As the kids are back in school after a fun filled, exhausting, yet momentous holiday break, I feel like my New Year can finally begin. It always feels so box like and cliché when I come upon a new year of life and face the task of writing out some resolutions I would like to achieve in the months ahead of me.
I loved the message I heard at church a few weeks back about this very thing. The pastors’ suggestion on making goals for the New Year was to first discover who we want to be and then decide what we want to do. This really hit home in my heart and challenged me to think about the things that really matter in my life.
Each year my mind races with new possibilities, goals, and aspirations- however thoughts of stress, worry, and overwhelming pressure quickly rush to the finish line and eventually choke them out! I would say I am a bit of a perfectionist. Please don’t mistake this for perfection! I fall short of my own expectations every day. But by the grace of God- literally- we are all His works in progress. His masterpiece that He continues to paint and refine if we allow Him to, until our final breath is given and we are made perfect in Heaven before Him some day!
I would have to say that my life mirrors this internal struggle for perfection. I feel as though I can only catch my breath when everything is finally in its proper place. If you walk into our home, for the most part, things are picked up and put away. In the downstairs at least! I can’t stand dishes left in the sink, or shoes and cups lying around. I joke with my husband about having some OCD in me. When things appear out of place I have this deep need to put them back or straighten them up. A little nuts I know!! But on those very rare days when the whole house is clean all at once, I feel like I have arrived! A little piece of Heaven on Earth!!
Having this Type A personality while being a mom of four, drove me very close to insanity – no seriously! When I could relate almost daily to Jessie Spano’s nervous breakdown! (I still have those moments every now and then) I realized that I needed to let some things on the “to do” list go. It has been this strive for perfection in my life where I struggle most. Not only in our home, but in my spiritual life as well. Always feeling under the gun or one step behind. You know, “ There is just never enough time!”…..to all of us ‘Saved By the Bell’ kids! 🙂
It is so natural each year for us to strive for perfection. We desire to Be perfect. From our skin, to our bodies, and on to things more material like our clothes, house, cars, or even our kids. But how perfect do these things leave us on the inside? And the bigger question I have asked myself is what difference do any of these things make in the legacy I want to leave when I am gone? Will my kids say that my body was flawless or my kitchen cabinets were perfectly organized if I died tomorrow? Or will they say that I was a selfess mom who loved them and the Lord- with all her heart, soul, and mind.
Our Heavenly Father cares about our hearts. The innermost point of our spirit where He resides, or for some- where He still longs to call home. Jesus is the only one who sees through all of the flaws and clutter, and despite it all He loves us anyways! He loves the messes, imperfections, the scars, and even the wounds that may still be oozing. It is in these imperfect places that He knows we depend on Him most.
So my number one resolution for this New Year is to strive to be His light to all those around me. To love the Lord first, and my husband and kids second. I can only love them best when it is in this order, and I know that despite my shortcomings I will be most complete and perfect as I grow closer to Jesus. I pray to be intentional with my husband and my kids, and strive to enjoy all of life’s imperfect moments- in hopes that when that final day comes some day, there will never be a doubt in my family’s minds as to whether or not I cared more about who I was, than what I had done.
With love- April
Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.