I see them everywhere.
They are all over the place — other moms.
Moms doing more than me.
They are running successful business, posting amazing blogs daily, having multiple children, cooking organically, homeschooling their children, always speaking patiently, getting up early and constantly seeking the Lord, and they are so in love and have amazing marriages.
At least that’s how it seems.
I start to compile a list in my head of all the things I don’t do well. I let my kids watch too much TV. I spend too much time on my phone. I’m just tired, why don’t I have as much energy? How can they run businesses/homeschool/write amazing blogs/do all the things they do and I can barely even make a good meal for supper?
After going through all the things that I perceive others to be doing I conclude in my head that I need to do more. I need to give up more, I need to be more patient, I need to do more crafts with my kids, I need to make better meals (I can’t believe how unhealthy my kids are!), I need to pray for them more, I need to be living in the moment more, having more fun with them, I need to get up earlier and go to bed later and just do better on less sleep.
If I just do more, I’ll be a better mom, and a better wife, and a better Christian. And everyone will love me a little bit more.
And I die a little inside, thinking of all the things I need to do to be better — the pressure crushing me.
But is that what God really wants from us? Is that all there is to being a good mom and a good Christian, a lengthy and exhausting to-do list of all the things you need to do in order to make it? Whatever happened to simply loving “the Lord your God with all your heart and all your soul and all your strength and with all your mind”?
I am constantly finding myself comparing myself to other moms, other Christians, other people. I have always looked to others for what I should be doing. If they are doing more, then there’s something wrong with me. I am failing as a person. I am a disappointment.
I want to quit looking to others, and keep my eyes focused on the Lord. Only He knows what kind of mother he wants me to be for my children. Only He knows what kind of wife he wants me to be for my husband. Only He knows what kind of servant he is creating me to be for Him. And only His opinion matters.
I am choosing not to do more. We should not be doing anything out of guilt or pressure. I am choosing to love more. May I fall deeper and deeper in love with God that my doing is a natural response to our love relationship. May the sacrifices I make for motherhood, for marriage, for life be made cheerfully and joyfully as a natural response to my love for the Lord and for no other reason.
May everything I do in my life be because of my love for the Lord, “not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver“.
And I pray that what I give and what I do may be enough for me, because if it is done out of love, it’s enough for God.