Editor's note: This is simply my story. I believe God blesses us abundantly regardless of our situations, working or at-home, when we strive to put Him first. I hope my story will cause you to reflect on the blessings He has poured into your life through this one question, "What is my story?"
I often have sleepless nights when I am pregant and tonight is one of them. I imagine it has nothing to do with the fact that the Sheridan Evening MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) Registration Kick-off is this evening (September 14th). This is a brand new group to our town and a ton of heart-felt planning and preparation, for the year and this particular day, has gone into it.
I love MOPS because the organization seeks to glorify God in every way, and if we're doing our jobs right, first and foremost as servant leaders, then a lot of mother's lives are being blessed simply by coming. I know my participation in MOPS has blessed my life since my first-born.
Before having children, I had this mentality that I would be a career woman and simply was not suited to be a stay-at-home-mom. I imagined myself home bored all day, watching the clock, waiting for my husband to get home. I was frightened by a sense of resentment I could see myself building toward my husband because he got to be out there in the world while I was secluded from the world, stuck at home.
I continue to chuckle at how far off my ideas can be from what God has in store!
The moment I arrived home from the hospital with my first-born, Robby, I knew I would not be returning to work for a long time. My world instantly changed with our new little baby.
A friend had invited me to MOPS and I went when Robby was a month old. I was immediately surrounded by a group of women who were doing just what I was embarking on as a mom who would primarily stay at home. I listened to a stimulating speaker and had great, uplifting adult conversation that day. That was in March and the MOPS year ended in May so, I only went a few times. However, the following September, I signed up for the new year and within a month I was asked to be on the steering committee. I put some skills to work immediately and have been growing in leadership ever since.
MOPS is time for "me." It's an avenue which has empowered me to grow in every way, especially as a mom, and has provided balance in my life. It challenges and inspires me to constantly re-evaluate my priorities and to keep my priorities straight. I don't have to scream, "Me first, me first!" because I am blessed abundantly.
After five-and-a-half years at-home and our forth child on the way, I am still constantly trying to figure out what I can cut out to bring myself back home, fully present to my family and this amazing responsibility that I have. I have been gifted with far more friends and social outlets since I've been at-home. I've been growing in leadership opportunities that I never had prior to staying at-home. And I'm doing what I love on the side...writing, which only happens because I'm able to write about what I'm surrounded by and what is most meaningful to me everyday.
I used to say that I'm taking time off to be a stay-at-home-mom. What I am well aware of now is that my resume is packed full since staying home. I may not have a pay check but, I've been able to grow as an individual woman in more ways than I could have possibly imagined going into this amazing role of motherhood. Yes, I am constantly needing to re-evealuate where my priorities are in reality but I am so blessed when I get it right and those around me are, too, as a result. When I get my priorities straight, I'm taken care of.
This new evening MOPS group is something that God has spurred my heart to pursue since last September. I understood it would be a huge undertaking and I really had no idea if it would be a success. I've had my share of doubts but, I said "yes" to a leading I felt called to pursue, one I believe in and feel passionate about.
The evening MOPS group was created in order to enrich the lives of mothers who were unable to attend the day MOPS group due to work, schooling, or otherwise. We have two other amazing women on our team and one Mentor Mom who has been an amazing source of support to me. God is so good. He has asked us to do the work and he is providing the blessings!
We have our first meeting on September 28th with eighteen women already registered and more than a handful of women who plan to register at the first meeting. That is just within a month of getting the word out. We recognize that it will take the first year for most people to even know we exist. Despite my doubt, I never had to be concerned about the details unfolding or how many women would come because I've said from the get-go, "This is your deal, Lord. We're doing the work. You're providing the outcome."
God has already provided in the detailed areas of a supportive chartering church, a willing and passionate steering team, an extremely helpful and supportive day MOPS team, childcare, meals, door prizes, and the list goes on but, most importantly, he's providing the moms he intends to bless abundantly through this MOPS group!
God never ceases to amaze me.