I haven’t written a new blog post in several weeks, and if I’m being honest, that really bothers me some days. I have committed to contributing to this blog and serving in this ministry on a weekly basis, but as time goes on, and my seasons of life change, sometimes motherhood and ministry collide. I have good intentions, I have a brain swirling with thoughts that just beg to be shared, but sometimes it’s really hard to make sense of anything at all when you haven’t slept in a really long time, and you have a screaming toddler in your lap slapping the keys on the keyboard faster than you can push her little hands away.
The insecurities deep within me shout the loudest in times like these.
“Look at you! You signed up for this, and once again you can’t follow through. All of these other women have busy lives! They have families, jobs outside of the home, and other commitments just like you…so why can’t you keep up? They keep up! They’re faithful week after week, but then there’s you. There you are writing something last minute again, as night creeps into another day. You say it’s because it’s the only time you have, but is it really? Are you going to end up running an old post again because once again you didn’t follow through? Why do you even try?”
This self-defeat fueled by my own insecurities, makes it next to impossible to write anything worth while.
How can I focus on you Lord, when I can’t even quiet my soul?
When I attempt to set aside time to write, or serve in the other ministries that I’ve committed to, a different voice-just as loud and unhelpful says “What kind of mom goes to her bedroom and shuts the door, when all her children want is just a few minutes of her time? You spend all day away from them with your ‘real’ job, and they want nothing more than to just sit in your lap, with your arms wrapped tightly around their little bodies. Can’t you just give them that? Why can’t you wait until they are in bed to write? Who cares if you are exhausted?! Maybe you shouldn’t sign up for so many things if you can’t keep up. What can possibly be more important than this time you have with your family? Don’t you love them? Don’t you miss them during the day? I bet they’d love to be your laptop tonight, with your quiet, focused, undivided attention…” Right this minute, the baby is banging on the closed bedroom door, screaming at the top of her lungs, just wanting to be held. My fingers are rushing to type as fast as they can, as tears creep to the corners of my eyes and sneak quietly down my cheeks.
I’ll be done in just a minute baby girl. Please just give me a few more minutes…
It’s really hard when motherhood and ministry collide.
I’m trying really hard to do both things- be a good mom, and follow through with my commitments in ministry. I’m trying to do both as well as I can, but honestly all I really want to do right now is put the laptop aside, wrap my arms around my family, and go to bed.
25 She is strong and respected and not afraid of the future. 26 She speaks with a gentle wisdom. 27 She is always busy and looks after her family’s needs. 28 Her children show their appreciation, and her husband praises her. 29 He says, “Many women are good wives, but you are the best of them all.” 30 Charm is deceptive and beauty disappears, but a woman who honors the Lord should be praised. 31 Give her credit for all she does. She deserves the respect of everyone. Proverbs 31:25-31 GNT
Here’s the problem, so often I forget that my first ministry is currently right outside of my bedroom walls. My first ministry is that handsome man I married, that gentleman that gave me his last name. He’s that knight in shining armor sitting on the couch in the other room week after week, trying to keep the children fed, bathed, entertained, or tucked into bed, as I pour my heart out via the internet. My husband is my first ministry. My first ministry is also these little girls that call me mom, and beg for my undivided attention, especially when I’m in the bathroom or trying to focus on writing. My first ministry looks like hugs and kisses, tickle fights, late night loads of laundry, brushing teeth, wiping bottoms for the millionth time, and holding barf bowls at 3am. My first ministry is not writing blogs, teaching in Sunday School, comforting women who have lost babies, or singing in the choir.
My family is my first ministry and it’s only when I forget that, that motherhood and ministry collide.
My family is my first ministry, the very first one I committed to, and serving them is what should be my joyful priority. My family is not my only ministry, and absolutely should not to be used as an excuse to not serve other places, but they are my first ministry. Serving my family IS serving the Lord. I’m supposed to love my family and teach them about His love, in the ways I serve them in the day to day things. Maybe if I spent more time remembering that, it would be less often that motherhood and ministry collide.
So this week, I’m going to close the lap top a little early, because I know that I’m not going to look back on the time I had with my family, and wish I had written more blogs.
In His Love,