Saturday, December 8, 2012

let's get it done

i like doing things. i like lists. i like checking things off lists. i like to do things and get things done. less talking, more box checking. that's my motto. maybe i should've been a bee. i'm not sure, but i am sure i like to accomplish. to show my work. to look back at it and let everyone else see it. a monument to what i've done. let's be honest, a statue to ME. we might as well just make the statue a sculpture of ME. my own personal tower of babel.

i know i have talked about this before. but this slavery to "doing" is quite a deep commitment there are thousands of layers needing to be shed and they come off slowly. one at a time. so bear with me as i again peel back a layer and use my blog as the setting.

my friend emailed me a link to "motherhood as a mission field". i have heard this concept before and it especially grates on me as i dedicated so many years of my life in committment to missions, training for missions, dreaming about missions. now that i have a decade of motherhood under my belt i feel confident in saying, motherhood is not anything like missions. well, not the missions i had in my mind. i read the article anyway and was interested to see the author didn't just rely on the typical cliche "your kids are your greatest mission field" line. she dug a bit deeper. and it got a bit uncomfortable. one paragraph was especially difficult to read...

"It is easy to think you have a heart for orphans on the other side of the world, but if you spend your time at home resenting the imposition your children are on you, you do not. You cannot have a heart for the gospel and a fussiness about your life at the same time. You will never make any difference there if you cannot be at peace here. You cannot have a heart for missions, but not for the people around you. A true love of the gospel overflows and overpowers. It will be in everything you do, however drab, however simple, however repetitive."

motherhood- drab? simple? repetitive? um, yes ma'am. resenting my children as an imposition? um, ouch. yes ma'am. see, my children get in the way of my to do list. and not just the one on paper. the one that's much more dear to me. the great expectations in my mind and heart. the dreams, aspirations, things i hoped for. they are not being fulfilled. they are the things i was going to do FOR the kingdom. FOR God. instead he's asked me to be changed by the gospel and let that overflow to my children. with absolutely NO way to check a box. complete a goal. achieve an objective. and it's getting worse. at least when my kids were in school their teachers and school staff praised my cute christmas gifts and thoughtful teacher appreciation treats. now it's just me and the kids. and i see my lists blowing away in the wind. and no one's telling me i'm great. no one's appreciating my "talents". and everyone's asking for more drab. more simplicity. more repetitive. i'm doing more laundry. emptying more dishwashers. wiping more noses (and other body parts).

and if i truly believe the gospel. that HE has checked all my boxes. HE has said i am enough. not because i am. but because HE is enough on my behalf. then i don't need my lists. my towers. my statue. and i can rest in the drab. the simple. and the repetitive. which is exactly where my kids live. and want me to be.

and i can let God make great achievements from my quiet faithfulness. all glory to him. and not to me. just as it should be.


Becky said...

OUCH!!!! but THANKS SO MUCH- I needed to read that because I am right there with you. Thanks for being so real and May God bless you as you work for HIM and HIS KINGDOM right at home!

Kami said...

I've been thinking a lot on this lately as well. I have this need to have a checklist I can check off the things I've done and done well. But motherhood doesn't really provide that. And at times it gets down right frustrating! But the more I rest in the gospel the more I can rest from checking off those so-called boxes. Thanks for sharing this Kristal.

Carolyn said...

I have been living into this same reality. God is at work in my heart about this too... and it is taking time. Just when I think I've learned the lesson, I find I need it again. This was recently part of a sermon, and I've been lingering over it since, reading and re-reading:

"Impatient people are always expecting the real thing to happen somewhere else and therefore want to go elsewhere. The moment is empty. Patient people dare to stay where they are. Patient living means to live actively in the present and wait there. Waiting, then, is not passive. It involves nurturing the moment..."