Being a mom, finding me…and a gift from the Proverbs 31 woman

I’m a mom…mom of 4 and I can’t even begin to describe how beautiful motherhood is.  I mean yeah, it’s messy but it’s beautiful.  It’s beautiful that God entrusted me with 4 lives…that I would have the privilege to love them, nurture them and most importantly point them to the one who loaned them to me.

I love all things that come with the territory of being a mom but for some reason…prior to actually being a mother I got the idea that moms don’t want to do anything but ‘mom’ stuff. And here’s the thing, doing mom stuff is amazing…doing mom stuff is what I dreamt of, pinch myself when I wake up every morning…I’m delighted. After 5 years of praying and struggling through infertility I am beyond overjoyed that I get to wake up every morning just like the rest of the planet (a little more sleepless) and feed my kids cheerios, pack lunches, hug them tight, sing lullabies, play hide and seek, color, read Good night moon 87 times…give more hugs and a bunch of I love you’s scattered throughout the day. I love all of these things. I love that this is what I do and part of who I am…Mom.

I love the life scenes I get to live. I am beyond blessed, I am beyond in love with my kids, I am beyond in love with the reality that I get to do this …and yet there is more.

I didn’t know there could be more…. I didn’t know I was allowed to enjoy more..or to want more.

I didn’t know moms could secretly desire to make a mark on the planet beyond their homes.

I didn’t know moms could enjoy things other things along with making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and folding piles of laundry.  And don’t mistake the phrase “peanut butter sandwiches and laundry” as though I am somehow trivializing those things…those are actually some of the greatest things we do as moms…it’s the consistency that we provide our children through these seemingly mundane things…it’s the “mom will always feed and clothe me” that bounces around in the heads of our little ones that provides a security of sorts…but in addition to those important things…

I didn’t know moms were allowed to enjoy their motherhood and being _ themselves…

I didn’t know this.

I suppose maybe it was unintentionally taught to me in a multitude of forms whether it be unspoken expectations or the culture around me but for whatever it’s worth…I didn’t know moms…were also girls, women, dreamers, world changers.  Maybe somewhere along the way something or someone unintentionally tells us moms that we are done…being…us…but that couldn’t be farther from the truth because the me that I have become as mother…is a different kind of woman than the girl I use to be.  Being a mother has made me more of a person that I want to be….

But I didn’t know …I could or should still be…

Part of the not knowing I could be ‘mom’ and…me…I  suppose also came from my own fears of being afraid to step out into uncharted territories and the other part…well

I suppose the guilt…

the guilt that I enjoy building leggos and sandcastles and pancake breakfasts…but I also love writing.

That I cherish running around the yard playing soccer with my kids but I also enjoy writing and recording a song.

That I delight in teaching my kids how to spell, read and color…but I also delight  in pouring into Single moms and watching their aha! moments as forgiveness clicks…as awareness of their worth clicks…as a desire to seek God blossoms.

For a long time I felt guilty that I loved the being of mommy… and the being …of me.

I didn’t know the two could go together.

I suppose I thought I had to choose.

I thought I had to separate myself.

I didn’t know all of these things were allowed… but now I do.

And I suppose now I understand the Proverbs 31 woman a little better. I use to despise her…goodness I use to fear her and feel inferior to her…This Martha Stewart of the Bible who sells real estate, whittles sticks into houses and likely creates beautiful tapestries out of silk…all the while making cakes decorated with spun sugar and no doubt likely spent time in prayer and fasting 3/4 of her day.She was unattainable to me…until I realized the ‘her’ I had created was one that was more like the mom we see on Pinterest or Facebook who drinks green smoothies everyday, whose children never talk back, who never yells at her kids, whose sink is always empty, laundry is always militarily folded and makes all of their clothing from cotton that they grew in their back yard…right next to their chicken coop. *If that’s you don’t get offended…all of those things just seem like the perfect mom to me 🙂 * The Proverbs 31 woman that I had feared and hated was perfection…but that’s not who the Proverbs 31 woman was intended to be…nor was that even what this beautiful passage was talking about…

No, the Proverbs 31 woman wasn’t trying to attain perfect achievements in all of these areas of her life (husband, children, job, domestic duties etc.) She wasn’t trying to be ‘the best and most perfect’, the most successful, the most talented, the most …most..most…best…best…bestest…no here’s what she did…nor do I think she was eve trying to ‘control’ all aspects of her world…but what she did do…

she honored ALL that was entrusted to her.

She was a mom…and a person. The two are one but we separate them somehow.

Whatever her gifts were…whether it was buying and purchasing land, creating, making, fixing, raising her family, loving her family, feeding her family, leading her family…all of these things she stewarded with joy.

All of these things she did UNTO the Lord and she was praised for it because she was honoring God in all of it.

She likely made mistakes, she likely yelled at her kids, she likely lost some real estate deals and made a few sunken cakes but whatever she was given, her husband, her children, her home, her God given gifts..she used, she shared, she stewarded.

For me it opened my eyes to be comfortable in all facets of my place in this life. Together with my husband I am to serve, lead and love our family. I am also called to use my gifts. I write. I sing. I encourage people. So I am leading my family and enjoying every breath that it means to be a mom. At the same time I am recording my first solo album and no longer sheepishly hiding behind words in my notebook but generously and openly sharing what the Lord has taught me.

All things unto Him.

I’m no longer enslaved to my distorted ideas of that Proverbs 31 woman as being unattainable but embracing her as someone who has taught me more about me. I’ve been given to abundantly and I’ll give back abundantly, share abundantly, steward abundantly.

Entrusted with much…all things unto Him.

If you’re a mama…you don’t have to be perfect…just love them well by relying on God’s perfect love and point them repeatedly to the one who is perfect.

“Her children arise and call her blessed” Proverbs 31:28

If you’re a wife don’t try to be perfect…but honor and respect your marriage..

“Her husband has full confidence in her
and lacks nothing of value.
12 She brings him good, not harm,
all the days of her life.” Proverbs 31:11-12

Your gifts…use them…use them as they are from Him  – don’t waste it. Use it – Unto Him.

“She sets about her work vigorously;
her arms are strong for her tasks.” Proverbs 31:17

If you have a dream …dream…it’s okay…you can do that too. All things…unto Him. All things.

Don’t bury it.

Don’t underestimate your place.

Single, Married, Mom, Friend, Girl, Woman…Daughter of the King…steward all that you have been entrusted with…whatever those things, people, experiences, understandings are…Honor Him…

Unto Him….All Unto Him..