As you probably know, I’m pregnant. (Woohoo! Praise God! Very exciting indeed!) Right now I feel very pregnant… I’m bigger, way bigger, than I’ve ever been in my whole life. But it’s a joy and delight to be in this season I’ve always longed to experience.
The crazy thing is that I have been fighting this season or living in denial for some time now. What I mean is that I tend to want to do more and think that I have more energy than I really do. I have the same expectations of myself during this season even though my sleep isn’t as sound, my body is changing tremendously as it participates in the beauty and mystery of the creation of a little human, and my husband and I have plunged headlong into the steep learning curve of preparing to enter parenthood.
All my life, ever since my earliest memories, I’ve yearned to be a wife and mother. When I became a wife, I felt like I had received one of the greatest gifts in the love and joy of being one in life with my husband. I didn’t know I could choose to love another human being so much. And NOW my heart is already exploding with love for this precious one forming inside me and I haven’t even met him or her yet! Anyway, what I am getting to is the fact that this is such a beautiful, unique season and yet there are a gazillion things pulling at my heart, time, energy, attention and all I want to do is focus on what’s most important.
None of us have to be victims to all that contend for space in our lives. Today, I caved. I broke down in tears over the phone with my parents because I was overwhelmed. I didn’t realize that I was letting all the distractions win. I was giving space to all the little things that don’t really matter that much!
What season are you in? Are you embracing that season or are you fighting it? Are you celebrating the beauty that God’s knitting together in this unique time in your life?
Maybe you feel like your life is only ho-hum right now with nothing super exciting going on right now. You are in the valley that makes up the majority of life. What you do with the mundane consists of the bulk and substance of what it means to worship God in the ordinary. How are you living worshipfully today?
Maybe you are dating someone special and you’re on a journey of discovering if this will develop into engagement and marriage. You are cultivating a vulnerable plant that needs nurturing, time, and attention. Even if you don’t move forward with this person, there are important things to learn through this time of discovery. Don’t let those lessons pass you by!
Are you engaged and getting ready to enter into a marital covenant with the man you love? Engagement is one of the most intense times when details and potential distractions fly at your face from all directions. Make sure you remember what this time is mostly about: preparing for marriage, not just the wedding day. Enjoy the giddy delight of celebrating the commitment you are about to make! Marriage is a ridiculously delicious and amazing gift from God… especially when we treat it the way He wants us to.
Whatever your season, identify where you are and lean into it, embrace it, roll up your sleeves and do the work required to excel through it. Take your deep breath as you sit back to enjoy the ride. Life is a series of seasons. If we run the race of life the best we can in each season, we will get to the end with greater satisfaction. Being that I just truly woke up to the fact that I am in such a beautiful season that requires a new focus, I outlined some steps that led me to this revelation. Maybe it’ll help you recognize and embrace your own season.
Remember the BIG picture
Our lives are a fleeting vapor. We are like the flowers of the fields that are here one day and pretty soon are gone (Psalm 103). Who do we think we are? God is the only sovereign, almighty One! He’s the One that holds everything together (Colossians 1). We are invited into His big plan of knowing Him, making Him known, and advancing His Kingdom. We have the joy and privilege of being His kids. Let’s not freak ourselves out over all the small things. Instead, we get to do our best and bring those things to the Lord!
Humble your heart
So many times, it’s pride that tires us out! We run and run and run thinking that in our own strength we can accomplish all that we think we need to do. Granted, we all need to be diligent and disciplined, however, we need to live life with the sober understanding that apart from Jesus we can do nothing (John 15:1-8). Again, who do we think we are? My mom would often remind me: “Cristina, you aren’t the messiah, Jesus is. You are a servant.” What a difference! Let’s humble ourselves and remember that we are only ordinary by ourselves. It is Christ in us the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27)… He’s the one (not us) that makes us extraordinary!
Let God’s grace cover you
We mess up. We stumble. We learn through scraped knees and embarrassing moments. God’s grace is big enough to cover each of us. Thankfully, we can laugh at some of those memories now that we are on the other side. Sometimes, though, we still wince when we think of the foolishness we’ve committed. God’s in the business of making all things new (2 Corinthians 5:17). Let Him pick you up from your shame. Let Him dust you off, and affectionately slap your little rear end signaling you to get back in the game. He calls you more than a conqueror in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:37).
Sometimes we need a breather. Sometimes we’re straight up tired. We need a time out. Take it! There’s nothing wrong with sitting the bench for a chance to refuel, regroup, and get ready to jump back in at the right time.
Listen and Prioritize
One of the best ways I improved as a soccer player was when I asked my coach during breaks “What could I be doing better?” Thankfully, my coach was good at affirming me, but I truly wanted to know what I could improve. We need to do this with our Heavenly Coach. God sees the whole game. He sees things we don’t see and knows our strengths and weaknesses. Listen to Him. Especially in those time outs, those Sabbaths, take advantage of the opportunity to listen well to the One who knows best. Let His priorities be your priorities. If you get back in the game with your own agenda, you are hindering your team, but if you humbly cooperate with the Coach’s agenda, everyone on your team wins!
Now get out there and give it your best. Be in the season you are in.