The hardest question a Mom has to answer…

Mother-Juggling-Work-Child

To be employed (full-time or part-time), or not to be employed, that is the question…

This is somewhat of a hot-button question, I know.

It hits hard-core.

It’s a difficult question either way.

Both come with their sets of pros and cons.

Sometimes there is a choice, sometimes there is not.

Sometimes there are seasons for one or the other, and then it changes.

Either way, it’s a uniquely answered question.

Mostly because each family is unique.

And therein lies the beauty… if we can see it that way.

Our first child was born in October.  I was teaching at the time, and planned to return in January.  We were blessed with a friend who lived very near our home who was staying home with a daughter just three months older than our son.  It worked for us.  At the time, I was ready to return to work.  I enjoyed my job.  I enjoyed the joys of motherhood.  I seemed to be able to focus on my job while at school.  And then focus my energies on my growing boy when I returned home.

Our second child was born in the month of May.  This schedule was a bit easier.  I didn’t need to return to work until September.  But nothing was easy about it.  I found myself crying.  A lot.  A sense of depression and despair overtook me by sheer surprise as the days winded down.  I returned to work, now having an infant and a toddler, and everything was out of whack.  Sure, I made it through the day, and then I would cry on the way home.  I didn’t get it, but I knew something was about to change.  I decided to step away from the career I loved… for a time.  Perhaps I would return that following January.

But I didn’t, and the journey that transpired until now has been life transforming.

This school year finds me back in the throws of teaching.  And admittedly, my heart has been attempting to find a place of contentment.  I’m there in body and mind, not so much in spirit.  Some days are good.  Some moments are great.  But mostly, I’ve learned to appreciate something very basic, maybe even something I’ve taken for granted – the blessing, privilege, honor, and greatest joy in my role as a wife and a Mom.  Over this Christmas break, I’ve watched my feelings, thoughts, and actions confirm to me over and over where my heart lies.

So what does this mean?  Sometimes questions take a bit longer to answer.  I’ve been pressing in closer and closer to the heart of my heavenly Father in pouring out my soul and listening to his heartbeat.  And He tells me this…

 3Trust in the Lord and do good;
dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
Take delight in the Lord,
and he will give you the desires of your heart.

And I think… the desires of my heart have changed over the years.  His desires for me have become my desires.  If He’s given me this soul stirring, He’s directing that.  And I can trust it.  I can trust Him.

And He has given me a husband who MORE than supports my desires for our family.  He’s encouraged me, spoken words of appreciation, and has given me space and patience in my silent times of searching.

Now it’s a matter of taking that step.  The next step.  Whatever that next step is.  And trusting.  And moving forward with tremendous joy and gratitude.  I have been given more than I will ever deserve.  God loves me madly and has provided a way for me to have an eternity with him.  How can I not give Him all the glory?  I want to enjoy what I do.  I want to give 110%.  I want to love well.  The rest is just details…

We, as a society, need great teachers.  We need great doctors.  We need great crossing-guards.  We need great trash collectors.  We each are uniquely crafted for the love of something.  I found myself smirking at thoughts of my “loves” lately, and years ago I would never have guessed what my answers would be.  I want to do my “loves” and want to do them with excellency.  Because if I’m following my desires, I have a soul satisfaction of completing His plan.  Nothing beats that.

What “loves” has He given to you?  Are you able to do them with excellency?  If not, why not?

How can I pray for you?

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4 thoughts on “The hardest question a Mom has to answer…

  1. Heather,
    I Loved What You Shared. I Love Even More That You Did So By Baring Your Heart And Soul So Honestly To Someone Like Me That Reads Your Blog. Often Times I Go To Read Your Blog Praying That Something You Have Shared Will Fit Into The Place Where I Am At In My Own Life Right Now.
    I Don’t Know Why I Am So Amazed At The Goodness Of Our God…I Read Your Blog And Kind Of Giggled At God’s Sense Of Humor. 🙂 I Have Been Really Struggling With What To Do With My Life Now That Stephen Is Reaching His Last Weeks Of His Senior Year, And Soon To Be 18 Yrs. Old.
    I Have Been So TRULY BLESSED To Be Able To Have Been A Stay At Home Single Mom The Majority Of My Son’s School Yrs. Homeschooling Was Never Even A Question…It Just Seemed Like The Right Thing To Do. We Have No Regrets. But So Much Has Happened Over The Last 12 Yrs To Keep Me From Doing What I Truly Love To Do Outside Of Being A Mom.
    Apparently God Has Other Plans As To What He Wants To Do With My Life…But I Am Not Exactly Sure Just What That Is Just Yet So We Continue To Pray, And We Pray That God Shows Us The Way By Opening The Right Doors For Us To Walk Through. So Much Of What Both My Son And I Want To Do With Our Lives Is Headed In the Same Direction. So Much So that It May Be That We Can Combine What We Both Want To Do…TOGETHER. What We Both Want IS Definitely Going To BE A Ministry Of Hospitality, And The Creation Of Food In Some Sort Of Fashion. I Know…Surprise Surprise!! Both My Son And I Love To Be In The Kitchen, And We Both Love To Help People, And Animals, And Yes, Sometimes We Are Known For Taking In What Others See As “Stray People”, Looking For A Place To Begin Again To Get On Their Mark, And Start Over.
    So I Am Not Exactly Sure Where God Is Leading Us…But I Know We Are Both Open To What He Has For Us. Thanks So Much For Sharing your Heart So Open And Honestly.

  2. Thanks for the thoughtful insight, Heather! This too is something that I have been giving much thought to recently. What does God have for me next? Am I finished with what He has for me now? Now that the kids are mostly grown and do not need me as much or in the same way as they use to, is it time for me to start looking for a new/next adventure? It is so neat to see how He has been preparing me all these years for things that I never would have imagined! He’s good like that! Considering the possibilities, everything looks so exciting, but if that is not where He wants me or perhaps not right now, I do not want to be there. At times, I feel a guilt about even thinking about enjoying something away from who I have been for the past 20 years. Sometimes I stop and think about what I am considering and wonder what I would have thought about it 10 years ago….But I agree that God changes our hearts at the right time–His timing is always so perfect! It never ceases to amaze me how He puts us in different situations to set us up to take our next step with Him. So thankful for that! So my friend, I too am desiring and seeking after God’s heart in similar ways and where He might be leading. I will be praying for you as well, as you continue to seek after Him!

    Thank you so much for this post–it’s just what I needed today! I am so blessed to call you my Friend!

    • Thank you, from the depth of my heart, for sharing my darling friend! I love to hear about timely words He places through others in our lives. If He’s directing you, go for it girl, that’s the fun part of all the adventures! I am praying for you right at this moment… may you know it, live it, and trust it!!

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