I can’t believe I am saying this. With this admission, it seems like stadiums of people might stand up and boo me. It feels like there should be a grand coronation with a broken crown, for me, the mom who stinks the most. And here is why (and boy, do I hate to admit this): I hate playing with my kids.
There you have it.
Give me games, give me coloring, give me a purpose, but give me a room and a little one dreaming of pretend games – and I am lost.
I know, I hate me too; I see the other moms.
I am not like them: the ones who get on the floor for hours, aching back and all, the ones who are 110% in at the park and the ones who crafting all day long.
These women, they make me look bad; they point out the truth: I am not enough.
Are you hearing the voice of not enough too?
Not enough at work? Not enough with your family?
Not enough with your friends? Not enough of anything?
I could see “not enough” every time I looked into that innocent face. I could see it in his eyes – I was letting him down. Every look at him seemed to speak, Kelly:
You are a failure mom.
Your kids won’t love you.
You are not enough.
You will always stink.
If we aren’t careful, our failure will attempt to define our future.
This thought made me sit upright at the prospect of something deeper a nugget: If our thoughts are trying to kill relationship, rather than build relationship, they probably are not from God. This truth hit me like a lightbulb.
Then, I started to think:
Evil wants to make our perceived failure into our destined future.
It wants to hand us an eternal label that says, “Unstable and liable to fail.”
It wants to rip apart our families with the lie, that things can’t change.
It is at work to tell us, “You stink and can’t ever be better.”
This message always leads us to do one of three things:
1. Give up because we know how worthless we are.
2. Get mad at others because we feel angry that they are making us be this way.
3. Overdo it by being too involved, controlling or overbearing.
That evening, I decided to take a step back from my truth, the truth I didn’t like to play. I looked at it for what it is: I don’t like pretend, I do like the zoo. I don’t like pretend, I do like cooking. I don’t like pretend, but I do do fun things.
The fact that I don’t like pretend does not equal the fact that my son doesn’t love me. LIE!
It does not equal the fact that I am bad mom. LIE!
It does not equal a standing of doomed mother. LIE!
Relieving myself of the pressure, left me room to consider. It left room for me to love myself and him without getting burned. Stepping back leaves room for God to starve the bad and to feed in the good.
Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. Jo. 15:13
Jesus laid down his life for me. I have a little one that I can lay my life down for too.
I can sometimes do what I don’t like, I can play pretend, because I love him. I love him so much. I love with big and bold and wide open love. And, with Christ, we can do things we don’t like, even if we fail, even if we end up eventually yelling, “Get in the car. We are making an emergency trip to the library.” Even then, we are okay.
The love of Christ leave us, always, more than okay; it can’t go anywhere on the children of God. It always sees, always cares and always endures.
Shame has no place in the center of love.
Shame can’t exist in the presence of patience.
Shame can’t grow amidst self-forgiveness.
And, so we look at ourselves and say, “If Christ can love me like this, I guess I can love me too.” For, how can we really love, if we don’t have a base of love to work from?
‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:31
If I find his love in me, Christ’s love will work through me.