Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Transition of Mommyhood & Ministry

For the last 3 years, my literal job has been to encourage and disciple people. My husband and I serve with Youth With A Mission (YWAM), where we help to train young missionaries. In working with YWAM's entry-level discipleship school, daily life has consisted of doing one-on-one discipleship, listening to a lot of Bible teaching, and taking teams of students on overseas mission trips. It's been an amazing season of life! I've gotten to be a part of seeing God do some amazing things. One perk of working in this type of environment is that it's fairly easy to find a place to serve. You see a need, plug-in, and try to make a difference. It became easy for me to recognize the specific skills and gifts that the Lord has given me. I felt like I knew who I was and what I had to offer other people.

One of my awesome small groups! (I took them to Malaysia and Thailand.)


Sweet little baby Carlos, in Guatemala


After having Nicholas, my daily life has changed significantly. I no longer work with the discipleship school and spend most of my time at home with Nicholas. My days generally consist of snuggling, singing silly songs, wiping butts (Nicholas's, if you were wondering), and other mom stuff. I have people over to our home, occasionally attend prayer meetings, and do a tiny bit of work with our admissions office, but I'm not as involved in ministry as I was before. This has been a big shift in my life. I've gone from knowing exactly how I could serve to being unsure of what I still have to offer.



If I'm honest, somedays I don't feel quite as "useful" to the kingdom of God now that I'm "just" a mom. I'm wrestling through how I can serve the Lord and serve others, while being a present mom and wife. I believe that I can glorify God through my role as a mother, but it's really important to me that I continue to serve outside of my home, in whatever capacity God allows.

Fortunately, I know that I'm not alone in this struggle. I've talked with many fellow moms, and most of us have wrestled with this in one way or another. It's so easy to have our identities wrapped up in what we do and what we can produce. I have to ask the Lord quite often to show me who I am and what roles I am supposed to fill right now. These roles are different and fewer than before, and I'm learning that that's ok! Producing a certain amount of work isn't my life goal; being obedient to what the Lord asks of me is.

Thanks for letting me share my heart with you today. I'm nowhere near having this all figured out, and I'll probably need to re-read this post often. Experienced mamas, I am open for your input! I'm still a newbie at this whole motherhood thing, and I know there is grace and room to grow. What I DO know is that God has given my son to me as a gift, and I want to embrace him and this season of life with a teachable heart. God loves to take our feeble attempts and turn them into amazing things so that He is glorified. So while I am weak, He is strong. I'm resting in that truth today!

6 comments:

  1. Let's not ever forget that our new role as a stay at home mom/homemaker is also our "ministry".

    I sometimes find myself grieving over the loss of my "professional" life ever since I became a full time stay at home mom. But like you, I acknowledge that being a mother is a gift and remembering this incredible blessing helps me to always see the face of God in my daily responsibilities at home.

    Although being a stay at home mom can be mundane, I feel closest to God when I am taking care of my son. Raising a child requires us to dig deep and be patient and be forgiving and be compassionate and kind.

    Jesus loves children so please know that you are glorifying God the most as you take wonderful care of Nicholas.

    You are doing a great job as a mother, I can tell by Nicholas's happy smile : )

    God will reward you for the selfless love that you give your child, His child.

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  2. I agree. What changed my heart after 7 years of full time YWAM ministry was realizing that my family is my ministry as well. The same things that apply to discipling your DTS students will apply to raising your kiddos! Same thing just different circumstances.

    When we had our first, God really showed me the importance of raising kids. The investment that we put into our children is an investment in every person that they minister to in the future as well. So even though sometimes it feels weird not to contribute to the everyday business that we used to, being a full time parent is one of the most amazing, rewarding, and important callings that God can give us! You are doing an amazing job!!!

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  3. Hopefully I am not double posting . . .

    I just wanted to encourage you that you are doing a great job! I transitioned into full time motherhood after 7 years of being a full time YWAMer. What helped me was God really showing me that family is ministry as well. The same things that apply to discipling your DTS students apply to raising your kiddos too.

    God has been really showing me just how important it is to make our kids a priority. Every single investment that we make in their lives is an investment in the lives of the people that they will minister to now, and in the future. So even though it may seem weird not to be involved in the business that we used to be, being a full time parent is one of the most wonderful, rewarding and important callings that God can give us!!!

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  4. Those pictures are so SWEET! I think being a mom and teaching your son about Christ and how to live a good life and being there for him is a ministry in and of itself! You're doing a wonderful thing and I can tell he's a happy baby :D

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  5. Thank you for your transparency! I just had my first and it's caused me to take a "Sabatical" if you will from the youth and worship ministries at our church. I'd been doing both for so long and I had no idea how strange it would be to take a break. I miss it, but God is filling those places with the fulfillment of raising our son. Thanks for the encouragement and I'm sure you'll find your balance :)

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  6. I can totally relate to this feeling and struggle with feeling like there's so much more I could be doing. Thanks for sharing and I did a mission trip thru YWAM, love it!

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