“For your unfailing love is higher than the heavens. Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.”
(Psalms 108:4 NLT)
At this time last year I was still committed to home daycare with no end in sight. I had a daily roster of 5 kids plus my own. My daily mantra was just get through till nap time. The constant day in and day out routine took a toll; on my house and my heart. When I felt weary I just kept telling myself to dig in deeper…die to my selfish desires and just power through. After all, I was being a good Christian wife! I was home, contributing to the finances in a way that would leave me still able to run my household smoothly and efficiently.
Except for it never really worked out that way. Most days I couldn’t even go upstairs at ALL until after the kids had all gone home. The laundry just NEVER seems done in my house, even now. Everything would just pile up. The cleaning that I scheduled myself to do on certain days ( that was beyond the daily dishes/upkeep I was doing constantly) more likely was saved for the weekends if at all. I would scour Pinterest on how to organize and manage my home. I ordered multiple e-books on the matter that glorified being the “keeper of the home” and usually the Proverbs 31 woman. I chatted with friends about how to budget, menu plan, organize, schedule, budget, menu plan, organize, schedule, budget, menu plan, organize…you get the picture. Always coming up short in the expectations I was setting for myself, always left feeling like I wanted more which always led to feeling so guilty. Didn’t I have it all?
Having become a Christian when I was 17 and not being raised in a Christian home, I had ( and STILL HAVE) a strong desire to create a kind of atmosphere in my home that is centered on faith and family. I want to get it right. Right? I have found that at retreats and women’s ministry events I feel out of place. Like an imposter. Even in the women’s section at Christian bookstores it seems specifically geared toward a certain kind of woman. The books are jacketed with covers of pastel colors and flowers. Paisley prints and pictures of warm steaming coffee mugs. So with a definite picture in my head of what a “right” Christian woman should be, I set out to train myself and make
myself fit the mold. Ultimately it led to why I even started this blog to begin with ( read my first post here:
Trying to be someone else led to depression. Self loathing and a downward spiral of continual failure.
There are lots of women who thrive in these ways and are blessed by that kind of stuff, but I am not the pastel, paisley mommy stitching to the tune of a hymn.
I am tattooed. I like listening to everything from hard core to rap. I say bad words sometimes. Most times. Sometimes I get mad. Blurred vision, italian rage, crazy mad!
I have real life, ugly issues to deal with like lust, temptation, and gossip. Gluttony.
Slavery to my food addiction.
All unflattering to talk about openly…certainly not pretty and feminine. Certainly not gracing the covers of any books at the Christian bookstore.
Could it be that maybe God knows this and loves me anyway? That His love really is unfailing and stretches further and further beyond what I could ever imagine? That His faithfulness reaches past all my attempts and fitting a mold and sets me free to just be me. His creation? His daughter.
I’m set to go to a spring retreat this weekend with the ladies from my church. I’m hoping to have a great time and learn something new. I am going to have a good attitude and an open mind…but I’m not going to allow myself to fall into the trap of feeling “less than” because I don’t fit a mold.
I am so grateful that my life looks different now than it did a year ago. God has softened my heart on a lot of issues and is stretching me in many more ways than I could have guessed. For the first time in my grown up life I feel good about myself and confident in who God created me to be. Even with a messy house.