Whose number one in MY life?

So my mistakes are many and my flaws are great.  I am human and find it so hard to find strengths within myself.   It’s not that I dont think I have them but rather that I feel like my weaknesses are so great that they outweigh my strengths.

Lately I have felt quite selfish.  Not in the usual sense of the word, but rather in the Mommy sense of the word.  Those of you who have kids or have spent much time with kids might fully understand what I mean here.  I stay home with my kids; they are awake from about 7 am to 7 p.m.   Out of those twelve hours they nap about 3 or so.  That leaves 9 hours of parenting time.  While they do play some together without me, I do have to constantly jump in to handle a situation or two (sharing is a serious issue in our house right now).  The few bits of undisturbed time I do have I end up spending keeping the house clean (dishes, laundry, general pick-up and put away, the usual).  So really the only time I get to myself when the kids dont need me and the house can wait is nap time.  Though the past several days I havent even had that because the kiddos havent been napping well.

So that leaves me feeling, “What about me?”  Do you ever feel like you are disappearing?  Sometimes I feel like I am just Mommy or Wife but rarely Margaret.  I suppose that is why I cherish Ladies Bible Class; it is one of the few times I can just be a woman among other women rather than a Mom or Wife.  I dont mind being a Mom or Wife — I love those jobs – but they are filled with so much responsibility that sometimes it leaves me feeling emotionally overwhelmed and physically, mentally and emotionally exhausted.  I feel like I work 24/7 with very few breaks to just be me and do what I want to do.  You know?

This isnt really a complaint, mind you.  I knew when I signed up for this job (Wife and Mom) that I would be consumed by the job and someday emerge again years later when my kids have grown and I can just enjoy being a Wife and woman.  I just never imagined it to be so completely consuming.

I think Christianity can be that way sometimes.  We join the race for Heaven thinking it is simple: obey the gospel and receive forgiveness for our sins and salvation from Hell.  But it doesnt stop there, does it?  It consumes you.  You are crucified with Christ and you no longer live but Christ lives in you and the life you now live in the flesh you live by faith in the Son of God.  Meaning you are, in some way, dead.  You sacrifice your entire being, making yourself a living sacrifice to God, “holy and pleasing”.  It is a life-long, self improvement process, never stopping your service, growth and of course all out of love. This is as it should be.  I found a verse used in a recent sermon so inspiring that I wrote it out to post on my wall:

1 Corinthians 15:55-58 (NIV)
”Where, O Death, is your victory?
Where, O Death, is your sting?”
The Sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.  But thanks be to God!  He gives us victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore stand FIRM.  Let nothing move you.  Always give yourself fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.”

I find this verse encouraging because I see my dual life as Wife and Mother as a service to the Lord.  This verse encourages me to give myself fully to that service, realizing my sacrifice is not in vain.  All I can really do is my best and pray that God do the rest and fill in the gaps that my mistakes leave behind.

So those days – or even years – when I spend all my time parenting and keeping house I try to recognize that its alright; its not in vain.  I can always scrapbook the kids baby pictures for them when they get married as a wedding present.  Until then I will enjoy my kids rather than the pictures.

Bear in mind that these are the ramblings of a tired woman at 3:30 AM.  Why am I awake?  Im not too sure.  The past several days have been exceptionally stressful and I have found it very hard to sleep.  My mind has been racing at night, too, which really doesnt help.

So maybe now I can sleep since I got some stuff off my mind.  Good nite and good morning. 😛

x ❤ X

Marriage is like Chemistry

In chemistry there are some chemicals that, when mixed together, create a strong but important reaction.  Baking soda and vinegar will bubble when mixed together but they clean quite nicely!  Not being a chemist, I am unsure of other mixtures but I know they exist.  What I find interesting about this is that chemists will mix two chemicals together simply to get the reaction for a specific purpose. Is that not what marriage is like?

Take my parents for example:  they are complete opposites.  My mother is charming, sweet, gentle, extremely and sometimes delusionally optimistic, and can love almost any sinner despite their sin.  My Dad, on the other hand, is somewhat abrasive yet honest, intellectual and analytical, silently loving, and a pessimistic realist.  For years they argued, yelled, banged doors and cupboards, and threats of leaving were made while children hid in their rooms hoping they were just threats. But both of them grew like perfectly fertilized plants and now they are a happy couple.  Mom said the other day, “I don’t remember a time when I wasn’t happy with your dad.” (Granted, she is sometimes delusionally optimistic, so maybe that is it.)

