As women, I have a hard time believing that we could be as emotionally invested in anything the same we are invested in our role as a mother. And, because we are so deeply invested and committed to our children, the only way for us to raise the children we desire is to be mentally and emotionally strong and whole ourselves.
Life is busy, life is hard… it can throw the sneakiest curve balls and hide the cruelest of surprises and if we aren’t built on solid ground, we will crumble; taking our families down with us.
As mothers, we are the heartbeats of our home. We have the influence and ability to either build up or tear down our own homes and families. That’s heavy, right? That’s a lot of responsibility and enough pressure to send you running for the hills. Or, it should! When life is good and we’re on the upswing, it’s generally easy to encourage the men in our lives, celebrate and enjoy our children, and live with an authentic smile on our faces. It’s when we hit a rut, especially a rut that lasts longer than we would prefer, that we begin to crumble. There’s less peace and more strife, less enthusiasm and more frustration, less building and more tearing down – of everyone in the home.
It’s kind of obvious that strong bodies that are vibrant and full of life have strong, healthy hearts and the inverse would be just as true; weaker, less in shape bodies have hearts that aren’t able to withstand much physical exertion. When our hearts are weak, the energy and effort that is often needed to complete day-to-day tasks to the best of our abilities is not there. Strong hearts, like strong muscles, are built over time with consistent exercise and hard work. Being that life-giving lifeline is some pretty hefty work. If we aren’t strong women (with gentle, quiet, peaceful spirits!!!) we can’t peacefully and joyously endure hard work with hope. If our hearts aren’t strong and if we aren’t focused on the right things, we can’t get through the toughest of workouts smiling and high off of endorphins. Without a strong heart, we won’t believe that the work and discipline is good and beneficial for us. Just as strengthening our hearts requires acknowledgement that there is a need for change, desiring wisdom requires humility and acknowledging the fact that we have some junk that preventing us from being just that.
Does anyone want to admit their brokenness or that they have junk that needs to be worked out and hurts they need help healing? Of course not. We are too committed to portraying picture of perfection, meanwhile we’re ruining relationships in our home and passing those same issues we despise to our children. We’re lashing out at our families because we’re frustrated and tired. I mean, honestly, who wants to be that mother who doesn’t seem as if she has it all together?? I’ll be the first to raise my hand. None of us do. But, I believe I can be truthful with myself while doing the best I can to keep myself together and enduring the yuck.
Mamas, life is cuh-razy. No one is free from hardship and if you’re a Christian thirsting for the Lord, lace up your tennis shoes and prepare for a pretty tough workout. You’ve signed up for the CrossFit games, ok?
Wise women build their homes, wise women are respected and their words received. Wise women help nuture and mature those around her. That type of woman is a joy to be around. Younger, less experienced women flock to and sit at the feet of these women because they know they will learn so much from them.
Seriously, y’all, some heavy storms have made their way through Mayestown and if I’ve learned nothing else, it is that fearing the Lord is not enough. Desiring to obey and honor God with your life is not enough to carry you through with hope. This is synonymous with setting the goal of completing a craft and either not putting in enough work, not asking someone who’s an experienced crafter for help, or just leaving all of the purchased supplies in a corner of a room. You can have everything you need to succeed, you can read your Bible and pray, but, if you aren’t dealing with your junk there isn’t much that’s going to change from the core. We have to deal with our issues and mature as women so that we can get through the hard stuff without losing our minds in the process. No one sprays perfume after finishing an intense workout! We shower and clean ourselves up so that the perfume will enhance versus losing the battle to stink. We all know, no matter how much perfume or air freshener you use to mask a foul smell – that stink will soon overcome the scent intended to conceal it. Same concept.
I thank God so much for all of the junk because I’m a stronger, more peaceful, less explosive woman/mama. I’ve learned to trust what God is doing even when things initially look bleak. All things work together for our own good!! We benefit from growing through difficult seasons. It’s a bonus that everyone around us benefits from who we’re becoming, too. Because of my own growth, my girls will be able to now learn how to maneuver through difficulty with grace, hope, and joy. They’ll experience a joyful mama who will be able to teach them well and we’ll have a real, authentic relationship with them. They’ll in turn experience a joyful environment and pass that on to their children.
Mamas, we can’t mother well if we aren’t well ourselves. We can’t be all God called us to be if the fruits of the Spirit’s growth is stifled by anger, malice, bitterness, and impatience. We like to hide all of the yucky stuff. We blame our tempers on the situation when they bubble to the surface. It’s not our circumstances, y’all. It’s us. That’s hard to accept. When you’re knee deep in a less than pleasant situation, when you’re mistreated, when you’re just having a hard time, it’s hard to believe that our baggage that is fueling how we handle our circumstances is the problem. We’re focusing so much on our situation and not putting enough emphasis on our God. We aren’t responding to difficulty as if we believe God can heal our broken hearts and that we can be redeemed from our brokenness so that we can be whole and new. But, believe it, sisters. Healing can happen, but it’s impossible to do on your own. We can do a lot of things ourselves, we’re Queens of Multitasking, but we cannot walk ourselves through hurt to get to wholeness.
Mothering in the confusion and chaos of a fallen world, holding bitterness and anger in our hearts is a disaster that only breeds more anger, contempt, and hurt. But, mothering in chaos with a heart set on Jesus and moving toward healing brings peace and joy. That peace allows us to guide our emotions and invest them where we can get an amazing return – happy, joyful children and joy filled homes.
// Hey, y'all! I'm a wife and new mama of twin girls who lives in the great state of Texas!! I share a ton of my thoughts and lessons learned over at UnashamedGrowth and pictures of my life looks like over on Instagram (@amayes)! I'd love to connect with you! Join me on this journey!||