I have many great things going for me—all of them are God things, not Lauren things. Check it out:
1. Chad- I have an incredible husband that is laid back, easy to get along with, very funny, quite nice to look at, and an incredible partner in crime.
2. I have my Max- a wonderful little bald bundle of blue eyes and giggles. He’s so much fun and he’s also so much work!
3. Gabe, my stepson, who brings his own perks and challenges. He’s filled with life, and ideas, and excitement.
4. I have a great job and an awesome boss that offers a place for me to do the things I’m good at, in an environment that I love, while allowing me the flexibility needed to be a wife and a mom.
5. We have an incredible small group that meets weekly to press God issues and marriage issues into our hearts and lives, so that we are constantly learning daily to reflect and glorify Him.
6. I have a boatload of wonderful, amazing friends, and a great (BIG) family that is very entertaining, encouraging, and loving.
7. I have a great little house that offers us comfort and warmth and shelter, and requires daily upkeep.
8. We go to a very well rounded church that allows many many different avenues to get plugged in and volunteer, and I get to hang out with 3rd graders weekly.
9. I have several different free lance writing opportunities that allow me to use my gifts and my creativity to teach children the word of God and ideally, make people laugh.
10. And I have a sweet, sweet Jesus who craves my time and who is so worthy of my praise, adoration, thoughts, and attention.
And without rubbing my blessed-ness in your face, I’ve got to tell you that this is just a very brief list of what I have going for me right now.
I grew up going to North Point church and heard a sermon series when I was younger by Andy Stanley called “Choosing to Cheat”. I have since read the book, and loved both of them. The idea is that someone/ something is always being cheated. For instance, if work is getting the majority of your time, your family isn’t, and vice versa. And this is where the guilt and my guilt comes into play.
My list is incredible- just writing it all out makes me heart swell. But it also makes me sweat and my blood pressure rise a bit too. I constantly feel guilty. Whichever aspect of my life I’m concentrating on at any given moment is full of joy and stress simultaneously. This is because I’m cheating. When I’m at work, I feel guilty that I’m not with Max. When I’m with Max, I feel guilty that I’m not working. When I’m spending a few quiet minutes alone in my car, I’m also feeling guilty for not using that time to catch up with friends and family. When I go to bed early to rest of for the next day’s adventures, I feel bad that I’m not hanging out in the living room with Chad. When my list of things to do is getting checked off early in the morning, I feel guilt for not spending that time with my Jesus. I could keep going on and on with such scenarios, but I’ll spare you.
So what gives?
I don’t know the answer. If you do, please feel free to comment.
But I have found a couple aspects of Truth that I can hang my hat on.
God gives me strength according to Psalms 41:10.
God promises that His spirit is upon me, all the time, in Isaiah 61:1-4.
God promises to answer my prayers in John 16:24.
God assures me deliverance in 1 Corinthians 10:13.
God promises me forgiveness in 1 John 1:9.
God offers me guidance in Proverbs 3:5-6
And thankfully, God promises me rest in Matthew 11:28-30.
I think the guilt comes with being a perfectionist, with being a mom, with being a control freak, and with living in my flesh. But I am a new creation, and have been washed in the blood of Jesus and saved by grace. So it is my prayer, and my goal, to put off the guilt and live in peace, founded on The Savior of the Universe.