People often ask me how I do it all – keeping up with 4 little kids, a husband that works a lot of random overtime and weekends, homeschooling, the house…
Here’s my secret: I don’t. I’m not enough.
This is what my living room looks like this morning.
Toys scattered, folding chairs and tissue paper leftover from a birthday party (on Saturday, ahem), and a couple of in-progress projects for my husband stashed against the walls.
Does it always look like that? No. Sometimes it’s worse. Sometimes it’s totally clean, and a nice space to relax in. I prefer the latter, but life happens. Ya know – one broke down vehicle, a sick dog, two sick kids… There may or may not be a “note” in my phone where I made a list of what everyone wanted for breakfast on Monday. At Sonic. Life is messy.
Here’s the other part of my not-so-secret secret: God doesn’t expect me to do it all, every day.
He expects me to follow after Him and serve others wholeheartedly. If that means we get school lessons done, everything checked off the to do list, and supper on the table at 5 – great! If we work hard, but have to slow down school to accommodate a little boy not feeling well, and I get less cleaning done because I have to take the time to teach littles to pick up after themselves – that’s great too.
Mama, if you’re exhausted from being up all night with a newborn or sick babies and need to sit a bit longer reading your bible and drinking another cup of coffee before going head first into that busy day – that’s great too. That is not time wasted. God created our bodies and spirits to need rest.
Sometimes we (Read: I) take the “One who is slack in his work is brother to one who destroys,” part (Proverbs 18:9) way too far and feel like a failure when it doesn’t all get done, despite my best efforts. Laziness certainly doesn’t glorify God, at all. However, God gave us mamas each 24 hours and no third arms. 🙂
He sees you making those extensive to do lists that you know won’t all get done in one day with a toddler at your feet.
He sees you struggling to stay awake through those 2 a.m. feedings.
He sees you staying up late to talk to that teenager with hurt feelings.
He sees you silently cleaning up a mess no one else noticed.
He sees you packing lunches and brewing coffee in the dark of the morning.
He knows how hard we try. He sees our hearts when we realize we should have tried hard.
He also gives us grace.
Give yourself some grace. Put breakfast on paper plates if the kitchen is already a mess. Grab a second, or third, cup of coffee, read your bible, and do your best. Don’t say yes to that extracurricular just because you’re afraid of letting someone down. Apologize to the little one you were short with. Ask for forgiveness, and let His love wipe the slate clean. Love Him, love others, and rest in the knowledge that God loves you. Mamas, we are not enough, but He makes us enough.
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. (2 Corinthians 12:9 NIV)