When I was a new mom, I was pretty stupid.
I didn’t have a clue what it meant to be a good mom, or a good wife. Even worse, I didn’t spend a whole lot of time trying to figure it out. I did what I assumed everyone else was doing, or what I assumed was expected of me. I didn’t know there were different theories of child development, or that not all parenting experts taught the same thing.
I didn’t realize that most of my ideas, about motherhood and about everything else, were the product of all the messages I’d absorbed over a lifetime spent in a particular time and a particular place.
I didn’t question whether those ideas were right, or where they came from. I was a new mom and a new wife, and I was unhappy about being a new mom and a new wife. I figured that if I kept all of us alive, that might be the best I could do.
- I worked full time because that’s what I thought you were supposed to do.
- I let my baby cry himself to sleep at bedtime because that’s what I thought you were supposed to do.
- I breastfed, and then stopped breastfeeding, because I thought that’s what you were supposed to do.
I regret almost all of the decisions I made when I was a twenty-something. Very little thought went into most of them. Most of all, I regret not bothering to step back and ask myself this one question: What is the purpose of my life?
That’s why I’m blogging. I think I finally have the answer to this question, and contrary to popular belief, I don’t think it’s an answer that is different for each of us. It’s an answer that I want other moms to seek, and find, and share with other moms. I want to be a counter-cultural messenger, sending out truth in a culture of lies.
At various points in my life, I might have said…
- The purpose of my life is to fulfill my career goals
- The purpose of my life is to earn as much money as possible so I can buy as much stuff as possible
- The purpose of my life is to be successful in the eyes of my community
- The purpose of my life is to raise perfect children
But those are all wrong. The true purpose of our lives is not about money, or a career, or even being a great mom or wife. Those are all good things, but they are not THE thing. Our true calling is to know, love, and serve God. Not ourselves. Not our employers. Not our families.
When you try to put anything at the center of your life other than God, you will fall short of the peace and happiness – in other words, the true success – that Jesus died to give you. I know how this sounds when you aren’t a Christian. I’ve been there. But I urge you to give this blog a chance.
I wanted to write a blog where my identity as a Christian was secondary; where I could help other moms find meaning and happiness in their lives without making it all about God. But, the more I’ve thought about it, the more sure I am that it IS all about God, and I can’t tell it any other way.