I turned 30 this week and I am strangely excited about it. I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting and thought I’d list some of the things that stand out as lessons I’ve learned this decade. In no particular order here they go:
- One child, or person for that matter, means a lot to God, and if He has given you only one to care for, He has given you a precious and meaningful thing.
I spent a lot of my twenties caring for one child at a time. First I cared for one very special girl who had autism, then one sweet little boy I nannied for full time, and then my own beautiful daughter Adelle, who was my only child for nearly four years, and I was her stay-at-home mom. That was a lot of one-on-one time God gave me with three amazing children, and He saw fit to use the majority of my twenties in a way that seems so small, but I have no doubt in my mind of how significant and meaningful those times were.
- Being a mom, a wife, and a keeper of the home is enough.
This one really hits me hard, because last year I was not able to be Adelle’s primary caregiver, not because of choice, but because I was physically in too much pain. Being a mom isn’t easy, and being a mom when you have health problems sometimes feels impossible. Being a “home keeper” at times really has been impossible.
This year has been so much better, but I have really battled with anemia and ups and downs with pain issues, so at times I have definitely felt like I can’t “do my job.” But God has been good, He has helped us, and I have had a lot of good times this year. I am excited for our future as a family. I took my daughter Adelle for a bike ride the other day and I was so full of joy you might think I was loony. It felt like heaven to me, and I appreciate those times so much because of the times I have missed out on them. When we got back she asked me for a snack, and to my delight I still had enough energy to make one for her and one for my husband too. I was really excited to not be falling over half dead by the time I got home- I mean like, really excited.
Being a mom and wife in this family is something I can’t take for granted. I realize now what an incredible blessing it is, even though it can be so hard. God has given me more in this family than I could ever hope to find elsewhere, and I am so thankful. (Note, I am not saying women cannot do things outside of the home- I am currently taking a University course! But I don’t need to add to my role to find fulfillment or prove I am enough).
3. Job 2:10 “Shall we indeed receive good from God, and not accept adversity?”
I don’t know how many times I have battled this out. Enough times that I would hope I have really learned it, but it is usually a wrestling match. There is no peace when we don’t accept whatever comes from God’s hand. When we resist His will. When we say He is unfair, and when we actually believe we deserve something better, whether we say it out loud or not.
Whatever the circumstances, I have learned that God provides peace when I recognize that I do not ultimately get to have a claim to what I want or think is best for me. He knows. He is wiser than me.
- “If the Lord wills” is not a cliché. Those have become some of the most freeing and peace giving words in my life.
Going back to the last point, I have learned that I can accept adversity while hoping for and even pressing relentlessly towards relief from that adversity. If the Lord wills, I will overcome. If the Lord wills, He will bless my efforts. If the Lord wills, I can achieve my goals in spite of this adversity. And if He does not will, He will stop me in my tracks. He will thwart my efforts. He has the right to do that! He knows what is best. If I recognize that my life is in His almighty and loving hands to do with as He pleases, what is there left to fear?
- You don’t need it all by 30.
Speaking of thwarted plans- hah! Actually, I stand amazed at all the Lord has done in our lives. Two kids, a house, and my husband works from home full time running his business. I marvel how we ever made this work, and know it can only be because of God’s provision.
As far as my ambitions or even plain desires outside of this realm, God has often made me unable to run after them! He has kept my life small, and even the small things have often felt harder than I think they should, but small does not mean insignificant, and guess what? I’m only thirty y’all.