Living with Purpose
I have realized the last few months that I don't have a lot of extra time for writing. I didn't know how crazy life would be with a 1 and 2 year old until it happened!:P But, writing has always been therapeutic for me, plus I am trying to be more purposeful. And that is actually the title of this post- living with PURPOSE. As a young mom, sometimes it's hard for me to figure out what that means. I was thinking back the other day and figured out that I've pretty much always had a job (mostly full-time or along with school) since I was sixteen. And most of those jobs I really enjoyed. I loved feeling like I was doing something with my time, and the social aspect of work was always my favorite. So for half of my life, I have worked hard doing something I loved. Now, as a mom of toddlers who works from home AND lives in the middle of nowhere, I can begin to think I have no purpose. In fact, I was kind of feeling like that just recently. When I worked a job outside of the home, I could usually see my work at the end of the day and it was a great sense of accomplishment that I got something done. Even when I didn't have kids, I could look around the house on my day off and see all I got done. At this stage of my life, many days all I get done is keeping my kids alive and cleaning the same areas over and over and over and...you get the picture:) At the end of the day, sometimes I find myself feeling like I accomplished nothing. And, I mean, I have always loved daylight savings time, but for the first time, this year it is not my friend. Ever since the time changed, all of a sudden I hear little voices earlier than usual- 6:00am??? Why must you be awake already?!? (They are supposed to sleep til 7-7:30) That was my nice quiet morning gone out the window! I'm sure if you're reading this that you've experienced some of those feelings before.
As I thought through these things, I began to realize something. Not only do I still have a purpose, I have a huge one! It's just easy to miss sometimes! No matter what our stage of life, our purpose is ultimately to glorify God and make His name known to others. I can do that from anywhere, even my own home. My kids are watching me every day. I influence them by what I do and say. They are very impressionable. It doesn't really matter how much I'm able to accomplish, but how I accomplish it. Do I waste time on myself or frivolous things when I could be pouring my life into others? I think we should take care of ourselves by getting sleep when possible, taking time to breathe, etc. But we don't need 24 hours a day for ourselves. We can choose to instead give that time to others. If you are single or don't have kids, you may be free to go visit people who need to be cheered up, help an older person clean their house or shovel snow, or watch kids for a young mom. If you have a full-time job or kids that you take care of daily, these things might not be practical, but there are still plenty of ways to help others. You can write a note of encouragement, ask someone how you can pray for them & actually do it, have someone over for coffee and to chat, or just send someone something little in the mail. I know recently I got a note and a small gift from someone totally unexpected and it made my day:) You never know how much a little goes a long way!
So, if you're a momma of littles and starting to feel like your life doesn't have much purpose now, take heart! Everything we do for our kids might not be noticed, but it's making a huge difference in their lives for the future. I am amazed at how often my daughter remembers something from weeks ago, and she's not even three yet. They do remember the things we do for them and we can show them God's love in special ways every day. Some practical things we can do: take extra time to look them in the eyes and talk to them, do something special for them even if they don't deserve it (because let's face it, none of us deserve anything special!), or just give them extra affection and love. This mirrors God's love to them in a special way, because "while we were still sinners, Christ died for us." So next time your kiddos drive you crazy because they won't listen or they mess up what you just cleaned, think of God's great love for you & instead of getting frustrated at them, give them a hug and help them to know how to do better next time. I'm only saying this because I need to hear it! Remember, we all have a great purpose in life that is way bigger than ourselves. In whatever we do, we should seek to show other's who Christ is by loving them. Whether it's doing dishes, vacuuming, folding laundry, or teaching a Sunday school class, all these things make a difference in the lives of those around us. So don't get discouraged! The little things you do make a big difference! Reach out to someone today.