothing but a couple of foam noodles to keep us afloat. In the meantime, good luck in Booty Camp.

Be sure to stay in touch and let us know when you have that baby. The ladies’ luncheon is on Tuesdays and you are always welcome to join. I gorged myself last week in the chicken salad. It’s no wonder the weight isn’t coming off. I’m going to stay for the next class.

It’s okay. The water is warm today.

Salina is a worship leader/songwriter with her husband, Clark. The two spent the early years of their marriage touring with Grammy-Award winning worship leader/songwriter, Matt Redman. They are now living in Atlanta, Georgia, where they enjoy leading worship for their local church. Salina is also a freelance writer and mother of two children. You can follow Salina on twitter @salinabeasley.

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When Doing Justly, Loving Mercy, and Walking Humbly Stand at Odds

If your compassion far exceeds your capacity, here’s one way you can be sure to do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly.



One of my life verses is Micah 6:8, “He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?”

It is one of my favorite verses because my heart has been so moved by the love Jesus has for me and the sacrifice He made for me that I am grateful to have a way to express my gratitude through acts of justice and mercy while walking humbly with God.

I have found at times, however, the call to do justice and love mercy come in conflict with the call to walk humbly with God. For me, one of the ways to walk humbly with God is to recognize my limitations. I have to put skin to the fact that I am not God which means saying, “no” to ministry requests. It means going to sleep when I could be spending time advocating for the harrowed and helpless in the world. It means limited seats at my table, limited funds in my bank account, and limited energy in my body cannot be ignored but respected and adhered to.

This is hard for me at times, especially when I scroll my Facebook feed and see friends who are caring for their really sick children, spouse, or other family member all while millions of refugees flee war torn countries and babies are slaughtered by the hundreds each day in our country through the abortion industry.

As I scroll, I receive texts about one family member’s surgery gone wrong and another family member announcing a new baby is on the way. I have in mind my neighbor who has inpatient surgery scheduled this week and another neighbor who is trying to hold down a full-time job, care for twins all while battling profound “morning” sickness.

Folks at church are fighting for their lives in physical and spiritual ways, and strangers who pass me on the road are clearly battling something as demonstrated by their impatient honking because I won’t take a right turn on red. I want to meet the needs of all; I want to do justice and love mercy, but I’m daily confronted by the fact that I am so limited.

What am I to do when doing justly and/or loving mercy seem to come in conflict with walking humbly with my God?

God keeps bringing me to this answer: prayer.

God invites us to cast our cares before Him because He cares for us.
God tells us to be anxious for nothing BUT WITH PRAYER present our requests before Him.
God commands us to pray without ceasing.

And, when I walk humbly with God, I see the immense kindness in His command.
He gives us a way to do justly, love mercy WHILE walking humbly with Him.
It is by praying without ceasing.

I cannot take a meal or give money to every sick person or family I know. I cannot extend kindness to all my neighbors all at the same time they’re in need nor conjure up sustainable solutions for the refugee crisis and contact all the necessary world powers to make it happen.

I cannot heal all, but I know the Healer.

I cannot provide for all the needs, but I know the Provider.

I cannot rescue everyone in need, but I know the Rescuer.

I cannot comfort all the broken, but I know the Comforter.

I cannot speak peace over every situation, but I know the Prince of Peace.

I cannot be all to all, but I can go to the Great I Am through prayer, lay all the people, problems and pleas for help before the Omniscient and Omnipresent God of all Creation.

I can do this through prayer.

Recently, via an Instagram contest of all things, I came upon A–Z prayer cards designed by blogger/author/speaker, Amelia Rhodes. It is a simple concept packed with a powerful prayer punch. It has served me personally in this tension of wanting to do far more than I practically can do. It provides prayer prompts starting with each letter of the alphabet along with a scripture that coincides with the prayer focus. It ranges from Adoption to a creative “Zero Prejudice” for the letter “Z.”

The cards are well thought out, color printed on sturdy cardstock with blank lines for the user to write in the names of people and/or organizations that are personal to them.

If, like me, your compassion far exceeds your capacity, pick up a set of these prayer cards and unload your burdens onto a God whose competence matches His kindness, both boundless.

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Facing Our Fears in Motherhood

Do you have fears tied to motherhood? If so, here’s encouragement for you.



“Are you scared?”

I was taken aback by his question. Scared? Of what?

“Of anything,” he answered.

I had just shared my due date with a new class of trainees.

“He has three boys,” another new hire volunteered. So fear is to be expected, I reasoned. I’m just about to face the most frightening experience in my life.

Of course I was scared.

I was scared…

  • I’ll lose my temper.
  • I’ll whine about sleepless nights.
  • I’ll breastfeed too often or not often enough.
  • I’ll leave piles of unfolded onesies in the middle of the nursery floor because I’m too tired (or lazy?) to fold teeny-tiny baby clothes for the upteenth time.
  • I’ll go with disposable diapers when the better choice would be cloth.
  • I’ll work too many long hours at the office and miss precious moments with her.
  • I’ll sign her up for too many activities and push her to become Miss Achieve-It-All.
  • I’ll pass on to her my ugly pride, self-righteousness, and perfectionism like a dreadful contagious disease.
  • I’ll miss countless little joys in life while pursuing worthless dreams.

Facing Our Fears in MotherhoodIn short… I was afraid I was going to fail miserably as a parent.

And now, holding my second-born daughter in my arms, thinking back on that brief exchange just a few years ago, I realize those fears were well-founded. I’ve failed many times. I’ve lost my temper. I’ve raised my voice. I’ve worked too much and played too little. I’ve seen my own sinfulness reflected in my daughter.

