What do you want to be when you grow up?

I remember always having to answer that age-old question. The implication was that if I found the right career, life’s “calling” would follow. It resounded deeply in my generation. A career, a job, an occupation should be—will be—your passion. I transitioned from a psychologist to an economist to an engineer, but they all lacked that “passion.” I pursued and excelled in each, waiting patiently for the promised feeling to blossom.

Then Bella, my eldest daughter, was born. No one warned me that maybe, just maybe, my passion would not be a college major, wouldn’t have a syllabus, and wouldn’t require a degree. No one warned me that changing the world might mean neglecting my home and trying to find balance would be a daily struggle because excelling in one comes at the expense of the other.

Clarification Needed

No one clarified that my career might be the bread on the table, but it wouldn’t be my life calling. No one told me to expect to find joy in the simple things and in the people I get to share them with; the gentle breeze, a home cooked meal, and cuddles under the sheets. It was never hinted at that not owning a luxury car and not traveling around the world would be OK.

“Dream Big,” they said, failing to acknowledge the mesmerizing beauty of the small things, the small people that would tug on my clothes and give butterfly kisses. No one warned me that on most days I could be depleted but blessed, or that I could live weeks without 5 minutes to myself and still love every minute of it.

A Different Choice

I never imagined a life like this because it was rarely modeled and poorly advertised. Yet, an age-old book held this passion in high esteem and revealed to me the beauty that my previous worldview hid. It gave me the strength to pursue it with all my might and the will to make changes to my lifestyle and my wants. Tomorrow marks the beginning of a new season, new challenges, and new opportunities. Not everyone shares my journey, but oh, so many do. Many women, like me, were sold a life-calling very far from divine. Biblical motherhood is not a distraction to changing the world; it is the very catalyst that will bring forth the peace our society craves. It is my passion and my calling.

 

Marby Iglesias is a pastor’s wife in South Florida. You will find her on most days trying to keep up with her energetic toddler and baby. Her favourite pastime is sitting down for a good theology book with a cup of coffee.

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Through the Years of Tears I Have Come, by Christine Hoover

It is a delight to introduce Christine Hoover who blogs over at Grace Covers Me. Christine has graciously allowed me to share her post about her son.

Christine: Ten years ago I was crying different tears over this boy. They were bitter, desperate, pleading tears that soaked and salted my entire life. Like a broken faucet, I couldn’t restrain their constant dripping. I cried throughout worship at church, unable to sing the words and mean them. I cried while driving the car with my son in the backseat and another in my womb. I cried in my bed, clinging to my husband, broken at the sight of his tears mirroring my own. Always, I cried after interacting with other people’s children whose affront to me was simply being typical, everyday kids who were hitting all their milestones.

If you’ve cried similar tears for your children you’ll want to click here and read the rest of Christine’s story where she shares how God helped and healed not only her son, but also her own heart.

Author Christine Hoover: The grace of Christ upended my legalistic life over a decade ago and ever since, I’ve been passionate about exploring and sharing about how that grace impacts every inch of life. In addition to my blog and books, I regularly contribute to Desiring God, Flourish (an online resource for ministry wives), and For The Church. My work has also appeared on The Gospel Coalition, New Churches, Christianity Today, and Outreach.

Perspective

Unbearable heat. Sparked anger. Flared tempers. Bickering over games, over toys, over every little thing that doesn’t go right. The longsuffering sigh of motherhood escapes as another insult is hurled between the children. I turn away.

How long, Lord? How long ‘till we feel some relief?

And it’s all normal, until it is not.

Eye’s wide. Tears formed. Arms failing. Horrifically quiet. Silently dying within arms reach.

I scream his name.

A deep finger scoop frees the airway and the most beautiful breath sounds fill the room. I pull him in. Skin against skin, cherishing the body heat that means he’s alive. “It’s okay now. I’ve got you. Thank you, Jesus. Thank you, Jesus.”

Cool tears bring relief and the embrace tightens, neither ready to let go. Neither ready to acknowledge how fast it all changes. Forced normalcy cannot stop the flood. What if I hadn’t turned back? What if the God who gives and takes away had called him home? What if—

—what if I simply give thanks? Thankful today is not that day. Not the day that requires that kind of strength. Thankful I can hold him a little bit longer.

And it dissipates.

Frustration. Anger. Heat. All ceasing to matter in the cool light of life.

Thank you, Jesus.

Always a student

My niece just moved in with our family. Here she is unpacking her life.

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She had dedicated the next year to her studies. She is spending the next year learning. Learning her craft. Preparing for the future.

When was the last time that I spent a huge block of time solely dedicated to learning? Learning what’s important? Preparing myself for eternity?

What am I learning?

Right here, right now God is teaching me about grace. I am learning about forgiveness. I am learning that things are not always black and white.

I’m learning I don’t need all the answers, I just need to trust God has them and that He’s got my back. That leads to my next lesson. I’m learning about trust.

I’m learning that motherhood is both the most important and hardest role I’ll ever have.  And that leads me back to grace.

Did I mention I am learning more about grace?

I’m learning I’m wrong far more than I like to admit. I’m learning that attitude counts for a lot. I’m learning more about the hugeness of my sin and the constant battle between my own sinful nature and the Holy Spirit.

I’m learning I have a lot to learn.

Just when I think I have a handle on it all, God peels back another layer and I see my smallness in contrast to His greatness with fresh eyes again.

I’m learning that I have barely scratched the surface of who God is and what His plan is for my life.

I’m learning even more about grace.

What are you learning?