2/10/10

on expectations

A few days ago I decided to give my hair the day off. No drying, straightening, product. Just a good clean wash and let it go. Something about it was strangely gratifying, like saying, "I recognize your part in this and I free you of expectation for today." (It didn't really look all that different...which makes me want to smile and cry simultaneously.)

In some ways, isn't that what we all want? Maybe it's just being a mom, but my idea of ultimate relaxation is not being away from my kids or lounging by the pool or even sweet silence. What would be totally restful would be a day with no expectations. I don't need to look, talk, feel a certain way. The kids can just be kids. The house can do its thing. I'm not advocating for chaos- that is the opposite of restful, for sure. I'm just saying that I think sometimes the most stressful thing about being a mom (woman, Christian?) is living in the expectations that have crept up within us.

And then I think of Christ, and I think about the abundant life that He came to give us, and I think maybe I might be missing the train. If my life is characterized more by failure than faith...if my heart is more aware of pressure than freedom...if I live constantly feeling like I am somehow just not enough- can't help but think this isn't what Christ had in mind when He came.

(And something in me says, "Oh, great. Add 'abundant life' to the list of things that I'm not very good at." Sheesh.)

But I feel a stirring to live differently. To compare my heart only to Christ and humbly accept the grace that such a comparison will require. To seek to shepherd my children with wisdom and innovation from the Spirit. To see the world around me with compassion and not envy. To fill my mind with truth- not trends. To see my fellow women not as competitors in this contest to be "Mom-Christian-Wife-Extraordinaire" but as co-laborers and fellow disciples in this great challenge called kingdom living.

I don't want to be suffocated by my own ideas of what is expected. I want to breathe deeply of Life, and exhale with a smile on my lips.

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