How many of you have felt overwhelmed with large the responsibility of raising a child (or children)? How about that feeling of looking at the day ahead and wondering how you will find the energy to take care of your child(ren), AND somehow complete the ‘to-do’ list? I will go even further- how many of you have wondered if you are even cut out for this whole ‘mom’ thing? That you are tired of the mundane, and feel like you have, perhaps, missed the calling that you are skilled for. I am not ashamed to admit that I have felt this way at times.
When I was pregnant with my first child, I had this untrue idea of what being a mom would be like. I thought that it would be like just adding another human to our family; that our routine would change a bit, but that I could also fit this tiny human into my normal routines. I thought it would be easier. I thought that I had all of the greatest ideas on how to raise and discipline my child. I knew exactly what I would do and I had it all figured out in my head. Then I had my baby. A sweet baby boy who was relatively calm (unless hungry) and slept great for a baby. Yet, it was such a shock to me. I couldn’t just do what I used to with him tagging along. It took at least 30 minutes to leave my house to go anywhere, and longer if he pooped after I set him in his car seat- this happened often. Once I got where I was going, I could rarely get in a normal conversation, shop, or do anything else without having to stop to feed him or change him. I felt so isolated and alone. Yet I had a full heart of love for this tiny human.
I never realized just how much sacrifice it was to raise a child. I was exhausted ALL THE TIME. My body had changed, my whole life turned upside down. I loved being a mom, but I often felt unequipped, despite my well planned out ideas. I was not surrendered to Christ. I was not surrendered to the fact that I needed to be up throughout the night and then quite early in the morning. I was not surrendered to the fact that my days would be spent serving my child, and now children (3 boys in 3 years). I was not surrendered to the idea that my dreams, hobbies, career, and social life were now on hold for the foreseeable future. Most of all, I was not surrendered to the idea that being a mother was the most important job of all. It all felt so mundane.
God got a hold of my heart. In His mercy, He transformed me.
“The poor and needy search for water, but there is none; their tongues are parched with thirst. But I the Lord will answer them; I, the God of Israel, will not forsake them. I will make rivers flow on barren heights, and springs within the valleys. I will turn the desert into pools of water, and parched grounds into springs. I will put in the desert the cedar and the acacia, the myrtle and the olive. I will set junipers in the wasteland, the fir and the cypress together, so that people may see and know, may consider and understand, that the hand of the Lord has done this, that the Holy One of Israel has created it.” -Isaiah 41:17-20
I can try by my own strength to be a ‘good’ mom. To do all the ‘good’ mom things with my children and in my home. Ultimately, I will fail time and time again. But, if I surrender myself daily to the calling that Christ has given me- to be a mom to these children and all that that entails, and I trust Him that His plans are much higher than mine, then He will be the strength that I need. He will guide me. He will sustain me where I lack. Most of all, He will help me to see the calling of being a mom as it truly is- the most important one in my entire life. Then it won’t seem so mundane; the small things become important. When I feel myself trying to take back control, I can surrender it again. I don’t have to fix it, I simply have to surrender it. I can breathe a sigh of relief, for I don’t have to muster up my own strength.
To end with encouragement to all of you moms who feel like you don’t have what it takes- if you take your problems- exhaustion, stress, depression, fears, discontentment- to the Lord, He will hear you. He will not only hear you, but also transform your heart and life in such incredible ways, that it will be noticeable that He has done it. You will be overflowing with joy in the season of motherhood that he has you in, and through you, He will leave a lasting legacy for your children.
Lord, I repent for not trusting your will for my life. I surrender my cares and my concerns about my days to you. I ask, Lord, that you would give me strength to be the mom that my children need me to be. Give me energy and peace. Help me to be patient, and creative. Cause springs to flow in my life in any area that is experiencing drought. I trust in you, Lord. In Jesus’ name, amen.