Welcome to Day #11 in the Intentional Mothering series:
There is still time to enter Day #10’s giveaway, for a $40 Premier Designs gift certificate! We will select a winner in a few days. The winner of the 10 handmade cards from Memories by Martha (from Day #8) is Jeannette; congratulations to you!
I am really excited that my sis-in-law is sharing with you today. Martha is a wonderful person and fairly new mommy; waiting for and raising her miracle has grown her in many ways already. She strives to please the Lord and serve her family well in this incredible endeavor. Join her as she shares her heart and encourages us to address our weaknesses, so we can truly give our best.
My New Job: Motherhood
Our church started a season of fasting; giving something up to gain a new perspective and prayer for God’s direction in our lives. My son, Riley, was 5 months old at that time. The thought of giving up anything and spending lots of “extra” time in prayer was completely overwhelming. I did not have any extra time or mental strength to give anything up. I was tired, glad to be home, enjoying not having any commitments, and happy to have the TV remote all day long! What a bonus for being able to stay home. I got to spend the day with the cutest little guy in the world, see my husband more and watch all the HGTV and DIY network shows I could find. Life was awesome.
As I started to think about why I did not have any extra time to “fast and pray”, I realized that more than having a child at home to care for, I was hooked on watching my new shows (that I never got to watch while I had a career outside the home). Even though I was really tired and found myself very busy at home, there was time I could carve out to reflect on what God wanted to do with my life and my time. I knew (deep breath) I had to give up TV for this church fast. I just did not want to because I had grown so fond of laughing and crying and getting great ideas from all my “friends” on TV.
Honestly, I still got out quite a bit and hung out with other people. I just recorded the shows and watched them later. Regardless of when I was watching TV, it was just too consuming, and I needed to find balance. During my 30 day fast from TV (no TV from 8am-5pm) I began to reflect on what example I wanted my son and future children to see in me.
I want my children to…
*See me read the Bible and hear me pray and worship God at home
*Know that I love my husband and show him respect
*See me exercise and participate with me (when able)
*See me cook, eat, and serve the family healthy foods
*Know that I am responsible and trustworthy and that I work hard to complete tasks
*Hear me laugh a lot and see me having fun (with others and with our family)
*See me enjoy restful and relaxing times; that I can “be still”
*Know that I am compassionate, giving, and kind to others
* See me model humility and show the ability to admit wrongs and ask for forgiveness
*Overall, I want my children to see that I have balance in my life
Throughout the fast period I was able to find time to “be still” (and quiet) in order to pray and read the Bible. Nothing crazy, but it was possible to choose to be a wife and mother first before choosing to satisfy my own desire to watch TV (and feel justified in doing so because I had been denied TV while I was working outside the home).
My son and I developed new routines and habits including reading books, and playing more together, and sitting outside watching cars drive by. I began using my time more effectively to get laundry and dishes done on a regular basis and going grocery shopping –before the fridge was empty. It was difficult for me to think about having downtime and time for my hobbies now that I was feeling the gratification of getting the house clean, working out, cooking more frequently, and getting more involved with other moms.
My husband reminded me though to build in some downtime and time for hobbies. He said those times are part of finding balance too. The fast season concluded and I decided to keep TV watching to a minimum. I am so grateful for that season and that it jump-started a new way of thinking for me. I began thinking of Motherhood as my new “job”.
I need to stay focused and be efficient with my time and opportunities. Also, I need to be able to relax and take a joke from a co-worker (my spouse). I need to understand the expectations and responsibilities that go with the job title and how to successfully, to the best of my ability, complete each task and role required for the position. Motherhood is an amazing blessing full of great joys… and it is also very difficult; a constant learning experience.
Allow your children to see you learn, develop, and enjoy your job. This is, by far, the most rewarding position I have ever held. I am blessed and thankful to be called “Mom”.
For me, taking away the constant flooding of television into my home brought more peace and calm and, therefore, I was able to experience life more fully. I still catch a show here and there during the day when my son is napping and I watch a show on days when I am exhausted. I have just decided not to allow something other than God rule my days. I look forward to my next promotion… when the Lord allows us to have baby #2! More responsibility, even greater joys, immense grace, and more humbling opportunities to learn and advance in my career. God is faithful and just and He gives strength to the humble.
Lord, help us all succeed as mothers in loving our children and our families to the best of our abilities. All for God’s glory.
Learning all the time and loving my new job,
Martha, of Memories by Martha, is a beautiful, spirit-led
woman. She is a talented dancer, a creative crafter and blanket
designer, grills delicious pesto chicken, and has a heart that feels deeply. She is married to a great guy and is the mother of a sweet, full of life, little boy. Martha loves Jesus and seeks to know Him and make Him known.
1. Is there something that occupies your time more than it should in your life? Perhaps TV, or perhaps something else…try taking it away for a period of time and check your reaction to its absence.
2. Do you get dressed for work (for motherhood)? Not just with clothes, but with the armor of God and the attitude of Christ? If you aren’t dressed in this way, stop and ask God to help you right now. With Him you can do the hard things of motherhood and learn to enjoy the journey in a greater way!