Photo Credit: Kasey Erin
I’ve done a lot of self searching this last week. I’ve spent a lot of time reading Christian literature (pick up Hope Unfolding by Becky Thompson and Pressing Pause if you haven’t.)
I had many revelations, a few I’ve shared on my Personal Instagram and Facebook, and many more I’ve written down into my journal. I spend a lot of my days worried about whether or not I’m doing a good enough job showing my children how much I love Jesus. I’m not. Never mind how badly I fail at it day-to-day with others I encounter. If I’m being honest.
You see, I spend a lot of time in my life being an “excuse monster.” I heard this term on a team building excercise with my company. Let me tell you what it means.
It means you make an excuse for everything.
You probably do it, too. It’s okay. The first step is to own it.
With my team, it was used to point out the excuses we make with our business.
- We don’t have many sales because everyone else has bigger groups
- We don’t have time to do a live sale every week
- We just don’t have good enough inventory to pull together outfits
My life is so full.
- I should really read my Bible, but I’m too tired.
- I only lost my temper because they have been told a million times not to _____________
- He’s tired?! I’m the one that had to run this circus today.
- I should lead a Bible study with mama’s my age. No one would participate.
- What if I invited ladies over for fellowship? This house is crazy. Who am I kidding.
I spend a lot of my time praying that God would just deliver me to my reward. 15 years from now. (Don’t burst my bubble. I have so much hope in my children to need less of me).
Pressing Pause pointed out that we should stop saying “God, get me out of here.” And start asking Him, “God, why have you brought me here?”
Where I am, right now, buried in diapers, potty training, wakeful nights, early mornings, bottles, and no peace and quiet. That’s where He brought me. This is the beautiful mess He has blessed me with, and what would I lose if he plucked me out of this?
I would lose out on the opportunity to teach my children about the love of Jesus. About His strength and majesty. About His promises to me, and them, and every single soul.
Matthew 5:9 says, “blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called the children of God.”
What happens to a child when their mama walks in the room?
Weeping and gnashing of teeth. That’s what.
What does your husband say? “Babe, they were so good the whole time. I don’t understand why they behave like this the moment you get home.”
I know why. I’m not a peacemaker, friends.
I’m a chaos creator.
You know what makes that stressed out, frazzled, crazy woman turn into a kind and gentle soul who lovingly corrects her children? Jesus.
It’s about time I stop blaming my reactions on my situation. It’s about time I stopped wishing myself out of the circus I live in with all of the monkeys I made. It’s about time I stopped making excuses for why my behavior is everyone else’s fault.
It’s not about how people treat you. It’s not about the words that they say. We are responsible for our own actions and reactions.
When I sit down with my savior every day and remind myself of His unconditional love I am better prepared to hand it out to everyone around me. (It doesn’t have to be in the morning. I’m still filled up from the night before. Or during lunch. Or at the playground. Stop making excuses.) I’m ready to tackle the day because I know I have the ultimate defender on my team. I know that He knows the plans for my day and I know that they are good. Because He is good.
I know that it’s time for me to stop making excuses and creating chaos around me because of those excuses. I am wild in my love for Christ and I am free to share that love with the world.
Stop making excuses, mama.
Say your sorry to your sweet baby you snapped at and remind him that you love him, unconditionally. Tell him about His savior who is perfect and never loses patience. Tell him that you want to be like that savior and ask him to remind you of that. It’s hard, but it’s right.
Stop telling yourself those mama’s at church don’t wanna see your messy house or hear what you have to say about a Christian book you read. They struggle with everything you do and so many different things you haven’t yet. God put them there, next to you. Go find out what beautiful plans He has hidden in them.
Settle in, for five minutes every day, with a Christian devotional book or, better yet your Bible. And be with Jesus. You found 5 minutes to check Facebook while they watched a movie. Use your time wisely. He is more fulfilling. I know. First hand.
Are you an excuse monster? Do you create chaos around you? How does this reflect in your relationships with your spouse and children?
He has already made you new. Let Him work in you.
Heavenly Father, thank you so much for who you are. You are good and loving and perfect. Let us worry less about how incapable we are to find the energy or the time and remember that you are all we need. Stop our excuses in their tracks. Remind us that everything starts and ends with you. Help us to show others your unconditional love and peace that passes understanding in every moment of our day. Shine your light through us. We want so much to be who you made us to be. Amen.
Photo credit: Whispering Pines (Kayla Powell)