I’ve never done well with mundane. For as long as I can remember I’ve been the type of person who always needs to be busy; I need a full schedule and constant action to feel productive and accomplished.
So when I decided to leave my full-time career to become a stay-at-home mom it raised a few eyebrows. It seemed I was the only one who didn’t see the potential challenges that this new path would mean for a perpetual schedule-filler like me. It only took a few months to recognize that this new calling wasn’t going to be as smooth and carefree as I thought it would be.
About a year and a half before our second child (our son) was born, my husband and I unexpectedly lost our daughter shortly after her birth. The months after she died I struggled hard with what God’s purpose was, but after I found myself pregnant again (only 8 months after her death) I was certain that God was placing it on my heart that time with our children was precious – so precious that I needed to make sure I spent these early years with my new baby. I know I heard God’s message clearly; there was no doubt I was to leave my high-paying, successful career to become a stay-at-home wife and mother.
While God’s message was very clear – what I believed that meant for my life turned out to be very murky. Embarrassingly, I will admit that I believed the hardest part of motherhood (burying a child) was behind me and that this new baby and new journey would lead to brighter days and an easier road. Don’t get me wrong, I knew there would be sleepless nights up with a sick baby and days where things didn’t go as planned, but I wasn’t prepared for the flood of obstacles that the Lord was about to send me.
I struggled hard. My life took a complete u-turn from what it had looked like. Instead of full days of meetings and conference calls I was now faced with feedings and piles of laundry. The sleepless nights I expected once and while turned into every night occurrences (sometimes multiple times – think 8-10- a night!).
Debilitating postpartum anxiety and depression reared its ugly head months after I thought I was in the clear and I faced a load of mom-guilt that I didn’t know how to manage: I was a bereaved mother who wanted nothing more than to raise a child on earth, but now that I had one I was not as happy as I felt I should be. What was wrong with me? I wrestled with my new role and how to manage the ordinary and mundane of this new life.
Well-meaning friends would tell me that I just needed a little break; it was important that I took some time away for myself. Self-care is a pretty trendy term right now, and while I agree it’s extremely important to care for ourselves (in fact, God commands us to treat our bodies as the temples he’s made them to be -1 Corinthians 3:16-17), there were no amount of solo Target runs that could fill my cup the way it needed to be filled.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for a lunch date with girlfriends or a splurge on a massage every now and again, but those earthly things can’t fill me up the way the Holy Spirit can.
I didn’t need more manicures or sweat sessions – I needed more Jesus!
Maybe you find yourself looking around the house at the mound of toys on the floor, the unfolded laundry that is piled in the basket or the dishes that never seem to wash themselves and wonder if you’re actually getting anything accomplished. I know that when I held a full-time job it was easier to quantify my productivity, so much so that now I find myself asking if I’m succeeding or failing at this mom job more often than I care to admit.
She goes on to write,
It wasn’t until I started making Jesus a regular part of my day; calling out to Him in times of frustration and weariness (dealing with cranky children who refuse to nap) and praising Him in our small successes (washing, drying and folding a load of laundry in the same day!) that I began to realize He didn’t call me to do this alone.
He is near, this work is important and I am the person He called for the job! The more I call upon him – especially in those small moments – the more connected I feel to him and recognize his grace AND his glory in this season.
You may find yourself in a situation that you thought was going to be a bit more glamourous than it currently is; don’t mistake mundane for mediocre.
There is nothing mediocre about any of the Lord’s callings.
Every calling, every season, plays an important part in our journey here on earth and our relationship with God. So trust in him; trust in his promise to uphold you and be assured that God will never lead you down any road He isn’t prepared to travel with you.