At our meeting last month, Megan shared the following devotion with our MOPS mamas. She addressed the struggle that is so very common to moms of young children and we wanted to post her wise words here.
38 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39 She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. 40 But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself?
Tell her to help me!”
41 “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things,
42 but few things are needed—or indeed only one.
Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”
Have you ever felt like one of those circus performers that spins plates on sticks? One false move and everything comes crashing down around you. This is me. There is so much required of us as mothers that the job can be daunting at times. We serve our families, many of us serve our church, our community, our children’s schools, and in MOPS.
Over the past few weeks, I have been planning for MOPS, serving on youth staff, planning birthday parties, and various other jobs and responsibilities. Many days, I feel like I am in a constant state of motion shuttling kids, shopping, planning, and trying to be everywhere that I need to be. It is stressful and overwhelming. I am Martha. She was there with Jesus, she was serving others, she was doing good things, things that she felt needed to be done. But she was angry, stressed and overwhelmed. She was distracted from the one thing that was most important at that moment: the presence of Jesus.
We can’t disengage from being mothers and wives. There will always be dinner to prepare, children to tend, bills to pay…but we must find balance. I don’t want my children remembering me as the mom who did lots of stuff, but was always hurried and anxious. God doesn’t desire this for us either.
What do we do?
1. Choose joy - My husband recently called me out on this. He said that I spend so much time trying to be supermom and make everything perfect, that I miss out on the joy in the process. I really hate it when he’s right. I am a perfectionist. I put ridiculously high standards on myself and cause a lot of anxiety in the process. Stress and anxiety will rob you of your joy. As mothers, we can become so focused on the job, that we miss out on the moments. Life is going to happen. I don’t want to waste that time angry or stressed. I want to choose joy. Psalm 118:24 says...This is the day that the Lord has made, I WILL rejoice and be glad in it. It doesn’t say the day will make us happy, but that we must make the decision to rejoice in it.
2. Get in his presence - Martha was there with Jesus, but she wasn’t in his presence. Jesus said, only one thing is needed. We need his presence. We need His word. This is a really hard priority to make when you are a mother of small children. You don’t have to read the whole Bible in a year. Just carve out a few moments a day to meditate on Him. It will breathe life into your soul and give you strength to face the day.
3. Rest - Part of our theme this year is to embrace rest. I am a musician, so I often think in musical terms. The literal definition of a rest is a beat of silence, a pause. Sometimes we have to cut out all of the noise and the unnecessary distractions. Put the phone down, turn off Netflix, and rest. (Still speaking to myself here, by the way) I feel like God is telling me to STOP! Be still! Sometimes this means saying no to things that are causing me added stress and worry. Getting rid of distractions allows us to focus on the things that matter most…our relationship with God, our spouses, and our children. Jesus said, only one thing is needed.