All around me, I see other moms doing “it” better – motherhood, their relationship with their spouse, their many friends, the clean house, the happy noises of their children, life. I get on social media and get depressed pretty quickly as image after image pass before my eyes. I see the fun family crafts all neatly hung on a cute board, the children running around outside laughing with joy and excitement, and the neatly organized family room set up to be well-utilized and enjoyed by child and adult alike. As I look toward my little ones watching TV for the third time that day, my brain searches for an excuse as to why I’m using it as a babysitter. Each excuse that enters my brain falls flat as my heart spurns judgement on itself – “you’re a failure,” it seems to whisper, “you are a failure, and you will never get ‘it’ right.”
If a friend were to say this to you, what would be the first thing that you would tell them? It can seem so simple when we speak the truth to others, but so difficult to speak that same truth to ourselves.
The comparison game is a dangerous one to play.
It leads to bitterness, resentment, apathy, despondency, and discouragement. It is allowing the lies of Satan to mess with your womanly gifts that seek to nurture, and turns you against yourself. It distracts you from God and what He is calling you to in that moment.
In those moments, it is easy to forget that you belong to God, and that He has called you to this very moment in time. However, instead of looking at how everyone else is doing ‘it’ better, He wants you to focus on what He is calling you to and how He’s calling you to do the task at hand. Satan wants you to believe that your personal difficulties and limitations keep you from being a good mom, but that is a lie that keeps you feeling like nothing can be done about it. God has equipped you well for this task. Trust that God has not put you in an impossible situation, and do your best with what He has called you to in each moment. Remember that God isn’t just at church on Sundays. He is right there with you in your home. Speak to Him in these moments, and ask Him to give you the strength to move forward.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13
As you move forward, it is important to take even the daily matters and going ons of your household to prayer. A good way to start is by understanding who our Lord has created you to be. That is – your personality, your temperament, your experiences, etc. Ask God for this insight. Who are you, and what are your strengths and weaknesses? It is by developing a greater awareness of this that you can make decisions about your family life with greater confidence. It helps you understand how you need to structure your day, so that it flows more smoothly. Developing this awareness helps you to see where you can give yourself some slack and where you need to be more disciplined. As you do this, it will become easier to understand and focus on what God is calling you to instead of getting distracted with what others are doing.
“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10
Satan will continue to try to distract you from your focus. When that happens, put your trust in God. Trust that He will bring good out of your sincere efforts even when you are not sure if it is doing any good. There will be moments that test you to your core. Ask God for strength in those moments, pray for faith when you start to question, and pray for hope when you start to get discouraged, and then trust that He is carrying you when you don’t think you can continue to move forward.
“What is Apollos, after all, and what is Paul? Ministers through whom you became believers, just as the Lord assigned each one. I planted, Apollos watered, but God caused the growth. Therefore, neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who causes the growth. The one who plants and the one who waters are equal, and each will receive wages in proportion to his labor. For we are God’s co-workers; you are God’s field, God’s building.” 1 Corinthians 3:5-9
Do you fully believe that God causes the growth of what you plant in this life? What is distracting you from this truth?
You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. Isaiah 26:3
As you focus on moving forward grounded in Christ and His love for you and your family, remember these four things:
- Train your mind and your heart
- Do you need a break from social media?
- Do you need to spend more time filling your mind with the truths of scripture?
- Understand what is holding you back from applying yourself as you would like to?
- Do you feel like you are lacking in time, money, talents, or something else?
- Know that you are not lacking in anything for God to work in you.
- What can you do today to share the love of Christ with your children?
- Lead by example and be encouraging.
- Trust God with the rest.