Have you ever been asked that question?
I have and every time I laugh inwardly! Because the answer is that I don't.
Even now as I write this, my boys are playing, my girl is reading. And I feel the pressure of not doing enough. Of never doing enough. Will they grow up thinking that mommy spent more time reading then playing?
My husband is taking out the trash- loading the car with the bags that I fill, with the meat that I had to throw out, because I forgot to freeze it and didn't cook it before the use by date.
My dishwasher is running, but there are still a pile of dirty dishes on the counter. I never seem to be able to catch up.
Let's not even talk about the laundry, okay?
I missed calling my dear daddy on his birthday. I can rationalize that by saying that he was surrounded by family and probably didn't miss my call at all. And I am going to see him next month and there is no doubt that I will celebrate him fully then!
I spend a lot of time on facebook and comment way too much, but it is because I truly love my friends. And I want them to know this- and never doubt it! But even with all of my efforts, I know that there are friends who are disappointed with me.
I am settling into the role of pastor's wife, but I still feel a bit inadequate. Our church has some amazing men and women and I sometimes wonder, do I have anything to contribute?
So, the answer to this question- how do you do it all?- is not only that I don't, but that I am learning to let go of the striving to do it all.
My kids need to be able to play on their own. They are developing their creativity. They are learning that the world does not revolve around them. In a little bit, we will be going on a mission to explore Rochester. And we are going to have a great time. There is no need to feel guilty about taking time for myself.
In a few weeks, I will turn 37. I have come a long way since my first few years as a bride. I have learned a bit more about planning meals, grocery shopping, cooking. But I still have a long way to go. And that is okay. I am learning that being a wife and a mother doesn't mean that I will be brilliant at all things related to homemaking. I was a tomboy. I preferred to spend time with my dad and dreaded anything that had to do with housework. My mom is always amazed when I share something new that I have made or attempted. When I remember how far I have come, it puts all of these things in perspective!
What would Jesus think if he came into my house and saw the state of my kitchen? Well, He would already know that I had a friend who was here for the weekend. He would know that I was more concerned with spending time with her then keeping up with the dishes. And I like to think that this would make Him smile.
We're still not going to talk about laundry!
I will never be great at birthday cards and phone calls. But there are other things that I am extremely good at. It doesn't mean that I shouldn't make an effort to show the ones that I dearly love that they are special to me in the way that they expect love. But showing love SHOULD be a reflection of me. We made birthday cupcakes to celebrate my Daddy!
I have amazing friends who live all over the world. The beauty of friendship is when you are able to pick up right where you left off, no matter how much time or distance has separated you. I am closest to my friends who understand that I am not perfect- who know my failings, yet love me- NO MATTER WHAT! They are willing to challenge me where I need to be challenged, but they love me through it all. That is the type of friend that I want to be!
And being a pastor's wife- in a week, I will be joining a women's Bible study that will work through Beth Moore's "Esther". I worked through this study two years ago and at the time I was struck with the verse in which Mordecai (Esther's uncle) says, "And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a time as this?" (Esther 4:14). I am learning that I don't need to have this all figured out. I simply need to be willing to be used by my Father, because he has put me here for a reason. I am embracing it!
Oh, there is such freedom in understanding that we don't have to be cookie cutter moms, wives, friends, housekeepers, or whatever hats we wear. We simply need to be who God is calling us to be. Each one of us has been placed exactly where we are for such a time as this!
And when we have success, but KNOW that in our own strength and left to our own devices, things would not have turned out quite the way it did, guess who gets the glory? Our great, almighty Father God!
I don't do it all (and most of what I DO do, I don't do well!), BUT I have a great God who delights to work through me. May He receive the honor and the glory!
Linking with The Better Mom today, but have no clue how to actually share the cute little button that would take you directly there. But you should go and visit her site. You will find some great things there!