God says to ordinary [moms] like me and you that instead of closing our eyes and bowing our heads, sometimes God wants us to keep our eyes open for people in need, to do something about it, and bow our whole lives in front of him. –Bob Goff
I’m the real mom. At least according to my friends and fans on Facebook. Whatever is happening, I share. Whether it’s deep confessions how I can’t stand my son’s ADHD behaviors as we struggle to find a therapy routine that works or the fact I feel small, frumpy, and insignificant standing behind the camera at work, or the fact I blow it with my kids on a daily basis.
Most times I struggle because I think, I’m just a mom. A mom with a blog.
This past weekend I met with my Bible Study Group I’m leading. As we chatted about the study, real life moments intertwined with realizations; and the resounding issue echoed with each woman—feeling insignificant. They felt defeated and insignificant in their roles as mom, wife, sister, aunt, or co-worker. After all, they were just Shelley, or just Pauline. Just moms. What could they do to change the world? Their lives didn’t match their dreams–to do something big, be someone, make a difference.
My mind drifted back to my recent trip to the Philippines. A world STILL utterly turned upside down by Typhoon Haiyan which churned 20 feet tall ocean waves all the way to the mountains. Cities turned to rubble, mud, and ruin.
Here I was, just a mom who liked to write, I had no idea why I was on this trip. I didn’t know how to build a house or run a medical clinic.
How could I help?
I encountered women who lost their babies, their husbands, their homes—who had nothing but the tattered shirt on their backs.I hung out with moms in their tin shanties, shooting the breeze about favorite recipes and past times. The whole time, I thought, I have nothing to offer them. What could a mom like me do for them?
Later that evening, I wrote a post about being in Tacloban and shared photos of my encounters. And that’s when God nudged my heart—this is your mission field; to write, to encourage, to expose, and to lift up. Before leaving, I passed out copies of my book and asked how I could pray for each woman and to my surprise, my actions touched their hearts. My simple act of being me confirmed God was still at work in their lives.
When we feel small and defeated, we wonder how can God use our broken, tattered pieces of our tired selves.
We look around our home, think of our dreams and then wonder why it doesn’t match up. We think we’ve failed.
But when we encounter our calling, we’re stretched with the friction and challenges as God calls us to a deeper authentic life.
Sometimes our safe and comfortable, routine suburbia lives blind us from living the deeper life our souls are craving.
But you don’t need to go to the Philippines for God to use you, but you can open your eyes. God wants YOU and I to look up, to observe our surroundings with fresh eyes.
You would then realize you aren’t just a mom; you’re God’s child standing at the edge of your calling.
Little mama, God placed you in this moment at this time to share his love. He created you with talents, gifts, and a burden. Whatever that burden may be, being a mom of three, caring for foster kids, shut ins, neglected kids, having coffee with lonely moms, pregnant teens, church repairs; combined with your talent—it becomes your mission field where you can share Christ.
What you do each and everyday matters.
So what kind of a mom are you? Just a mom with a blog? Just a mom with a burden for troubled teens? Just a mom with a heart to love others? Just a mom who loves coffee and encouraging others?
You are standing in at the threshold of your calling. All God is asking you to do is surrender your talents and say, “Yes.”
Then you’ll see you aren’t just a mom, just a teacher, just a co-worker. You aren’t insignificant, you are Jesus with skin on.
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One thought on “Fresh Eyes”
Thank you for visiting Tacloban and shared your time and talent with the Filipinos.