Living Genuine Love Pt. 1
It was the first time I had ventured to a friend’s house as a new mama. My husband and I had been invited to dinner and my son was now 2 months old. It had been a few minutes after we ventured through their door – you know, fumbling about with car sear, diaper bag, blanket, and of course the baby in hand, when he started mildly crying. I still managed to sit down at the dinner table and swallow a few forkfuls before the cries got louder and I had to excuse myself to quiet him.
I sang him lullabies, tried nursing him, changed his diaper, spoke softly to him and patted his back. Still the wailing got louder and I couldn’t contain the tears that started streaming down my face. All of my insecurities came pouring over me as I heard the voices in my head “you’re such a failure as a mom, you don’t even know what's wrong with your baby”, “what are they thinking of me in the other room, probably that I can’t quiet my own child!”
Here I was, yet again, realizing that I look to others for validation in my insecurity - once as a single woman, now as a married woman with a child. This is a very lonely way to live, and quite truly, exhausting. One day secure in my ability to be a good mama, and one day feeling incapable to live up to my calling. Perhaps you can relate?
In comparison, we cannot experience genuine love. Whether we are single, married, mothers or called to religious life, we must always clothe ourselves in humility and find our completeness in Christ. Constantly looking for Jesus in those around us and finding grace in our weaknesses. Because let’s be real, sometimes babies cry and us moms don’t know why. When we look to Christ for validation, it doesn't matter when things start to crumble, because our identity is rooted in HIm who created us.
So it’s a new day. I walked into my women's group with dark circles under my eyes, hair in a ponytail and smelling like milk. As I walked toward the women waiting for me, I wondered how would I answer the question, “how have you been?” Would I say, “oh, we’ve been doing fabulous! Isn’t my baby’s outfit so cute?” But I knew what was in my heart that day. My baby didn’t sleep last night. He just didn’t feel well. My answer will determine whether I want to appear put together or be vulnerable. Human. Will I be one with the Body of Christ?
So I mustered up the strength to be honest and say, “you know, I’m just plain tired, but I’m doing the best I can as his mama,” and humbly asked them for advice. I also added, “how can I pray for you,” to each woman there. Because He calls us to live in unity and genuine love, supporting each other, walking with each other, without the masks, hand in hand.
Sister, how can I pray for you today? Let me know in the comments below.
Oh, and if you know a new mama, tell her she's rockin' at her new job, you just might put a smile on her face.