Saturday, April 24, 2010

My Identity in Christ vs. My Identity as a Homemaker

It's interesting in life how we interact and relate to each other based on our current role, marital status, job, or place in society. It's a natural way to meet people, form friends, and figure out if you relate well with other people. In my current role as a homemaker, I seek to form friendships with other people my age who are in the same stage of life - a stay at home mom with 1 or more kids and a house to take care of. As normal as it is to identify myself in these terms, and others, it can also be easy to find my identity in these terms. And I find myself doing it often.

Right now, and not forever, I am a stay at home mom. I spend my time making meals, nursing a baby, cleaning my house, walking to parks, doing laundry, going to AWANA, going to my parenting study, entertaining...the list goes on. And though I spend my time doing these things, it is not who I am. I forget this. I get caught up in the things that I do, and try to find my worth and value in them.

One really good tidbit I have heard from my small group leader is "this is just a season." And though being a stay at home mom is a LONG season, it is still just a season. Someday, my kids will grow up, move out, and have their own lives, and I will no longer be doing these same things. But for some reason, since this is what I do, I try to find satisfaction, worth, and control in this role as wife, mother, homemaker. I feel happy and joyful when my house is clean, the dishes are done, my kids aren't crying, I'm dressed, showered, and on my way out with a fully packed diaper bag. But if my kids are fussing, I look a mess, my house is a disaster, and the dishes are piling up, I tend to feel like my worth as a homemaker is lost. I feel I have failed, and the things I'm suppose to be doing, I'm not doing well enough. In other words, my role is temporary. I can't find my entire worth and fulfillment in a temporary role that is just part of my life and who I am.

I find myself playing the comparing game. Comparing to other moms, other bloggers, other single people, other people with more discipline, other skinnier, prettier moms, etc. Its' not a good path to be on.

But lately, I think God has been trying to show me that my identity must be in Him. Though my role defines what I do from day to day, it doesn't define who I am. Who I am is a child of Christ. A sinner saved by grace who daily needs the Lord (and needs to start seeking His face daily) to get through my tasks as homemaker. A servant who must seek to glorify the Lord in every small area of my day. A daughter of Christ who should not only be seeking Him intentionally in my day, but also throughout my day through prayer, singing, the way I speak to my kids, the things I think about, thinking of how I could better serve others, and seeking joy in the menial things that seem to make no difference.

So things that I want to fight against:

1. Lack of joy in being a homemaker (Psalm 92:1-2, 1 Thess 5:16)

2. Comparing myself to others (1 Samuel 16:7, Deut 5:21)

3. Seeking fulfillment in my role (Philippians 1:9-11, 1 Thess 5:23, Ephesians 3:14-19)

4. Not daily seeking God and remembering that my purpose in life is to glorify Him, not find fulfillent in anything else (Colossians 3:2, 17, Philippians 3:20, 1 Thess 5:17, Ephesians 5:19-20)

This is a big lesson to me. If I would spend my day seeking out opportunities to serve the Lord instead of trying to find fulfillment in a clean house, happy kids, and a life that looks like it is perfect, I would have better, more fulfilling days because God would always be the One who was filling me up to overflowing with Himself. I can't get that kind of joy from clean floors and momentary happiness from my children.

Moms: Be challenged. We might be called (and it is a big calling!!) to this life for a season, but it does not define who we are!! I am first and foremost a child of God, and I should live in a way that is constantly trying to bring Him glory.

"I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in you inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge-that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God." Ephesians 3:16-19

1 comment:

  1. Your kids look happy and healthy and your husband looks content. You're doing a great job.