The very first thought that came to my mind while reading the topic of this blog is- “It isn’t a balance, its a partnership.”
I have been a mom for 11 months now and I have learned the most I have in my entire life within these eleven months of my daughter being alive. I have found when things get difficult, like sleep regressions or teething for example, I go into panic mode and run to google or “mom” groups on Facebook for a quick solution. These are excellent tools to have available to us, BUT, it usually replaces our ever-present God who is eager to bring us comfort and direction in the midst of our parenting struggles. God is our FATHER, and He knows what it’s like to be a parent! He should be the first thing we run to rather than our last resort.
I lead a motherhood group on Wednesday evenings and we talked about this topic for hours.
The conclusion was - God’s solutions are usually not quick fixes or the direct answer we are looking for, so it is easier to rely on a quick google search or to phone another mom friend. I am not discounting the importance of God speaking through other mothers in our life, but if we haven’t asked God first or included Him in the process, we are seeking our answers from the world instead of Him.
“But God, I want my baby to sleep through the night NOW!!” This was my response to God’s nudge when I was in the midst of my baby’s third sleep regression. I do not function well with lack of sleep. I become a… not nice person. So when my 7 month old daughter began trying to roll off the changing table while I was changing her poopy diaper - that was the first time I really yelled at her out of frustration. I felt so guilty. Or when she is screaming her head off while I’m trying to drive, I have screamed back at her to stop the crying - guilty again. It is a constant battle to not try to do this mom thing alone. Not wanting to “bother” God with my issues or mom-guilt.
The beautiful thing about God is that He wants us to cling to HIM in these situations, and every situation.
When our emotions get the best of us and we snap at our children or loved ones, His GRACE is enough for us. When we are so tired that we feel like throwing in the towel and running, He renews our strength. When we are washing bottles, trying to keep up with the laundry and up keeping up our home, He says “I am with you ALWAYS.” The question is, how are we inviting Him into these seemingly mundane moments? How are we getting into His presence and His word while trying to “balance” time with Him and being a parent?
As a stay at home mom, whenever I grab my Bible to have intentional time with Jesus, I am constantly interrupted. I have tried getting up before my baby does, and then her sleep schedule changes. I have tried after she goes to sleep, while she’s napping, while she is awake - but nothing stays consistent because she keeps developing and changing! I have had to give myself grace and stop trying to balance God and my parenting but instead, allow God to partner with me all throughout my day.
So, as I am typing this blog, I am asking God to speak through me to the mother struggling to find time to connect with God and feeling guilty for it.
As I get frustrated trying to figure out why my daughter is crying, I ask God to reveal the reason to me and to give me patience. When I feel lonely and disconnected from being home with an infant all day, I call upon Jesus as my friend and ever-present help. When I do fall short and snap out of frustration, I thank God for His endless grace for me. When I take my daughter for a walk, I am praising God for his beautiful creation and my family. Yes, I do play worship music in my home, pray out loud in front of my baby, and read her books about Jesus. I do my best to read my Bible and do my devotionals in front of her to be an example to her when I get the chance. But ultimately, from one mom to another, simply inviting God into all the little details, all the frustration, and all the joy of being a mother has been the greatest intentional thing I’ve ever done!
Welp, I hear my daughter screaming in her crib for me to come get her, so bye-bye for now!
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