Working Mommy

Long before I became a wife or a mother, I knew God was calling me to be a doctor...specifically, a missionary doctor. I was only 16 years old, and had no idea what I was committing to, but there you have it. For many years, although I wanted a family of my own, I thought maybe God was calling me to be single. Guys weren't beating down my door, and studying kept me pretty busy, so I figured this was one way of keeping me focused on my calling. And then when I was 24 I met Eric, and it soon became clear to me that God was calling me to be a missionary, a doctor, and a wife. But perhaps we wouldn't be blessed with children? Not so. At the age of 30, I added mother to the above list (and x2 at the age of 32!). And I need to remind myself that I am who I am because that is who God called me to be...He might have chosen not to bless me with a husband or children, and He might have called me to a different career, but He didn't. I need to remember because of the days when it seems impossible to do all four of these things.

It has seemed very impossible lately. The transition from one to two kids was surprisingly difficult, despite Ben being a great baby. Just when I was getting in the swing of things it was time to go back to work. My mom was here for the first 4 wks, but she sadly left the first weekend of July and now here I am. I have struggled a lot with feeling inadequate to the task at hand. I feel like I am failing at work, at being a mom, at keeping a home, at being a wife. I can only give so much of me to each role and there is always more that can be given. When I'm at work, I want to be at home with my kids. When I'm home, I think about all the good I could be doing at work. I feel guilty. I feel like I should spend more quality time with my kids on the days I AM at home. And at night I fall in to bed, exhausted, hoping that just one night I can get a solid eight hours of sleep.

But in these valleys of life, God is whispering to me in His still small voice. Eric and I are working through a discipleship course called Sonship and it has been the perfect thing at the perfect time in my faith. At the end of lesson 2, our mentor said to me, "Satan is the accuser. He is believable because he tells the truth...half of it, at least. He says to you, 'you're not the wife you ought to be. You're not the mother you ought to be. You're not the Christian you ought to me.' And he's right, you're not. But Jesus IS all the things you ought to be, and you are joined with Him because of His sacrifice." Wow. That was a word into my heart. Yes, I fail. All the time. But Christ doesn't, and I am joined with him.

God has also brought to mind a talk I heard years ago, before I was a mother, at the Global Health conference in KY every year. A doc/mom/missionary named Suzie Snyder was giving a lecture on being a mom, and a wife, and a doctor, and a missionary. She was nice enough to send me her notes recently so I could remember some things. Some of the most important points to me were:

What God has helped you to attain, he will help you to maintain.
You can't give all of yourself to all of your roles all of the time
Life comes in seasons

In the end, I have only 2 more months of being a working mom...for now. It's harder than I dreamed it would be. But God has called me to it. God is faithful. He will help. And He has blessed me with a great husband and a fantastic community of people who help with my kids (as well as two sweet Kenyan ladies).


Sandy said...

Rachel, that was a very touching post. Thank you for sharing. You are in in my prayers.

Anonymous said...

I am there, too! Though I can't begin to imagine it with 2 kids. What encouraging words. Thank you, and I am praying for you in the last 2 months. He IS faithful!

Anonymous said...



susan said...

God is good! He will indeed supply all your needs, including the needs for time, for peace, for rest, and for joy in the journey. hang in there Rachel.

Uttz Family said...

It is interesting to know what we are called to and carrying it out and then pushing through the valleys as you said. I will continue to pray for you in this season. My heart understands yours in many ways. Love ya sis!

Barb said...

Very well put, Rachel. Looking forward to long talks with you on just these sorts of things, when you return. No matter what the roles, the wrestings are the same - can I trust Jesus with my inadequacies? Am I doing any one any good? As long as these questions keep pushing into the arms of our Savior they are for a good purpose.

You minister to more than you know! May your conscience be a peace in Him. Much love, dear sister- Barb

Haller4307 said...

Rachel, thank you so much for sharing this. I can very much relate and from what I have heard from other moms with these things on their plate, the feeling of never being able to do anything as well as you like is common. I constantly remind myself that the specific demands are young children are a phase and that God only asks me to give him each day and I don't have to worry about the next.

May he continue to speak into your heart about his sufficient grace for all he has called you to do.

Carla said...

Oh, Rachel, you are one of my very favorite people! I know that you can do all that God has asked you to do! I love you, love you, love you! Can't wait to see you when you get back to the States. Hope you get here before I heaad back to Burma. xoxox Carla

Carla said...

Big hugs to the family! xoxox Carla