I have been thinking of you lately. You, the brand new mom feeling a bit lost in all you have had to give up. The career, the freedom and the identity you had before. You have just been given the greatest blessing of your life but it can also feel like you have become invisible to the world as you tend to the needs of this tiny little human day in and day out. You are not the same as you once were. Your body, mind and heart have all changed. I see you. I have something for you today.
To the mama who just added another child. You have done this before therefore you thought it would easy but then you were suddenly hit with the immense weight of caring for two little or maybe three or four people, whatever number you have added to your fold; it is a lot. Sure you know how to change a diaper with your eyes closed but the weight of the responsibility you have now can feel very heavy. I get it…completely. I have some encouragement for you.
And to the mama who is just really weary. The one who feels that if she has to pick up these the same toys one more time she might just explode, or the one who is drowning in laundry and all the to dos, who feels no joy, maybe not a ton of purpose…who didn’t really ever expect motherhood to be this stinkin hard. I am wrapping my arm around you. You my friend are not alone.
My oldest is coming up on 10 years old, someone pinch me. That can't be possible. I have been a mom for a decade and I have much much more to learn and I will never stop growing, but looking back I learned some things, and if I may, I would love to share with you. I am not an expert. I am not a pro, whatever that means, and I most definitely do not have it all together but I have grown closer and closer to the One who truly holds it all together and I'd like to share what I have learned at His feet.
1. Motherhood will Cost You – Before children your body was tighter, your stomach was never a home to another soul. There were no stretch marks, no dark circles under your eyes from sleepless nights. Your heart had yet to grow in the love that you carry now for your child. Scientists have actually found that our cells mix with our children’s cells and they stay with us forever, so that feeling you have of intense connection to your child is scientifically accurate and Biblically beautiful. You are meant to change when you become a mom. So “bouncing back” or “going back” to what you used to do, how you used to think or who you used to be is not the way. You are brand new. That’s hard. Motherhood costs you. Any covenant you make will cost you something. Many people don’t want to face that. So following Jesus…no thank you. Too high of a cost. Getting married? Absolutely not, I cant imagine the same person forever. Having children? Giving myself completely away, “my rights” my freedom, my body…no...too high of a price.
It’s the gospel. It’s laying yourself down for the sake of another. And it’s worth the cost. For reward is heavenly. It’s not praised or valued by our culture, but when you stop looking to the culture for your value and you seek it only with the One who died because of how valuable He sees you well then motherhood becomes an act of surrender. You see the crown He has placed on your head to raise up the next generation. That you are shepherding your flock, and you are raising up little souls that one day will have the choice to choose Jesus or to not…now that is the reality. The cost is high but so are the stakes. So like Mary and the alabaster jar, waste it all…pour it all out. What are you holding it in for? What else is there to give yourself away to?
2. Motherhood Will Sanctify You – I can’t even count how many times I will be leading my children and I hear the Father over my shoulder saying, “Yes and you too Heather.” He will use your children to teach you. “No, that’s not the best. I know you want candy for breakfast but I know what you need and that’s not it. Do you trust me?”
“Heather do you trust me? I know what you need and that’s not it.” Oh yes Father, I hear you.
I was playing a game with Paisley where I lay on the ground and she puts her tummy on my feet and I push her into the air. Airplane is what we like to call it. She has played this since she was one and now she is eight and still wants me to fly her. Well the other night she decided she wanted to sit on my feet. I said yea sure, really believing in myself that I could hold her up, she went to do it but she wouldn’t let go of the top of the bunk bed. She was pulling me to the side and with all my might I was trying to hold her. “Paisley you have to let go. I can hold you but you have to trust me.”
“But I feel safer when I am holding on.”
“I know you do, but if you can fully let go you can fly but if you keep holding on you will be stuck.”
“But I will feel out of control.”
“I know but you have to trust that I’ve got you. I can see better from my spot and I have a good grip.”
And she let go…and she got to fly. And I heard the Lord say, “Let go and you can fly too.”
Tears fell down my cheeks as I quickly realized how often I try to hold on and gain control when my Father is saying to me, “If you could see what I see you would know I have it all in My hands. You have to let go.”
Whatever it is…let go. You don’t really have control anyway.
3. You have a Choice – Before you get out of bed you get to choose how the day will go. Your baby or toddler might wake up and choose to be in a bad mood or just be fussy from the many things that are going on inside of them, but you get to choose how the day will go. And choosing the surrendered way is the best way. This past year I have surrendered to the Lord in ways I never knew were possible and the freedom I feel has changed my motherhood. It’s just not all on me anymore. This is His. I am His and He is mine. He is the Keeper of my life and the joy of the Lord is my strength. Choose to get in the Word. Choose to spend time with Jesus. But it has to be a no compromise discipline that I promise you will turn into a delight. I have never woken up before my kids to be with Jesus and thought, “Wow I regret that.” Not once. But I have chosen to stay in bed to get extra rest and have said, “I wish I would have gotten up instead of slept longer.” There is rest for the body and rest for the soul. And I have found that He will sustain your body if you go to Him to find rest for your soul. Don’t compromise your time with Him. The mundane becomes Holy if you make it about Jesus. The late night feeds become worship moments if you choose Jesus. The toddler tantrum becomes a moment to love if you choose Jesus. Oh to love Him with all our hearts and all our souls and all of our minds…it’s a choice. Don’t compromise!
I’m Heather a blessed wife and mama to four little souls who always keep me wild and free. My goal is to uplift and inspire as I share my life with you. Thanks for stopping by!