My “year of Motherhood” has been somewhat inspired by a blogger that writes for us women and moms inspiring us to be all that we were created to be. Kat from Inspired to Action has such wisdom in her words, and I hope to meet her face to face one day and not just through email and twitter. I asked her to share with my readers about her challenge at realizing she wanted to give it all to motherhood. Enjoy!
The Payoff Is Worth The Price
I used to be a soccer mom, but not the normal kind.
When our girls were little, my husband came home with a flyer about a women's soccer league and even though I had never played and had no idea how to play soccer I knew it involved running around a lot and kicking things…so I signed up.
It was so fun. About halfway through the season, I thought I was getting the hang of it and in one particular game, one of my teammates was really struggling on defense. The girl she was guarding was faster than she was and all through the game I kept having to run over to that part of the field to help out.
PLAY YOUR POSITION
Finally, I went to the coach and, not so humbly, suggested that since I was kinda fast (Yep, I said that. Not my finest moment.), maybe I should take her spot.
He smiled, looked at me kindly and said, “Thanks, but I really need someone there who will play their position and not run off and chase after the ball constantly.”
Well, that was embarrassing.
It was really humbling at the time, but it stuck with me as an incredible life lesson.
LAY IT DOWN
Shortly thereafter, we were expecting our third child, and at the time I did freelance web development work, wrote a couple blogs, played soccer, led a small group at our church and had various other responsibilities in addition to taking care of my two girls.
But I felt strongly that God wanted me to “play my position.” To lay down all the other things I was doing and fully embrace my role as a mom. So I stepped back from those other commitments and began to focus on being the best mom I could be. It was hard. I gravitate towards business and grownup-y things. Kids? Not so much. I never even knew my mom, so I was stepping into completely unchartered territory. I didn't know what it was like to be a daughter, so how could I begin to be a mom?
(Note: This isn't a post about working outside the home or not. Goodness knows Jamie's had that discussion one or a million times. But it *is* about the power of fully embracing whatever position we are in and letting God show His beautiful strength in our weakness.)
FOR MY KIDS NOT TO MY KIDS
A few months later, I hit a low point. It had been a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. And I was sure I was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad mom. I felt like I was completely failing.
After I'd finally gotten all the kids to bed, I sat down and went straight to the ugly cry, I thought, “Lord?! What am I doing? I was an awful mom today. My kids are going to need years of therapy because of my grump-o-matic attitude today. Help me…!”
Honestly, I knew what I needed to do before my prayer even ended. I knew, but I wasn't excited about it. I needed to get up earlier and spend time with Him in the morning like I used to.
I didn't really want to do it. I'd given up so much (or so I thought) for motherhood. I didn't want to give up the little sleep I got, too.
Because when you're a mom of little ones, things that you never dreamed would be optional, become optional. Like bathing. And eating hot food. And for me, my quiet time had gone by the wayside too in those early years of sleep deprived survival.
But I knew that it was time to start getting up FOR my kids instead of TO my kids. And so I did. Cue the spot light and angelic chorus. That was the start of a truly consistent, life giving morning habit of reading my Bible, praying, focusing on Him, and allowing Him to order my heart and my day.
And out of that time, out of the overflow of His word and His grace, He began transforming me. I slowly developed a newfound passion for motherhood. I saw through my children's eyes like never before. I had so much more vision for who they were and who they could become. It had a fantastic impact on my attitude, my patience level and my heart for my family…
The payoff was well worth the price.
You will never wish you'd spent more time on Facebook reading about your number three best friend from third grade. You'll never wish you'd watched more reality show marathons. And you'll never wish you'd spent more late nights doing unimportant things.
You'll never regret the time you spend in prayer for your children. You'll never regret giving God more of your heart so He can mend it. You'll never regret exchanging a late night of nothing for an early morning of everything.
Each day is a blank canvas, give Him the first opportunity to paint His truth on you. He chose you for your children. So let's get up FOR our kids and not TO our kids. In those early morning hours, He will smooth out your rough edges, heal the broken places and make you into the mom you (and He) always dreamed you'd be. He called you to it, He will be faithful to do it. (1 Thess 5:24)