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This year was the first time ever I didn’t want the school year to start. I know it sounds crazy, but we have had the most wonderful summer. We didn’t go anywhere fancy like Disneyland, Hawaii or even on our yearly summer trip to Tahoe. We just stayed home and hung out. We had many late nights watching movies followed by many late starts to the day. There was a little shopping here and there, but mainly staying home and connecting as a family. It was a calm summer and I wasn’t bored once! Usually, I can’t sit still and need to be working on something.
Since school has started, we are now on day 17 (not that I’m counting or anything 😀 ), it’s been one chaotic situation after another. I tell you, when it rains, it can most definitely pour! It feels like the kids have been in school for months! Usually, when school starts we slip immediately into a routine. Not this time. I haven’t had two days the same yet. Each day has brought something chaotic, unexpected and unwanted into my day. My calendar is continually changing and I feel like I’m lost in a maze!
The end of last week I snapped! I felt completely overwhelmed and inadequate for what was needed of me. My instinct was to run. Run far far away. This was the kind of overwhelmed feeling that ‘calgon’ couldn’t even fix.
It was the night before BSF (Bible Study Fellowship) training. This is going to be my second year as a group leader. I was literally freaking out! I told myself there was no way I could take on this kind of responsibility this year. There were too many things going on and to many unknowns. I called the BSF teaching leader and told her I couldn’t do it. I had to quit.
She listened to me explain my situation and give her all the reasons why I couldn’t continue to be a leader. She then tried to help me look outside the box at the situation in a couple different ways. That wasn’t helping. It only caused more panic. Then she began to ask me questions.
- “Did you pray at the end of last year whether or not God wanted you to be a leader again?” My reply “Yes”
- “What do you believe God’s answer was?” My reply “Yes, I had a very strong desire to be a BSF leader again.”
- “Do you believe God knew about everything that was going to happen once school started?” My reply “Yes”
- “Do you think God would have given you that desire if He didn’t want you to be a leader again?” My reply “No”
As I was being asked these questions, I realized I had expected to figure out and deal with each of these chaotic situations on my own. I knew God was there, but I wasn’t looking to Him for any answers. I was acting as if I alone had to work out my schedule, as well as everyone else’s. I assumed everyone around me had expectations of me that I didn’t think I could live up to.
I then began to remember all of the amazing things God did for me during the previous BSF year. He always gave me special pockets of time to get my study done even when I complained that I didn’t see how I would get it done because I was to busy. But that’s the key; I talked to God about it. Well, not really talk, more like complain and whine. But still, I communicated to God what I was going through and looked to him for the answers. This time I kept it all in my head and tried to figure it out myself. Why, you may ask. Well, I’m not sure, but I do feel like a stupid idiot for letting myself get all worked up about it.
Thankfully, by the end of the conversation I had with my BSF teaching leader I realized I needed to bring God back into the mix. I had some how forgotten to include Him in my chaos. I can’t tell you that things magically got better over night. There are still some chaotic things going on in my life. What I can tell you is, I feel calmer and at peace in the midst of my chaos.
I’d like to leave you with one of my favorite verses in the Bible, Romans 12:12, as our prayer for today, which God has reminded me of recently.
Be joyful in hope (Believe God is there in the midst of your chaos)
Be patient in affliction (Trust God in His timing)
Be faithful in prayer (Always talk to God)
My 10 year old son loves to ask me questions like:
Would you rather eat a cat or a dog?
Would you rather clean vomit or poop?
Would you rather get stabbed in the foot or hand?
Whose better, Batman or Spiderman?
A few weeks ago he asked me “If you could be anyone, who would you be?” After a few seconds of thinking I said “That’s easy, I would be me!” With a puzzled look on his face he asked me why I would want to be me if I could be anyone. I smiled and told him being me meant I got to be his mom and I thought that was pretty cool.
I believe God prompted my son to ask me that question that day. You see, I’ve been struggling with my place in this world lately. Questioning if I should be doing more than ‘play’ mom. I’ve been feeling less than everyone else. Feeling as if I need to be contributing more to this world.
In the moment my son asked me the question, I realized being a mom is what I enjoy. Of course I want to continue doing what I enjoy. Anything else that comes along in this lifetime is an extra perk or bonus.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying being a mom is easy or always wonderfully pleasant. It’s usually complete chaos and overly exhausting. That’s what I love most about being a mom. There’s never a dull moment. I would pick being surrounded by my family, filled with chaos and exhausted, over boredom 95% of the time. Not 100% of the time because everyone needs a break from time to time, and I do look forward to those times just as much as being thrown into the thick of it with my crazy weird family. I am the queen of crazy and weird and I am the one who taught them how to be that way.
When I say chaos I don’t mean it in a bad way….usually. I mean everyone needing something at the same time; Five things going on at once. My favorite part about being a mom is having many things to get done and figure out, knowing God has it all covered. I love seeing God work within my chaos. What’s hard is when I forget God is in the middle of it and think I have to do it all on my own.
Praise God for the moments I begin to feel alone or overwhelmed and He steps in to reassure me He is there and He loves me. By a gentle whisper, a song, a friend, a story or even my son. Isn’t it beautiful how God can change our perspective in a matter of seconds? How has God helped you see things differently recently?
“And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever” John 14:16
My prayer for us today ~ Father God, I thank you for the gift of family; mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, children and all our other family members. I pray we always remember they love us. I pray we see them through Your eyes Lord, when it feels difficult to love them, Amen.
* My answers to the above questions: Whichever is smaller; whichever is less runny; hand because I wouldn’t be able to do mommy chores for awhile; neither, Ironman rocks!