The answer to that question right now is me. I trust in me….way too much. I think that I have to do everything for everyone and be everything to everyone. And you know what? It drives me crazy, keeps me from sleeping, steals my joy, deprives others of their rightful place in my life, Joel’s life, and Emme’s life, makes me feel like a failure a lot, and keeps me from trusting the One, Who never fails or changes. You see at my heart I am a perfectionist. All my life, I said I have trusted God but constantly look to myself. Most of my life I have been enough, but it was all about getting it done, not enjoying it or discovering purpose. Once you discover purpose, there is a whole lot more pressure to live on purpose, so the pressure goes right on my shoulders.
Moms, do you feel me? The pressure to teach your kids all they need to know, to play with them, to make sure they have everything they need, to keep the house clean, to cook dinner, to do the laundry, to love and pursue my husband, to be their for and take care of my friends, to spend time with my family, to be hope to people who need it, to be a good and purposeful tutor to the kids that are counting on me for help in reading in math, to take care of my body, to eat right, to drink enough water, to encourage my spouse, to better our sex life, to oh my Lord….are you tired and overwhelmed from reading that list? I am, and you know who I count on to do all that? Myself.
I think a lot of moms do that, and do not ask for or lean on the help that is available to us. But often times, I don’t see the help, I don’t trust the help, and I don’t think the offered help is good enough. Now, we don’t really admit that, but by refusing the help available that is what we are saying. I got all this, and I can handle it. But guess what? We weren’t designed too. It’s overwhelming. Ever hear the saying, “It takes a village!” That is referring to raising kids. And it does take a village. It takes mom and dad, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, friends, pastors, teachers, and many others that I haven’t mentioned. But more than that. It takes God, and the question is Moms, do you trust God enough to live in rest and and not try to take all those roles on yourself? I am learning that.
Wasn’t good at it at all this week. In fact, I drove myself crazy over something that was meant to free me, and I belabored it and made it work. I listened to a great message by Robert Morris on An Attitude of Rest and instead of his points giving me the rest, I took his one point of by trying to save time, you are wasting it and came down to the fact that everything I did was a waste of time. Now, after mulling this over multiple times with Joel and several of my friends, Lena and Marnie, I finally see that all my belaboring was my natural mind twisting what God meant to free me and it enslaved me. I needed to talk about it multiple times before it became automatic how far out of its intended purpose I had taken it. You see last week, I did a whole lot around the house, to get ready for Easter, to encourage others, and to serve my family, but you know what God didn’t intend for me to live every week like that. And because I was so proud of all I got done last week, I got over into works this week that weren’t life giving, they were joy stealing. You life was NOT meant to be all work. Your life was meant to have purpose through your work, but it was also meant for enjoyment and life and rest. Do you take time for enjoyment and rest? God meant for us to trust him. To give our day to Him and not kill ourselves to get EVERYTHING done.
I’ve been reading the book, Captivating, and getting so much about who I am and why I am this way from it, but you know what? I haven’t had time to read it because of all the tasks I have made for myself. That is not right. As moms, as people, we need to build ourselves up and rejuvenate ourselves through a variety of activities that build us up, but often times, we think we don’t have time for that. In the message I listened to by Robert Morris, that last question was do we trust God? Do we trust Him so much that at the end of the day when we see all that was left undone, any way we failed, or anything we could have done better, to rest and believe that all those things we see as failures, that He has made up for? Do we trust Him enough to eventually stop seeing our failures and to just see Him? Do you know that’s what we were made for? How free would we be? How more restful, enjoyable, and well-spent our time would be? But I don’t trust him like that, not yet. And being a recovering perfectionist, I need to remind myself this life and relationship with God is a journey. And right now, though I see things I could do better, I am right where I am supposed to be on the journey, every day seeing all the things already given to me because of Jesus’s sacrifice on the cross that He gave to me. I have to remember there is no destination. There is no final place that I will get to and say it’s done. We don’t think that about our relationships with the people in our lives. We know they grow day by day, and so does our walk with God. And daily He will reveal new treasures to us that makes our lives more expansive.
I believe that God uses our crazy to teach us a lot. I was in the car with a good friend and we were on a bridge behind a big semi-truck, stopped at a red light. The bridge was swaying. That used to never bother me because I thought I would just put the window down before the car hit the water, and I would swim out. But I have daughter now, and that scared me. How would I get her unbuckled to get out? How I could I do that and make sure she lived even if I didn’t? Sorry, I am pausing because tears are flowing from my eyes as I type that. You know why? Because I don’t think humanly, I could. But I know that I would die trying! And you know what, she woke up in the middle of the night last night and again early this morning, and I was mad. I just wanted to rest, and somehow that thought came to my mind. Did you ever think of crazy things when you’re mad or even bored? How would I save her? I tried to think of everything I could and then I heard a voice, not a condemning voice, but a sweet one that released me. It said, “Do you trust me?” Because even in that situation, should it ever happen, I could choose to trust Him and be saved. How do I know? Romans 5:10 says, “For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! I could trust Him there because the second part of this verse tells me I am reconciled already and He loves me and cares for me and every part of my life. The point of the “Do you trust me?” was to release me not condemn me. To tell me that all those things that I worry about it, He knows and He cares about them as much as I do, and He has a way of salvation in my every day life not just to keep me from going to hell.
So I can trust him in my every day going in and going out life with the big and little things I am tempted to worry about it. It’s my goal to trust him. To let go off all this reliance, pressure, and guilt I put on myself and instead rest on better, stronger, and more sure shoulders, His not mine. And you know what? If I did, my life would bigger, better, fuller. My biggest problem is my natural trust in my strength, my thoughts, and my wisdom. If I let go of that and jumped into his arms, I would be at rest. Christine Caine said it perfectly, and I am writing it down and putting it in front of me so I see it and remind myself. “Today, accept more & reason less, trust more & control less, risk more & protect less, listen more & talk less, give more & take less.”
You see we are all blessed because we have two Daddies. My earthly daddy is the best. He still is. He still hugs me and smiles when he sees me and tells me how much he loves me. He does the same thing with my daughter. But as good as he is in my eyes, my heavenly Father loves me more, protects me more, provides for me more. I also have two Husbands. I have a great earthly one, who gives himself for our family, but I have a better heavenly one, Jesus. Although those things are hard to imagine. They are the utmost of truths. So my goal is to let go of my human reasonings, strength, and reliance on self, and trust God. Why? Because it makes me better as a mom, a wife, a daughter, a friend, and it lets me rest!
So my question for you today, moms and dads, is “Do you trust Him?” Not in a condemning way. But in a very freeing way. Release all you have to Him and trust at the end of each day, including your day of rest, that what you did was enough and He is more than able to make up for the rest! Because He is…even when you fail! He is enough, and He is trustworthy.