Tomorrow is my daughter’s birthday and I am baking brownies for her to bring into school. Unfortunately, the mix I chose serves only 16 brownies, so I had to go back to the store to buy a second box. I realized this, of course, at 9:00 p.m., just after I had put the kids to bed, finished washing dishes, preparing next day’s lunches and launching one batch into the oven. Have you ever had to gear up to do something when all you wanted to do was collapse into a horizontal position?
When I am tired and longing to end the day by dropping my head onto the nearest pillow, I have to remember to thank God for the gift of motherhood He has bestowed onto me…it’s now an integral part of who I am. Motherhood doesn’t completely define my identity but brings definition to how I spend my time and prioritize responsibilities. And I have responsibilities that I didn’t have before…because I am a mom.
There are moments when it’s natural to feel tired…tired of having one more thing to do and feeling as if you can’t possibly add one more task to the nearly-toppling-over pile on your plate. We add and add and by God’s grace, we are able to take away from the pile and reduce its size. But in that adding and removing, we must pray for wisdom and discernment and ask, “Do I really need to get this particular job done or can it wait? Does doing that task mean that I won’t be able to spend time with my child in a meaningful way or perhaps nurture my soul in a meaningful way?” Maybe the task at hand is truly time-sensitive, in which case, something else has to wait in an effort to prevent your day from becoming a jog-a-thon through the to-do list. God knows our abilities, what we can handle, what we can accomplish and gives us His strength to draw on in that process. We have endless responsibilities because we are moms, and we are moms because we have children.
The next time I am longing to put my head down when I am trapped in a kid-related task, I need to remember that the task is at hand because I am a mom. Then, like in the case of waiting for a dozen brownies to finish baking at 11:15 p.m., wait for the oven timer to go off with a yawn and a smile.
“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” (Isaiah 40:29)