O Lord, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Psalm 139: 1-3 (NIV)Becoming the mom I always wanted to be has been a long, almost 14 year process, and there are still many days when I’m not there. Like most moms, I feel like I should do more, fuss less, listen better and be able to meet all of my kids’ needs, flitting from one task (or child) to another with a smile on my face, energy in my soul, clarity in my thoughts and Bible verses on my lips.
I can’t live up to that image of perfection but what I can do is take steps towards becoming the mom I really want to be!
One of my biggest challenges is being too busy and getting overwhelmed. When our schedule gets too full and things feel out of control, I slip into micro-management task-mode. Sometimes I lose sight of my most important calling – being a mom! I get over committed to people or projects outside of our home, and my kids start to feel like interruptions. Or I let them get over committed and our days become a blur. When the day finally ends, I lay in bed wishing I could rewind time and do things differently. Days and weeks and years pass so quickly. To be the mom I want to be, I have to capture the moments when they come.
I learned this important lesson a few years ago. One night my family was all snuggled on the couch watching a movie. We were spending quality time together but then I got distracted. I was still there physically but I started returning phone calls and emails mentally. I glanced at the clock to see how many hours before the kids went to bed and noticed the silhouette of my son’s face. He looked so grown up. How quickly ten years had passed! I thought. I knew it wouldn’t be long before he’d be counting down the hours until I go to bed, so he could hang out with his friends. Suddenly, I recognized the gift of being with the ones I love while they’re still with me.
Jesus knew His time on earth was limited and that tasks weren’t that important, in the big scheme of things. My time with my kids at home and this season of life with my husband is passing. Every time I read about Jesus’ life, I am challenged to slow down and spend more time with my family and friends. He valued people so much!!!
Reading my Bible reminds me of how important they are to me, too. Psalm 139 guards my heart from guilt because it reminds me that God made me, He understands me, and knows how easily I get tangled up in my to-do list or slip into task-mode. He's the One who can make me more like Him. That is why take my desire and my struggle to daily, spend time in His Word and ask for His help. It’s through sweet reminders like my son’s silhouette that He helps me see my family as my greatest treasure and my time with them as my most important investment.
- I look into their faces and remember what they used to look like. That helps me grasp how quickly time flies.
- I think back to what life was like without them. That jolts my memory; making me thankful God gave them to me.
- I imagine the day they won’t be with me - the day they’ll live in another place with their own family.
- I remind myself that “to do lists” will always be here, but the ones I love won’t.
- I look for opportunities to listen, love on and lead our conversation towards a spiritual truth if the door opens – not preaching to them, but lovingly teaching God’s word in everyday moments.
What about you? Is it ever hard for you to live in the moment with your kids? What are some ways you do or could start being with the ones you love…no agendas, no errands, no planning…just being? Let’s make a pact today to slow down just a little and look for chances to be the mom we've always want to be!
If you'd like a reminder each time I post, click on bloglines in my sidebar. We'll be giving away gifts every day, so be sure to come back for more mom encouragement and resources from D6 and Proverbs 31 Ministries!
For more encouragement in slowing down to be with our kids, read a great devotion today on the P31 site by Sandy Cooper, "Her Children Arise and Call Her Busy."