When I first felt the Lord moving me towards a simpler life, I began small. It started behind my closet door, where I pared my wardrobe down to only my very favorite things. It was the perfect beginning to this new chapter in my book because it affirmed in me the desire for long term and deeper growth beyond my closet.
These past twenty-eight days were not intended for instruction or even motivation, although those would be wonderful byproducts. These posts were my confessional.
Not a confession to you, and not even a confession to my Lord – He already knows the maze that’s my heart.
It’s been my way of confronting myself and all of my junk. Over my last twenty-eight years I have accumulated all along the way and it was time to step back, evaluate, and clear out.
Things are feeling lighter. There are less distractions. I can breathe deeper.
This process of writing and editing and praying and pondering is always a mirror. It helps me see more clearly, reflecting everything back in truthful light.
Thank you for helping me hold the mirror by simply reading and providing this safe space for me to declutter in pursuit of Him.
If you’ve missed my previous posts in this series, you can click here.
Wow. Posting every day for 31 days straight is no joke! It has been tough. It hasn’t been perfect, and I’ve missed a couple of days here and there because, life. So many of these posts I had to publish despite wanting to edit them more or sit with them longer. But what an awesome challenge it has been not only for my writing, but even more for my heart. I’ve had to wade through some heavy topics (and some not so heavy) in “real time.” Each day I have prayerfully considered what God would have me to share, to ponder, to declutter. Although this was a kind of crash course in simplifying, it has been transformative for me. I am so hopeful that the Lord will continue this sanctifying work in me, long after October 31 passes.
I plan to use these last few days to recap some of my greatest takeaways from this challenge.
With all of my “relationship” posts, I’ve noticed a clear thread in how I want to approach them. It really does come down to the themes of love, grace, and truth. When I remind myself to go “back to the basics,” those are the words that fill my mind. I am so grateful to the Lord for allowing me to see these precious pieces of my life with new eyes. Relationships need re-evaluating from time to time, and I’ve discovered how valuable it is to focus on improving myself, not the counterpart in the relationship. I will always have much to refine. Much too much to focus on how others need polishing.
I should just be the friend, partner, mother, and daughter that I want to have.
The Lord is sweet in his relentless patience with me as I learn to be more filled with him and less with myself. This is dying daily, and it’s not an easy practice. I want to see my friends and family with eyes of grace, a heart of love, and thoughts of truth. Always.
If you missed my relationship posts earlier in the series, you can read them by clicking here, here, or here.
There are about one million ways I could think of to improve my parenting. One million ways I fail and mess up, and one million times when I’ve said or done the wrong thing. I’m sure the people around me would gladly dispense advice and there are books full of checklists to make sure I’m doing everything just right, all the time.
It’s so much pressure.
But God doesn’t put pressure on me to be a more perfect mom. His approach is much different, gentler. He picks my tired self up off the hot seat, and then he doesn’t just leave the seat empty for me to find my way back again. He sits in my place.
He sees me in the monotony of my days, at my best and my worst, and he’s pleased. He tells me I’m a good mom (sometimes more than once, when I really need convincing).
That’s because the Lord looks past my mom “failures” and “wins” and peers deep into my mama heart.
He knows the soaring love I have for this baby of mine, because he sees with the eyes of a Father. A kind Father. A good Father.
When I feel all caught up in my constant striving to do better and more, I need to remember who he says I am. That is, already enough.
Right where I am – I’m enough. You’re enough.
I’m my best mama-self when I see myself how he sees me. When I parent out of that place, I’m not relying on techniques or methods, I’m just relying on the One who made me a mom in the first place. And He’s enough.
I am nearing the end of my Write 31 Days Challenge! If you want to read through some of the other posts in this series, click here.