The laundry has stayed in a pile for days now. My house is a mess. My doubt has been seeping through each and every crack in my home. I cannot seem to build enough motivation to accomplish even a phone call to schedule dentist appointments for my kids. You would think that my birthday, just a few days ago, would have jolted some energy into my body, but it seemed to zap it instead.
I know I need to get from this place of doubt to a place of confidence. I know I need to let go of the overwhelming tasks that are in my path each day. But how?
Moving forward (#movingforward) can be so hard. Finding a way out of the shadows and back into the light is difficult. No matter what your circumstances are – we all face that “pile of laundry” sometime in our life.
Jeremiah 29:12-13 Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.
Am I seeking out God? Am I asking for His help? Or am I allowing myself to dwell in my dirty laundry? I think you know where I am. I am looking only at the pile I have to get through. For some reason I cannot see the end result. I am allowing myself to see the obstacle, not the goal. Even worse, when I do see the goal, then I think about how that goal will be destroyed, and I will have to start all over again. You know what I mean?
How many of us have done the laundry and continually thought; why am I doing this – it is only going to build more laundry for me to do again? All you moms know exactly what I am talking about. It is neverending, or at least that is the side I am willing to see. What I am forgetting is when I clean the laundry, I am providing my family with clean, fresh clothes. Clothes that will keep them warm and dry. Clothes that protect them from the weather. Clothes that protect them from their environment. As a mom, that is hard to see. All I can see is this pile of laundry just waiting for me to dive in, so that it can pile up all over again. It is overwhelming.
When we have a pile of life laundry and we dwell on the fact that it will just keep piling up, we start to doubt. When we doubt, then moving forward with our day becomes quite a challenge. Let’s face it, moving forward wasn’t just about my pile of laundry, there was so much more to it.
I spent most of the evening talking to Pete about how exhausted I was driving our kids around town all day long. We have 3 kids in private schools. They are anywhere from 15-25 minutes from our house. Most families do not live near us. Because they are in private schools, in order to participate in sports, they do it through other organizations which means more driving. Let’s put it this way, I leave my house at 2:20p to start picking up kids and I don’t get home until 7pm – and that is on a good day. Monday, I did not see the inside of my home until 9:30pm, and I had left at 8am that morning. I was exhausted. I knew that the next day, I would begin it all over again. To top it off my Freshman daughter announced that she would like to go to a play to see her friend on Friday night (this would be after her practice that I drive her to after school), on Saturday afternoon she wanted to go to a soccer game (30 minutes away) and on Saturday night a friend of hers was having a bonfire. Really? More driving…
Can you see why I started to lose motivation? Can you see why moving forward was so hard for me? What do I do? So, I complained to Pete. Is this really my cross to bear?
After Pete offered many solutions which did not fill my doubts and concerns, I started to pray this morning – what is stopping me from moving forward? What is stopping me from seeing this “pile of laundry” differently?
– Neverending cycle
– Feeling overwhelmed with all my activities
– Feeling used and abused
– Deprivation of my time with God
– Knowing I want to do more with my time than just be in a car
– Discontent with just about everything
After writing down all those feelings, I asked God for help.
2 Corinthians 6:2-10 (The Message) Well, now is the right time to listen, the day to be helped. Don’t put it off; don’t frustrate God’s work by showing up late, throwing a question mark over everything we’re doing. Our work as God’s servants gets validated—or not—in the details. People are watching us as we stay at our post, alertly, unswervingly . . . in hard times, tough times, bad times; when we’re beaten up, jailed, and mobbed; working hard, working late, working without eating; with pure heart, clear head, steady hand; in gentleness, holiness, and honest love; when we’re telling the truth, and when God’s showing his power; when we’re doing our best setting things right; when we’re praised, and when we’re blamed; slandered, and honored; true to our word, though distrusted; ignored by the world, but recognized by God; terrifically alive, though rumored to be dead; beaten within an inch of our lives, but refusing to die; immersed in tears, yet always filled with deep joy; living on handouts, yet enriching many; having nothing, having it all.
Interesting how just reading that gives you the feeling of a tug-of-war game: good times vs bad times, being praised vs being blamed, being trusted vs being distrusted, ignored vs recognized, alive vs dead, sorrow vs joy. Life is a back and forth, a give and take. God wants us to recognize that and to ask for His help because ALL OF IT is for His Glory, ALL OF IT will be used for his good. He wants us to keep moving forward. He wants us to do His work even when it is hard.
I have not been listening to God. In order to move forward, I have to allow God to give me strength, to lead my day. I cannot rely on my own strength because it will never be enough. I have to praise Him and cry out to Him when I need help. I have to remind myself that this is for His Glory and not about my accomplishments. I have to praise God at the end of the day that I spent time with my family. I have to start each day anew; living each day moment by moment. Don’t look ahead, don’t worry about tomorrow, never look at the day as neverending, but regard it as hopeful. I must take my head out of the shadows and turn toward the light.
This is not easy. In fact, it makes me a little sick to my stomach just thinking about it. The driving around, the pile of laundry; they are not going to disappear. I have to move forward. I have to let God reveal His Glory through my doubt.
Living each day moment by moment, constantly setting a goal to move forward, will help me push through this doubt and develop confidence to take on my day. Confidence which so many of us lack, confidence which is within our reach, but we have to ask for it with our whole heart. Now, go take on this day.