Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Mom I Am

Lately I’ve seen the stark reality of the mom I am.  I am tired, disinterested, stressed, annoyed, even angry.  I am just getting by, ignoring problems and hoping they get better or go away.  I am an activities coordinator, (kind of) a cook, dishwasher, appointment maker and homework helper.  I am a slave driver and nagger.  I am wrapped up in the things I want to do or accomplish in a day.

It hasn’t been a pretty picture.  That is not the mom I want to be.  The mom I want to be is engaged and in tune with the matters of her kids’ lives and hearts.  The mom I want to be does not try to ignore things or get bored of kids’ stories or problems.  The mom I want to be is patient and loving, open and caring.  The mom I want to be discusses the hard issues with love and applies the perfect balance and remedy.  The mom I want to be gives her time freely to her kids.  The mom I want to be prays with and for her kids’ needs and hearts.

The mom I am takes the easy way out at times.  I focus on tasks and activities instead of relationships and emotions.  I half heartedly listen.  I scold when I should comfort.  I just want to get through the day, week, month or year. 

I’m not sure where this great divide came between the mom I am and the mom I want to be.  The truth is the mom I want to be does not and cannot exist left to my own ways.   Left on my own, I will focus on the temporary things that don’t matter.  I will pout about not having enough time.  I will be ruled by my human desires.

For, as I have often told you before and now tell you again even with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is set on earthly things. But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ,  who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.   Philippians 3:18-21

The good news is God is willing to refine me as a mom and as a person.  He is at work in my heart and life and has a plan for the mom HE wants me to be.  Even those ugly moments when I realize I’m doing a lousy job are opportunities for transformation.  A chance to turn to Him and admit I can’t do it.  I need Him. 

That’s my big  problem, I’m using my own vision as a guide instead of His.  He is The Father and if I have any hope of becoming the mom I want to be, my focus needs to be on Him, not myself.  He promises to be faithful to change my heart and make me more like Him.  He is all the things that make up the mom I want to be. 

If I am more like Jesus, I’ll become more engaged because He is relational.  I will encourage and bring hope.  I will be focused on the heart of their needs.  I will deal with the tough issues.  I will take time to listen.  I will spend less time fixing, more time feeling and understanding.  I will be more focused on serving my family than myself.

Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.  John 13:14-17

Let’s face it, it’s easier to focus on the tasks, activities and day to day routine than to comfort in disappointment, love in tough times or value each day and opportunity God gives us. 

Inevitably, there are going to be days when the mom I am reappears.  I’m only human.  I’m a sinner saved by grace.  But Jesus is the key to making me into the mom I want to be.  If I allow Him to change me, the mom I am will fade away.

I know five kids and one mediocre mother who will be very, very thankful for that. 

Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.  Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead,  I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

  Philippians 3:12-14


Lesley said...

Man, I needed that today. Thanks Michelle for taking your own inventory...it is not easy to do and for so eloquently revealing the truth that mirrors SO many of us moms. I love when God uses others to speak to me.

Peter and Nancy said...

Ugh. How I want to leave behind those times when I'm not the mom my kids deserve. So grateful we have a fresh start every day with Christ.