I am definitely in a season where the days are long. My mornings typically start at around 5:30am and my kiddos go to bed at 9:30pm. My motivation typically wanes at around 5:30pm when I am reminded I need to make dinner.
Didn’t I just make a meal?
Didn’t I just clean the kitchen?
Didn’t I just do laundry?
One thing we can rejoice about – there will be NO laundry in heaven. Laundry didn’t come into the picture until AFTER Adam and Eve sinned…think about that for a minute.
My life for awhile had been organized chaos.
Laundry basket after laundry basket filled the entire back of my bedroom – my BEDROOM.
There was just no other place to put it that would be out of sight of friends that might be visiting my home, and I just didn’t have time to fold the laundry.
SO much has happened within the last week, though. Although my house isn’t spotless, it definitely looks managed. I realized I needed a system, and I found one in a book I started reading. But even then, after I had finally managed to get my home under control there seemed to be this deep sense of emptiness.
I have a lot of things to do. I feel I spend most of my time doing what God has called me to do. For years I homeschooled my children because I felt called to homeschool my children, and I don’t regret one single second of it.
Lately I had spent a lot of time serving and socializing. All of this, in my heart, was good so it was easy to look past the mess that was accumulating in my home. And also the mess that was accumulating in my heart, the lack of self-control, and discipline.
Not all things were bad, in fact a lot of things within my personal life AND in my home were getting better. But I still had this sense that something was lacking.
It’s the same feeling I get at 5:30pm every single night. That feeling that maybe I hadn’t done enough in the day, and maybe I was wasting my time.
For so long I thought folding laundry and following a routine chore system at home was a waste of my time. I can’t even begin to explain how many times I have yelled at my children out of frustration simply because deep down in my heart I felt like I should be spending my time on more important things.
My oldest is 16 years old, it has taken me that long to realize that wisdom can only be found in those small tasks that everyone else thinks they are too important to do.
All those years I thought were a waste of time, and honestly they were some of the best years of my life.
Maybe I feel that sense of emptiness at the end of the day because I wish my life was just a little bit more perfect, my house cleaner, my body slimmer.
I think back to the years where I not only thought I was wasting my time, but where I thought I didn’t have time to take care of my body, and nor did I have the motivation to. It was a dark season in my life, one where I often found myself feeling hopeless. I often wondered if there was more to losing weight than to simply look good, because if that’s what it was all about then I was out of luck because my body will never look the way those women in the magazine look, no matter how hard I try.
So many years wasted because I felt like I was too important for the big things, and yet I had no time for the little things either.
These feelings certainly come back to me at night. When I am invited to attend a small group with a friend and I can’t help but feel that mommy guilt again, because I am leaving my kids with a babysitter for one evening out of the month.
Where did that mommy guilt come from? I thought I had gotten over this.
The mommy guilt definitely is a bit overwhelming lately, and I know where it is coming from…it is coming from all those days wasted wallowing in the overwhelm of the journey ahead, but I did not make the effort to take the next step to make the changes that need to be made.
The New Year is always a great time to do that.
If you aren’t happy with some things in your life, or maybe you feel that sense of void at the end of the day like I do, all you need to do my friend is take the next step away from anything that falls short of God’s glory and grace in your life.
Today I was reading in Matthew chapter 18 about where Jesus was saying that it is better to gouge out our own eye than it is for us to lust after someone and end up in hell. I think that scripture sounds a bit harsh and may seem a bit over the top. But it spoke to me today.
It spoke to the heart of being willing to lose something that has become apart of who you are in order to live the abundant life God has promised you through His son Jesus.
What I gather from this message is it is better to lose than it is to be consumed by the thing you are consuming.
We truly need to pay attention to these things. I need to be more aware of what my day looks like and I need to be present with my children.
I also need to let go of the mommy guilt.
We can’t be everything to everyone, so maybe it’s time to say NO to a few things.
This may include saying NO to some good things, too.
About a year and a half ago I opened up my calendar and gave my time to God. No more saying I was too busy to make connections with people.
Now I am opening up my calendar to God and no more saying I am too busy to do what God has called me to do.
As a wife and a mother that always means I am to constantly pursue a relationship with God. Growing in wisdom by reading His word and praying every single day.
It also means I am to establish a system that will help to maintain this home. In this I am fulfilling God’s call on my life, and even though folding laundry might seem small, it’s actually a task that is significant in that it will help to open up doors for me to do more of the other things I feel God has called me to do….
And that is to write.
As much as I love to be around people for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, I truly feel I make the biggest impact by being a writer (outside of being a wife & mother.)
I have found that when I don’t write every single day, that is when I feel that sense of void in my heart. But when I do find time to write I need to fight against the lies swirling around in my head, and I need to muster up the motivation to actually DO IT….I do this by drinking a cup of coffee (caffeine to the rescue.)
But isn’t that the thing, the only thing holding us back is the actual DOING. Some of us don’t need to read another book about how to organize our home, some of us just need to start implementing what we’ve already learned.
So right now I am implementing new things into my routine of life. But I am also making sure I make time to do the things that God has called me to do, and I am investing my time where I make the most impact.What kind of changes do you feel God is calling you to make in the new year?
No matter what Christmas was for us in the past, it seems like every year it has the opportunity, and the possibility, to be something completely different and brand new. That’s what Jesus brought with Him as He was born into this world; He brought with Him a clean slate, a fresh start, and something brand new to our lives and to our faith.
Today I invite you to come and take this imperfect advent journey with me to discover the beauty of the good and perfect gifts God has given us through His Son Jesus. Let us journey together to discover what those gifts are, how we can receive those gifts, and most importantly the importance of being a good steward of those gifts.