Welcome back to Timeout Tuesday. This post is specifically for the mothers in my audience. May you be blessed!
Have you lost your identity in motherhood?
So many people are desperate to find purpose and meaning in life. They search in vain outside of themselves, missing the fundamental guide which is discovering and celebrating their personal identity.
Compound this predicament with the extraordinarily sacrificial role of motherhood and finding the meaning of one’s life can prove a truly daunting task.
Can you relate to this? Are you asking questions like, Is this all that I’m supposed to be doing with my life? What am I capable of? Can I still do that? What do I love? What am I passionate about? What is my destiny? Who am I?
In this age of social media, we’re bombarded with images that convey, “The grass is greener over here. I’ve got this mom thing figured out. Looking great and living the good life is really no big deal”. It’s no wonder we long for Jaclyn’s hair and Rebecca’s wardrobe and Samantha’s new car and Jasmine’s extraordinary travels and Elsie’s passionate marriage.
When we discover who we are and how we’ve been intricately designed and purposefully equipped by the hand of heaven to fulfill a distinct calling, we’ll cease gazing longingly at the lives of others.
Really, what social media shows us are the highlights of other people’s lives. We’re privileged with a momentary glimpse and rarely exposed to the monotony of everyday life.
Time spent gazing longingly into another person’s life, is time spent outside Destiny’s design for you. You’ve been perfectly fashioned and perfectly equipped to fulfill your purpose, not someone else’s. So, when you assess your life in light of another’s, you’re actually comparing tulips to tigers or eggs to iguanas. A tiger isn’t expected to expose the same glory as a flower. Likewise, you’re not expected, nor do you have the capacity, to expose the glory of some other mom or woman. In trying to do so, you simply compromise the unique glory that is you.
The first step in achieving or regaining a sense of identity is to stop longing for what other women seem to have. Stop wanting to be someone other than your priceless self. The reward and fulfillment of your life is wrapped up in the most authentic expression of yourself.
In case you’re asking, “What is the most authentic expression of myself,” I can tell you that it’s not the job you used to have or the professional title you once held. It’s not the hobbies you used to have time for or the way you used to dress and do your hair. You, yourself, preceded all those things.
You were strategically placed into this moment of history in your gender, with your ethnic makeup and particular gifting to fulfill Destiny’s grand purpose. You were not arbitrarily chosen. You were perfectly chosen. No one else can fulfill what’s been written on your life. No one else can carry it full term. No one else can manage and execute it quite like you. This glory is reserved specially for you.
Everything about you was necessarily designed with the utmost care and precision for the fulfillment of your purpose. This doesn’t mean that you’re impervious to mistakes and shortcomings. It simply means that your mistakes and shortcomings can’t derail your destiny.
Now, back to the question of Have you lost your identity in motherhood?
The answer is a resounding NO! But, you have entered into a new season of your life – a season that could last for decades.
That statement isn’t meant to overwhelm you, it’s meant to expand your vision and perspective. Your destiny and purpose were not put on hold at the onset of motherhood. They simply received greater means through which to manifest the glory that is you. Allow me to elaborate…
The power of Eternity is forever hovering amid the chaotic monotony that is motherhood. Your challenge is to remain open to extraordinary power-encounters even amid the mundane. Destiny seeks to collide with your inherent potential in the most unsuspecting moments of life. Practically speaking, what does this look like?
I’m so glad you asked..a collision with Destiny looks like a big hot mess, like your carefully laid plans have come to ruin and your eagerly anticipated future lies in jeopardy. Destiny is not for the faint of heart.
So many of us are gripped by a sense of inadequacy because we compare the appearance of our life to an idea of what our life should be in light of what we’ve seen projected by others through social media and other large scale outlets. But, the truth is, these constructs (however attractive) are too small to be the extravagantly lavish work of Destiny.
Herein lies another rub of social media – it encourages small dreams and attainable goals. You witness the seemingly attractive life of another mom, compare yourself to her portrayal, and then wish for the life she portrays.
By no means do I mean to discourage your planning and dreaming. Quite the contrary. Have a process in mind. Entertain your vision. Just don’t allow the unavoidable constraints of your human conjurings to degrade the absurdly extravagant plan of Destiny for your life. You, in your humanity, haven’t the capacity to conceive of the lavish abundance set aside for you and the unfolding of your grand story.
Whatever notion you have for your future is, to some large extent, a construct of expectations formed according to what you’ve witnessed in observing the lives of others and, for this reason, it is too small. Honestly, how many people do you know that you can confidently say are living out their destiny? Not many, right? This is true of the people you see online too. Very few people are willing to abandon themselves to the mystery of Destiny’s course and, consequently, live a life much smaller than the one for which they were intended.
Know this, one divine moment orchestrated by Destiny can radically transform the entire fabric of your life and override a lifetime of careful planning. You mustn’t worry. You mustn’t fear that your opportunity has expired. Destiny isn’t done with you. In fact, even now, at this very moment, Eternity is working to unfold extraordinary promise and purpose in your life, which includes igniting your next generation towards the glory that is their future and their promise.
Your everyday moments are preparing you for extraordinary exploits. Your character is being developed in this moment. Integrity is being cultivated in this moment. Your authentic self is being nurtured in this moment. Everything that is truly you is being called to life in this moment. Destiny is examining this moment and gauging your preparedness for your next divine interruption. So, abandon yourself to the work of Destiny in this moment and every other unassuming moment in wait.
This is the second step in achieving or regaining a sense of identity. Brace yourself for the hot mess moments ahead. Prepare yourself today for those divine interruptions set to surface in your life. Cultivate a readiness and a willingness to yield to the mystery that is Destiny disturbing your plans and your goals. And, find comfort in this…your authentic self, the unadulterated you who exists without fear, regret, shame, or guilt dwells safely encased in the glory and promise of all that Destiny has for you.
You are not on this journey alone. Trust yourself and the ones you love to the plan of Heaven and you will find that even the wonders of social media cannot capture and convey the glory that is you and your life.
Before today comes to a close, list five qualities that you appreciate about yourself. Working from the top of the list to the bottom, take one listed quality each night and meditate on it. Speak it aloud three times and then sit in silence. Release your mind’s eye to the hand of Heaven, allowing Destiny to paint the beauty of that quality as it relates to you. Allow yourself to receive a vision or a word, some impression of the beauty that is intrinsically you – your true identity.