The world is full of books and posts addressing mothers and their common feelings of exhaustion and overwhelm, and like all of the other moms out there who long to do this whole thing right, I have cracked open some of those top sellers and clicked into some of those viral essays, and in doing so, I’ve noticed a common theme: How to Juggle it All – but my spirit cannot ignore the fact that, as mothers, God hasn’t called us to Juggle it All.
As Christ-followers, he has called us to a different way of seeing things…a different way of doing things.
In 2011, God gifted us with our first child. The anointed calling of motherhood had been placed on my life, and I was so grateful, but our new day-to-day rhythm was a huge adjustment for me – and I struggled to figure it out.
I was used to interacting with people throughout the day – How was this all going to look for me…all day…every day?
This pace felt so much slower – How was I going to keep from going crazy?
I knew that God had called me to be fully committed to the journey, and I was excited about it, but I was having a hard time understanding how I was going to walk it out practically. Full-time motherhood did not allow for much me-time, a full-time online business, or any of the other things I considered in an effort to cope with this life change.
See how I was looking out…instead of in? And in doing so, my anxieties only intensified. Finally, I began to catch on – Satan was succeeding in his attempt to distract me and pull me away, but the Father was asking me to stop looking out and begin pressing in to what He had called me to do.
God’s desire was for me to draw close to him and embrace what was being asked of me throughout the day (and night) – feedings, diaper changes, laundry, cleanups, bath times, and bedtime stories – and as I began to walk in intentional obedience, He proved to be for me everything I needed. He filled in the gaps where I was lonely…and tired…and overwhelmed…and unsure, and throughout those months of transition, I began to feel what I had been longing for in my new role – fulfillment, peace, joy, and certainty.
His promises are true.
Over time, my sweet boy and I found a rhythm that worked for us, activities that were a good fit for our days, friendships that gifted us with time with other people, and opportunities for me to enjoy my creative interests to the point that I was able during that season of life. God changed my perspective, and then He took care of the details.
Instead of looking out, I pressed in, and during that time, God showed me so much about myself and allowed me to experience more of Him than I would have ever seen had my focus been elsewhere.
Fast-forward now almost seven years. Boy has our life changed! We are now a homeschooling family of six! Our day-to-day is busier than I could have ever imagined. I have four very different kids all in four very different stages of childhood.
Image Credit: Tara Marie Photography
When I look directly in front of me and see the tasks that lie before me in a given day, it can be overwhelming, but when I choose to look up – drawing close to the Father who gifted me with these little ones and embracing what He has called me to do each day, He reminds me that He is with me…and that He and I are working in rhythm together to make eternal deposits into the lives of my children. Once again, when I press in, He shows up – with an overwhelming supply of everything I need to walk out my calling.
The world wants to tell us what mothers should and should not be doing, but I serve a Savior who I believe speaks to each one of us individually and if we go to him with our questions about what He has for us in each chapter of our story here on this earth, I have experienced how He very clearly responds with clarity as we walk in obedience to Him.
As gospel-minded believers, true fulfillment can only be found in walking out the specific calling God has placed on our lives – whatever that might be, and Satan’s greatest joy comes from distracting us from that. The Evil One comes as an Angel of Light who is consistent in his efforts to distort, steal, and destroy. May we be mothers who are discerning enough to stop him dead in his tracks. May we recognize where God has called us to be fully present right now, and may we press in there – allowing Him to be everything we need as we continue looking up along the way.