As a mama with littles, the main focus at this point in life is them. They're tiny ones still, with much dependence on yours truly to be their lunch-preparer, diaper-changer, boo-boo kisser, nap-enforcer, and primary playmate. The entirety of the day is filled with thoughts of them and attentions to their needs because that is the season of life we are in. Also, I want to be a mama who is present and so I strive to give them eye-contact and verbal interaction with regularity because I feel like those things are important for them both intellectually and emotionally (plus, let's be honest, this extrovert would go crazy if I didn't chat with them because PEOPLE--even little ones--are my favorite!)
The thing is, as much as I love being a mom and as much as I do feel with full intensity that if we are mamas it is part of the calling God has put on our life and we'd best be striving to do our very best to love those kids well because we have THE CREATOR OF THE UNIVERSE to answer to and He is serious about making sure children are LOVED WELL and VALUED... (deep breath)...as much as all that is true, I don't think being a mom is my highest calling. And I have to tell you, I kind of wrestle with that. Because this mama bear would do anything for her cubs and there is nobody in this world I feel more responsible for than them. It is mighty hard to loosen that grip a little sometimes. Anybody else?
But the truth, when we get right down to the nitty-gritty, is that our allegiance first and foremost belongs to God. We can surely take the reigns on our own life and he's likely not going to shoot us down with a lightning bolt, but he doesn't really have to. We are fully capable of messing up the entirety of our lives--our marriages, our relationships with our children, and all the other most-important things all by ourselves, aren't we? And when we do, grace is waiting. This is true in parenting, surely, but it is true in the wholeness of our lives. Raising up our cubs is a part of the bigger calling of being a follower of Jesus.
"What does all of this this mean for my little life?" I've been wondering. I don't fully know, but I think in part it means that when I'm mothering my kids and being intentional with them I am fulfilling what God has called me to. I don't think it means I need to change what I'm doing, as much as where I'm looking. Perhaps, more than anything, my "take away" (because apparently we're at youth group right now) is that I need to keep my eyes and heart wide open in all areas of my life. For the next several years my kids will be a primary focus for me. God has given them to me as a gift and I cherish them. I want to nurture them and enjoy them and teach them how to be good and strong and brave. I want to cheer them on and boost them up. But I don't want them to grow-up thinking they are all I have eyes for. I want them to see me have eyes for Jesus. I want them to see me look outside of myself and outside of themselves and on to the many ways God has called and created us each to breath him out.
When all is said and done, I think perhaps what I am learning is that I want to be God-focused no matter what my life looks like in its current state. In the kid-centric world I am in right now, through the rebellious and rocky teenage years, and into the empty nest I will one day likely find too quiet, HE is my rock. I hope that this is the legacy I pass on to my children. Through loving them and through loving Jesus.