I am a stay-at-home mom with a global heart. I would love to magically heal all the brokenness I see on planet earth and make everyone’s dreams come true like in a Disney movie, but I haven’t figured out how to do that yet, especially while caring for my own four kids.
Running the hamster wheel of daily mundane tasks and being emotionally present for my kids, while they go through the ups and downs of growing up is hard work – joyful and privileged work that I’m grateful for to be sure but demanding all the same.
Deep down though, I’ve always had a strong sense that motherhood was a big part of my calling and have stayed true to that vocation for 12 years now, entrusting God with my desires to serve the world outside of my home and doing what I can for others within the structure of my busy mom life.
Increasingly over the years through prayer, writing and volunteer work, I have been able to expand my reach and express the deep love and faith I share with my family into the wider world. I want to provide encouragement and inspiration for as many people as possible through the joys and sorrows we all go through on our spiritual journeys through life. In my heart of hearts, I believe we’re all on this universal journey of the human spirit together.
While I marvel at how my words are starting to reach thousands of people around the world even in remote areas I can only hope to visit someday, it has been a long road to get to this point, and I always long to share more empathy, more hope, more joy and more faith than I can find energy for, while also taking care of myself and my family. I honestly never feel like I have enough time to do all that I desire to.
My prayer is:
God, use me to do Your work. Express Your love, Your voice, Your power, Your truth, Your mercy, Your justice, Your etc. etc. etc. into the world through me and my family. Multiply my efforts for Your glory in spite of my shortcomings.
I’ve been on the spiritual journey long enough to know it’s not about me and what I can do – it’s about me getting out of the way to allow God do His work through me in whatever way His Divine Mind knows is best. Most of the time in my case, it’s by pouring into my own family, being patient with myself and others, and staying connected to the Divine possibilities through prayer.
I recently realized what the gift from a stay-at-home mom’s heart to the world really is, and I am excited to share this because I think it’s relevant to all of us, especially in the information age, where we can be bombarded with images of each other’s finest moments, while we ourselves are struggling in the day to day grind or even going through enormous life challenges.
Let me tell you (with a wink and a grin) that the gift of a stay-at-home mom’s heart to the world is not a guarantee of perfect children being raised perfectly, though I happen to have four great kiddos, and I’m proud of the opportunities and love I pour into them. I am also clear about the fact that they are their own people, who have their own struggles, gifts and choices to make in life, and I am not the only force influencing them by any means. I’m also well aware of my shortcomings as a mom and clear on how fortunate I am to be able to pour the grace into them that I have been given, so I really can just thank God for all the good in our lives and keep praying for help.
The gift of a stay-at-home-mom also has nothing to do with any extra volunteer work, part-time job (or writing in my case) that we may or may not have the grace to do after long exhausting days with the kids.
The gift for the world from the heart of a stay-at-home mom is wisdom that can be gained in other vocations as well but is deeply ingrained in those of us who invest years in the trenches of repetitive, mundane tasks taking deep breath after breath of patience, while caring for children. It’s a deep realization and a simple message, which *if we’re lucky* was instilled into us from birth because we all need to know it at the core of our beings. In case you need the reminder today, here it is from the depths of my heart to yours in whatever circumstances you find yourself in today:
Your worth is not based on how much money you make or how successful you are in the eyes of the world. Your worth is not based on how good looking you are, how fit you are or how well you are dressed. Your worth is not based on the type of car you drive or how immaculately you keep that car clean. Your worth is not based on the size of your house or how anyone else judges your choices, capabilities or work, especially by the superficial standards listed above.
Your worth is not based on your level of health or happiness or how talented you are either. Your worth definitely is not based on how many clicks and likes you get on social media or even how popular you are in real life.
Your worth isn’t even determined by the love in your heart, your willingness to serve others or your choice to persevere in serving others when it’s hard, even though those are really great things that I hope you aspire to like I do. Your worth isn’t determined by your willingness to work hard, admit when you’re wrong, learn from your mistakes or evolve into a better human being over time, although those are wonderful habits I encourage you to cultivate.
As a stay-at-home mom, who has devoted years to loving little kids through all their messes, mistakes, meltdowns, health problems, struggles, joys, successes and sincere moments of pure innocence, I can assure you from the depths of my heart that Your worth is inherent in who you are because of who created you and the love He created you out of – that’s it.
The love God has for us is like the love we have for our own children on steroids times five million plus infinity.
Your worth is unshakable because you were handcrafted by the same infinitely brilliant Creator, who invented meteor showers, ocean sunsets, cool mountain breezes and every other glorious thing you’ve ever experienced. In spite of your imperfections, God sees the good at your core. You are valuable, worthy, cherished and lovable exactly as you are in this moment, wherever you are on your spiritual pathway through life.
No one knows these life lessons better than a mom, who works 24/7 for free, driving a messy minivan, while sporting stretch marks, wrinkles and the same yoga pants she wore yesterday, especially when she hasn’t had her coffee yet and is breaking up the 18th sibling squabble of the day. Like so many occupations in life, being an at-home parent has a way of stripping away our egoic attachments and pride, taking us to the edges of our energy, patience and capabilities, where we can realize our own fallibility and learn to rely on God.
The more we love our imperfect kids, the more deeply we can begin to fathom the love our Heavenly Father has for us in spite of our own flawed humanity. The more we strive to understand our kids, the more we can understand and care for the flawed and wounded people around us. The more we embrace God’s unconditional love for ourselves through the messy process of parenting, the more we can share His Divine Love with the wider world.
Personally, I will forever be grateful for the joys and struggles of these years in the trenches pouring everything I have into my family, running out and praying for more. I can’t imagine a better way to cultivate the deep faith and love I am starting to share with the world through writing too.
Where are you at in realizing your own self worth? What message do you have for the world after all your hard work? Comment below, and I’ll be delighted to keep you in my prayers.
Lord help us to find our worth in You and Your unconditional love for us, rather than our own accomplishments and worldly success. Help us to surrender our egoic attachments and allow You to flow freely through our hearts into our families, communities, and world. In Jesus name, we pray. Amen.
Written by Nicky Gant 7/26/2019 for http://www.uniteinprayer.org