Sometimes, I let my kids eat Spaghettios for dinner.
This random thought occurred to me the other night as I was driving home. Faith asked if she could eat Spaghettios for dinner, and all too quickly, without thinking, I replied, “Yes!” My initial thought was, hey, those are easy and quick to fix. Which means less time spent cooking (although my sweet husband always cooks 🙂 ), and more time playing, reading Pony comics, or playing in the tub.
It also means that I feel that old familiar twinge of guilt (more than likely brought on by unrealistic social media expectations!) for not feeding my kids organic foods and such.
As I drove, contemplating Spaghettios of all things, my thoughts (& parenting guilt for all too often succumbing to survival mode!) moved onto other areas.
I decided I could be a better mom if I spent less time on housework & more time playing in the floor in the evenings.
I reasoned that Zoe might be further along in her motor skill progress if I could add just one more therapy appointment.
I could be a better wife IF….a better nurse practitioner IF…..
One simple thought for dinner then escalates into inadequacies that are not spiritually uplifting, in fact, I think they are more lies that Satan uses against Christians to render us ineffective for the kingdom.
I am learning that there is always a spiritual battle going on; as Christians, if Satan can’t steal our souls he sure does want to steal our joy. Our influence. Our witness. Our faith in what God is doing.
Boy does he work hard at it too.
I am also finding the more I am aware of this, the better able I am to fight against it.
Ephesians 6: 10-17
10Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.13Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.16In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.17Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
This past week was Graham’s fall break from school. The girls were on their regular schedule (although we TRIED to coordinate fall breaks!) and so Graham & I took a few days to get away by ourselves. We are trying to be very intentional about making sure we have family time AND couple time. It’s a fine balancing act but I think we’re getting pretty good at it 😉
We headed to Asheville to do a little hiking, reading, shopping (although ALL the stores in Asheville apparently close by 5 pm–what the heck??), and hiding out in the mountains. We stayed at a bed & breakfast outside the city, and one particular night we were strolling around when we saw this display downtown…
A “Before I die I want to…” huge chalkboard…
I was amazed at the things people wrote that were important to them. Things they wanted to accomplish before they die, so they’d have no regrets. Feel fulfilled.
Get rich. Go to the moon. Travel. Climb a glacier. A few more of the serious ones? Find inner peace. Have a baby. Get married. Make peace with my body. Reflect Christ.
That wall got me thinking. What would I put on my own “before I die” chalkboard? I don’t think I could narrow it down to one thing. I have a huge list.
So when I recognized the negativity creeping in from considering whether or not feeding my kiddos spaghettios for dinner made me a bad mom or not, I remembered this wall. And I remembered that I only have so many dinner nights with them. They won’t remember that mom made them eat veggies every night or that she let them eat cheesy processed noodles from a can sometimes.
Those memories are fleeting. I don’t want that to be on my list of things to do before I die.
I want this stuff….
Reading bedtime stories (while cooking dinner on the stove, sweet man 🙂 ).
Lazy days outside…
And squishy puppy faces…
Those are all things I want on my “before I die” list. The people (& puppies!) that matter.
I’ve decided inadequacy is a lie Satan uses. Maybe it’s not something everyone struggles with. But when I feel inadequate, whether as a mom, as a wife, as a professional, or as a woman in general, what I am learning is that everything else suffers too. And I don’t believe that’s the way God has called me to live….
4You, dear children, are from God and have overcome, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world…1 John 4:4
I may need to buy some more cans of spaghettios 😉