“You’ll be a great mother someday” is a phrase I’ve heard countless times throughout my life. A love and passion for families, children, and the art of homemaking has been evident since I was a young girl. Just last night one of my good friends made a somewhat offhanded comment regarding my love of housework. “That’s why you’ll probably make a great housewife someday,” he said with a laugh. Someday.
I heard a similar sentiment while at work today. One of the men I work with announced he and his wife are expecting their first child in June. This started our entire operating room on the topic, and we began talking about children. After hearing stories of others children, want for more children, and the struggles of parenting, I shared a story from the other day. A group of friends and I went out to Applebees. After eating, we sat around chatting late into the evening. I was holding my friend’s 8 month old daughter and she fell asleep in my arms. There are few things I love more than holding a sweetly sleeping baby. The warmth of their tiny little body radiating into mine, the sweet smell that only babies have wafting off their precious little head, their silly bouts of twitches and unconscious sucking at an imagined bottle or pacifier, all these things simply make my heart melt. I did not share these sappy details (I was, after all, in a group of mostly men who would not appreciate such sentiment) but simply stated the preciousness of holding my friend’s little one. This comment brought an unbelievably sweet and wholly unexpected comment from the surgeon. “Melissa,” he said, “you are going to make an excellent mother someday.” Again, I am haunted by that one little word: someday.
This nasty little word often plagues my thoughts. It makes me feel I am somehow not really living today. Life with truly start when that someday event occurs. My life is not full or complete today, only someday. When each of these men made their comment, I know for a fact they had not even a hint of the tumult it would start in my soul. Regardless, I keep hearing their comments play over and over in my mind. These word on repeat cause my heart to cry out, “God! Why did you create me this way yet provide no way for me to utilize this passion?”
It is here that I stop. I hear the quiet voice of the Holy Spirit speaking tenderly to my soul.
God knows my heart. He knows it better than I do myself. He is the one who gave me this love and gifting. He planted this deep within the core of my being. He is the one who knows the exact reason why.
“For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” Eph 2:10
From this vantage point, I may not know God’s reasons. To be honest, I may never know, but I can rest in the knowledge that my Abba Father has a purpose –a GOOD purpose- for my life. In this I must rest.
These comments took my mind down another rabbit trail of things I ponder about God and life. As I mature in my faith, I am continually challenged to broaden my concept of what it means to be blessed by God. God’s gifts come in many varieties. I must learn not to control God by limiting and qualifying His blessing. I should never think the only way I can fully become the woman He created me to be is by becoming wife and mother. I cannot let my heart believe God is withholding blessing by withholding a husband. I purpose not to believe my life is lacking any good thing. These thoughts strip God of His sovereignty and wisdom and set my hopes and dreams up as an idol in my heart.
“Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!” Matthew 7:9-11
A very dear, sweet sister in Christ once encouraged me by saying, “God may or may not have marriage and children in your future, but I’m certain He has countless spiritual children in your path for you to love.” This was, by far, one of the most freeing things anyone has ever said to me. I have tears threatening to fall even as I recall that life changing conversation. Ever since that evening, over a year ago, my single minded determination to find a husband has found its place on the back burner, and my desire to bloom where I’ve been planted has taken its rightful place in the forefront of my ambition. The Lord is teaching me to trust in His unfailing love. He is teaching me to love others, to truly love them! He is providing for my daily needs, even silly ones like a jean jacket at the thrift store! He is my loving Savior and He knows just what He is doing. He knows my wants. He knows my needs. He will bless me beyond what I could ever expect or hope for, and the best part is that I’m positive those blessing will come in unexpected packages.
I can and will use this love to bless people. I will continue to shower my motherly love on my middle school girls. Maybe one day I will work full-time in an orphanage (something I’ve always wanted to do). No matter what, I will diligently seek out the good works God has equipped me to do.
To bring this full circle, I say to my dear friend and sweet colleague, “I don’t have to wait for someday. With Christ, today is all I have, and with today I will bless Him. I will be a spiritual mother. I will help my own mom be a homemaker. I will share my love with whomever the Lord places in my path. I will choose Christ.”