Yes, I’ve failed, but over and above it all, God’s grace has covered my parenting imperfections and made me run to the cross day after day. The writer of Proverbs puts it this way:

Whoever fears the LORD has a secure fortress, and for their children it will be a refuge.
Proverbs 14:26

When it comes to fears, we have two choices: Will we fear the unknown or will we fear the Lord? Will we allow the uncertain to grip us in its clutch or will we turn to God’s Truth to set us free?

Scared? Oh yeah. There was so much to be scared of that day. And even now, if I’m completely honest, there are still fears nibbling at the edges of my consciousness. Fear that we won’t outgrow the temper tantrums. Fear that the two girls won’t get along. Fear that I’ll mess them up and cause them interminable hours on a psychologist’s couch.

I’m sure you have fears, too.

But rather than allow those fears to consume and paralyze us, we can take them to the Lord, acknowledging His sovereignty over our parenting, pleading His grace over our mistakes, and entrusting His provision over their futures. He is not only able to handle it all — He is far more capable to be trusted with it all.

If I say one thing to that frightened 9-month-pregnant me standing in that room years ago, I would say this: Don’t let fear rob today’s joy with tomorrow’s unknowns. Each day has enough worries of its own (Matthew 6:34).

Instead, let us keep seeking God, running to Him as our secure fortress and resting in the knowledge that He will care for us and our children one day at a time.

What are you scared of today? Name your fears and bring them to the Lord, allowing Him to replace them with His peace that passes all understanding.

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He Gives Shade To The Weary

If anxiety is a struggle for you right now, remember that He gives shade to the weary.



Do you ever have those moments of fear because you don’t know what lies ahead? When do those thoughts tend to happen to you?

For me, most of those thoughts happen when I lay my head down to sleep at night. The vulnerability comes forth every time. That’s what happened the other night to me. I shut my eyes and immediately anxiety welled up inside me.

What if we don’t succeed in this new venture? What if we have to move? What if we can’t pay our bills?

I laid there with the covers drawn tight over my head (I still think that I am safer if the covers are over my head), praying scripture over my anxious heart. Assuring myself that God sees me and that He cares.

In the morning, I turned to Isaiah 41, specifically verses 10-20.

“Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” (Isaiah 41:10, NASB)

Yesterday, the “what if’s” piled up as I anxiously looked about me. My daughter needs tutoring, however at this point in life, tutoring feels like a luxury we can’t afford. So I listed some items online to sell hoping to make just enough to cover the tutoring. I’m buying groceries on a Visa reward card. I’m holding my breath until the next paycheck comes. But what did God speak over me: Do not fear. Do not look anxiously about you.

“For I am the Lord your God, who upholds your right hand, Who says to you, ‘Do not fear, I will help you.’ Do not fear, you worm Jacob, you men of Israel; I will help you,” declares the Lord, “and your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel.” (Isaiah 41:13-14 NASB)

Why shouldn’t I be anxious? Because God will hold me up. God will help me. When I first read the word “worm” as a description, I took it as a slam against Israel. Like, gesh, God. What animal does He relate me to? But through further study, He calls them a worm because worms are helpless. They are viewed as insignificant, despised and weak. God will help me — seemingly insignificant, helpless me — because He is my Redeemer. He is my go’el — my next of kin. The Redeemer is the one who provides for all my needs. Rent. Car payment. Credit card bill. Gas. Food. Clothes. Debt. God will redeem.

He Gives Shade to the Weary

“Behold, I have made you a new, sharp threshing sledge with double edges; You will thresh the mountains and pulverize them, And will make the hills like chaff. You will winnow them, and the wind will carry them away, And the storm will scatter them; But you will rejoice in the Lord, You will glory in the Holy One of Israel.” (Isaiah 41:15-16 NASB).

God is transforming me from a helpless one to a powerful one. The description of that type of threshing sledge is like a modern day earth mover. Powerful. Strong. Immovable.

“The afflicted and needy are seeking water, but there is none, And their tongue is parched with thirst; I, the Lord, will answer them Myself, As the God of Israel I will not forsake them.” (Isaiah 41:17, NASB)

He will come to our rescue. God, Himself, will answer you and me. Can you hear how personal that sounds? Have you ever pleaded with someone important whether your boss, public figure, or even a parent, and they responded to the need themselves? You expected for them to send their assistant, but instead they — the most important one — responded to you.

“I will open rivers on the bare heights And springs in the midst of the valleys; I will make the wilderness a pool of water And the dry land fountains of water. I will put the cedar in the wilderness, The acacia and the myrtle and the olive tree; I will place the juniper in the desert Together with the box tree and the cypress.” (Isaiah 41:18-19, NASB)

This passage describes the wilderness-like times in life. You are barren. You are thirsty. You are hot. You are in need. God will provide what you need. God will quench your thirst. He will provide shade when you are weary. During those times, God can provide in creative, innovative ways. He can provide something out of nothing. Doesn’t that give you great hope? Even when you can’t answer how He will do it, He is creative enough to figure it out even when the odds are stacked against you.

“That they may see and recognize, And consider and gain insight as well, That the hand of the Lord has done this, And the Holy One of Israel has created it.” (Isaiah 41:20 NASB).

God will do all of this so that His glory will be put on display. People — including yourself — will see that He is powerful.

So you can see how after a night of wrestling with fear and anxiety, reading this was like shade and water for my soul. God is a god who sees. And God is a god who acts on your behalf.

What do you need His help with today? What are you fearful about today? What keeps you awake at night? Where do you need some shade?

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The Water’s Fine

by Salina Beasley time to read: 5 min