Sometime me and my husband, Presten, will get into big arguments.  It is usually about something important because we talk out the little stuff without a fuss.  But when it comes to the big stuff both of us are so sure we are right that the only way to solve it is to yell and fight it out.  Eventually, the wrong one will see the err of their ways and admit so to the right one.  But sometimes these arguments take months or even years.  I am convinced, though, – despite all of our arguments and frustrations – that Presten is without a single doubt in my mind the most perfect man for me; not perfect completely in himself, mind you, but perfect for me.  Sure he leaves his clothes lying around sometimes, he rarely cleans up his beard shavings, and I have to nag him to clean the toilet sometimes.  He several flaws but am I not flawed myself?  I curse and yell when barely angry.  I take my shoes off and leave them where they lie.  I almost never make the bed.  I love cleaning, but often lack the motivation to start so sometimes the house is a complete mess.  Does he complain?  Does he yell at me or fuss at me?  Does he ever say I am a lousy wife?? Nope.  In fact, the only thing he has ever done is say gently, “Honey, I would really appreciate it if you would do some laundry.  I wore my last pair of underwear today.”

So I shouldn’t complain, because he doesn’t complain.  The worst thing, though, is the inability to make him see my way.  That may sound funny and make you laugh, but let me explain.  There have been times that I have Bible verses and/or scientific research, and interviews with people who know and have experience, but he is arguing because “it makes sense to me”, or some other nonsensical reasoning.  Yet he will not admit that maybe, just maybe, he is wrong.  And sometimes these arguments, despite my good foundation, take days, months, or years to convince him and it is so very frustrating to both of us.  But eventually he does come around and when he does he admits that he was being bull-headed and had no foundation for his standing.  I guess the whole problem is that I can change cold turkey — just drop my old ways and pick up new ones like that.  I learned it from my mom.  But Presten needs time to adjust to the idea of change, then time to adjust to the beginning of change, then he will start to change and be unsure and hold off.  But when he decides he needs to change, he does change and permanently.  So I guess I should be grateful that, unlike many husbands that I have heard about, he does change.  He has learned to put his pocket things in a bowl when he gets home, to help clean up the table either after dinner or at least before bed, and to cuddle me at night before we go to sleep.  He never smokes, doesn’t desire drugs or alcohol, has never hit me or abused me, understands when I say “not tonight honey” and is always as loving as he can be.  He’s a good guy, even if he is bull-headed.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want a male version of a “yes wife”.  When he has a sound foundation with Bible verses and/or research etc I listen, I change, I may argue a little… but I do change.  I just don’t like it when he stands on a faulty foundation, that’s all.  Don’t stand there and tell me you are right if you have nothing to back it.  You cannot tell me I have to change my beliefs when your beliefs have no basis!  It is foolishness!

So I will pray for him that when he has no foundation he will see it.  But I will also pray for myself that, even when I am right, I will have patience and love and not yell, argue or be mean.  I will patiently love him and pray for his change.  If God can “turn the heart” of people in the Bible, he sure can change my husband.  And if Jesus can maintain his temper and be loving toward the Pharisees then I can be loving toward the wonderful man that is my husband, even when he is bull-headed.

Super Mom
Not acting very super today. 😮

No Greater Joy

I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.
3 John 4

I have committed myself to being a Super Mom – lead by the Holy Spirit and guiding my children using principles from the Bible.  It is a hard road, one that requires constant change.  I cannot sit idle as my house becomes a mess, nor can I sit idle when I learn new truths that require a choice: to change or ignore.  As I shared in my last post, I have found a new source of wisdom, one that draws from the Bible: nogreaterjoy.org (ngj).

After spending nearly all day reading everything on that site that I thought might pertain to me, my brain hurts but my heart is joyful and excited.  I look forward to the changes taking place in me and my family.  I believe that being a wife and mom should be a joy, though lately it has been nothing but a chore for me.  My husband and I have commitment issues – not to each other, but to our word.  Our word means very little; we say, “I will…” but do not.  It is a frustrating and unintentional issue.  I have made it my goal to be trustworthy and reliable in my word, letting my “yes be yes and my no be no.” But my husband has not made that choice yet and it has made our marriage frustrating at times.  Additionally, my children have taken on fighting with each other, among other things.  As for myself, my health is failing in a most uncomfortable way and it makes me feel unwilling to rise and meet the day.

Yet reading these articles on the ngj website have renewed my strength and made me joyful of the changes to come.

I pray that God will guide me as I work to change my focus and share with my husband the views I suggest we change.  I also pray that God guide me as I work to improve my health, so that I made succeed in being as Super as possible, not feeling a pull to be idle due to discomfort and fatigue.

(It is not a matter of not knowing WHAT to do for my health, but more a matter of DOING IT!)

Please, reader, keep me in your prayers also.  The prayers of fellow believers are a great gift.

God help me.

Super Mom