recently i had one of those days where my to-do list consisted of six different super-quick errands. seems simple enough to most people. before kids you could knock them all out in less than an hour and go about your day. but with kids, forget about it. you dread the outing for two days and put it off until you have no more food or toothpaste and your husband is wondering about the dry-cleaning and the alterations.
when you have to strap and unstrap three kids into their carseats for six different super-quick errands, it's a whole new kind of monster. it takes longer to get them in and out of the car than the amount of time we actually spend inside the post office, or the dry cleaner, or the bank. multiply that by six and we're all going crazy.
truly, there needs to be a drive-through dry cleaner, drive through full-service post office window, drive through banking (not just ATM but actually denominations-other-than-twenty banking), and a drive-up pre-order Target service would be pretty much the best thing ever. because by the time i've gotten the kids dressed and fed and ready to go out the door it's lunchtime. or naptime. or meltdown time. simple errands are just plain harder.
so instead of piling the kids in for that disaster, my mom took them to the children's museums and i embarked on the errands by myself. i knocked them out in record time and came home to package up 12 hoop orders and get them labeled and ready for shipping. i marveled at how much i was able to accomplish without any kids. i marveled at the limitations that they place on me.
this season of life is hard. mostly because i am the only one who can meet everyone's needs. and you know they all occur at once and each one is as pertinent as the other. i do not typically embrace this season. unfortunately, that's just the truth. when there's nothing on the agenda, i enjoy it. but when there are things to get done, i grumble and wish it away.
i've written before about how sometimes, deep down where i don't want to admit it, i feel like having three little kids and making three meals a day, and cleaning up three meals a day, and always reorganizing the toys and nursing and naptimes and meltdowns... like all of that is holding me back from what God really wants me to do. i know it's crazy when i say it loud so i rarely ever do.
the thing is i know that this is what God really wants me to do. the other stuff can fit in where it may and the mundane parts of motherhood do not define me. He does. He has given these beautiful blessings to me and asked me to steward them, with my specific talents and abilities, with my strengths. He purposed these children to grow up in my household, whatever that looks like, because He made me and He knows. even when most days i feel very overwhelmed by the workload, and like i'll never be the mother i dreamed i would be, He knows.
a friend from church posted an article the other day. i clicked over and read, and then watched the video (embedded below) and it all just clicked. "it" has clicked fifteen other times, but it clicked again. i need constant reminding and i need it to be said in a new and fresh way. hopefully all of it will eventually add up to a good and solid foundation where i can start to live like i believe it every single day.
this time it just spoke to my heart letting me know i'm not alone. that other people feel this way too, sometimes. but you know what it also showed me? God knows about all those limitations, restrictions, conflicts, "burdens" and He asks me to live out His will within those. because that's what Emmanuel did. God became a man, and placed Himself inside restraints and limitations on purpose. and He has given us certain restraints and limitations and expects us to live within those as well, whatever they are- be it a certain husband, a certain age or temperament of kids, certain home or income level, our own personality and chaos-tolerance level, our own ability (or inability) to do the various jobs of motherhood well... He has given those to us for a reason, and He still wants us to live out our purpose within those limitations. isn't that so freeing? like we don't have to have it all figured out in order to flourish. we can just take one step and a time and keep on walking, every minute with Him.
it reminded me also of something that really hit me at Hope Spoken when Lauren Chandler was speaking. she encouraged us to remember that our calling is to Jesus. it's not to some specific thing or ministry or place or topic. it's just to Jesus. seasons change and circumstances change and we grow and we evolve. but when our calling is to Jesus Himself, it leaves the door wide open for freedom and growth and changing your mind and even mundane tasks becoming beautifully worthy. it's not boring. you just stick with Him and walk out your days, one minute at a time. that is a breath of fresh air to me. and it's so like Him to keep reminding someone like me, who feels like i'm missing that "big calling" or missing "God's will" or whatever. i think sometimes when you grow up in the church and you hear all the usual talk about God's will and your purpose, you can get so focused on these abstract ideas and concepts and you miss Jesus. right there in the middle of it all, asking you to just walk humbly with Him, trusting that He sees and He knows.
Wonder Women (Full Length) from Barna Group on Vimeo.