Let's be reasonable with one another, shall we?

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Biting off more than you can CHEW

I want to thank everybody for the input on how OPEN to be in the world of Blog. I have decided not to include my address and phone number on my personal profile. I have also decided that I will talk about my thoughts and feelings and just let it all hang out. My life will be logged...warts and all! If that makes me vulnerable, oh well.

In this photo provided by the Everglades National Park, the carcass of a six-foot American alligator is shown protruding from the mid-section of a 13-foot Burmese python Monday, Sept. 26, 2005 in Everglades National Park, Fla., after the snake apparently swallowed the alligator.

Have you ever volunteered to do so many things that you find yourself begrudgingly attending to them? This picture makes me think of a time when that happened to me.

It was the year when my youngest was a SIX MONTH old suckling. I had him … and a TWO year old … and a FOUR year old. . . I prayed .

We have a program at our church called MOPS (mothers of preschoolers) which is a special meeting time (with volunteers who babysit the children) for the mothers to have breakfast, do a craft and listen to a speaker. I loved going to the meetings (although it WAS a feat for me to get my three kids ready to be somewhere by 9 a.m.). Anyways, since I enjoyed the meetings … and the steering/administration of the group was by volunteers who fit the description of the title (M.O.P.S.) … I thought, “maybe that is something I should volunteer for.”

They approached me . . . I volunteered . . . This involved (two per month) extra, organizational meetings among the steering team, (besides just the monthly meetings where all the moms come together).

I also was a member of the choir and decided to participate in the Christmas Musicale, because I really love singing and it was a way to serve the Lord! Musicale involves going to weekly practices (beginning in August), and listening to tapes of the music to memorize it. As the Musicale draws closer, the practices increase to twice, and then three times a week. One also needs to obtain or make an outfit that fits with the program.

Being the conscientious mother that I was/am, I had the FOUR year old in preschool … which necessitated my loading up all the kids an extra eight times a week just to transport him to and from his classes … (where he learned how to cut paper up into strips!)

I also was on the Sunday morning nursery schedule once a month. I helped in Wednesday night AWANA.

I remember crying in frustration several times because I had bitten off more than I could chew. The moment it hit home that this was not right, was during a “moms day out.” This is when the steering teem of MOPS (mother volunteers) camps out in the nursery and watches all the other moms’ children while they go for two hours and enjoy some time out together…like shopping or eating at a restaurant. I remember standing there thinking, “I want to go, too … why do I have to stay here with ALL these kids … I get enough of KIDS!”

I was always on the go or … always being pulled on and tugged by my kids, and yes, my husband . . . I prayed . . . Then I repented.

My husband and I were studying about tithing and we were thinking about this passage in 2 Corinthians:


Every man according as he purposes in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loves a cheerful giver. (2 Corinthians 9:6-8)

God loves a cheerful giver . . . I applied this to my “service”. I immediately saw that even though my initial intentions were good, I was expecting way too much of myself as a mother of such young children. After finishing what I had started, (because I don't believe in quitting things halfway), I became more careful with what I said YES to. Now the kids are a little older, but I still only say YES to things when I can complete them with joy in my heart. Unlike the python in the picture, I stay in one piece … and I have God’s peace about that.

Sorry if the picture has been overexposed, but it inspires me!

It also makes me think of how I feel when I try to comprehend how divine soveriegnty and human freedom can be reconciled!

11 Comments:

  • Hi Rose,

    I've learned a similar lesson, though not as intensely. Especially when a church is small, the people who are willing to get involved end up wearing a lot of hats. Meanwhile, others really do not pitch in at all. But if every part would fit together and do it's share (Eph 4:16), we'd find the real balance.

    Unfortunately, when so many do not pitch in, and someone who has been realizes that they have over extended themselves, and they pull back, that makes it still harder on the ones who are still working, who must now continue without them. Ouch. And think of how the pastors feel, who are expected to participate in virtually everything.

    I wonder how many projects churches have going, that really have no practical use and only serve to occupy time - time each person present would gladly use elsewhere?

    In some churches I've heard of, the person who come up with a ministry idea must be the one to run it, and that sounds fair to me.

    By Blogger loren, at 10/18/2005 1:28 PM  

  • Thanks, Loren. I think all your points are right on!

    By Blogger Rose~, at 10/18/2005 9:33 PM  

  • I hope nobody misunderstands, I'm not trying to say we shouldn't serve the Lord! I'm just saying that we need to be wholehearted about what we do.

    By Blogger Rose~, at 10/19/2005 12:35 PM  

  • I'm so impressed by your willingness to be vulnerable, I hope it will lead to good things for you.

    By Blogger Nettie, at 10/19/2005 8:12 PM  

  • Of course I couldn't pass this one up.

    You said, "It also makes me think of how I feel when I try to comprehend how divine soveriegnty and human freedom can be reconciled!"

    But you don't have to reconcile best friends!

    By Blogger Jeremy Weaver, at 10/19/2005 9:34 PM  

  • Jeremy,
    That is kind of interesting coming from you . . . you just said it because it sounded good. I'm glad you came on over, though. We like hillbilly inbreeders here at RR.

    By Blogger Rose~, at 10/19/2005 10:26 PM  

  • Rose,
    good post. Great thoughts. Very insightful. Tremendously practical.



    Now about that honey-do list...

    By Blogger J. Wendell, at 10/20/2005 6:32 AM  

  • Nettie, I hope it will not lead to bad things! Thanks for your kind words!

    John,
    Thank you for the generous evaluation. Who's honey-do list?

    By Blogger Rose~, at 10/20/2005 8:39 AM  

  • And we need not take on that about which we cannot be whole-hearted.

    Good thoughts!

    Poor gator.

    By Blogger Joe, at 10/20/2005 12:33 PM  

  • Hi Rose,
    I do understand how it feels to be so busy with young children. I have 3 boys (7yr old with ADHD, almost 3year old with Autism, and 1.5 year old, no issues with him.) I have my hands full. Most of the time i feel like such a bad mother, because i am soooo tired and the house isnt clean and i can't be supermom! I have been through situations where i have bitten off more than i could chew. I always think if i can't do it all then i am a failure. It's pretty discouraging but luckily my sisters in christ always bring me back into reality. I love the Lord and i am so glad he blessed me with Godly women in my life! It's nice to know i am not the only one! You have a great blog!

    By Blogger Dorothy, at 10/20/2005 12:58 PM  

  • Joe,
    and what you said, yes. Thanks for coming over!

    Dorothy,
    You have similarly full hands. Thanks for reading and for adding your comment. You are welcome here anytime! We need more blothers.

    By Blogger Rose~, at 10/20/2005 11:10 PM  

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