Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Do small things with great love

"In this life we cannot do great things. We can only do small things with great love." - Mother Teresa

Well. I think if I had to choose a "quote of the week," that would be it. I was so emotional yesterday and just kept feeling so disappointed that Wes and I weren't doing something more important as a family. You know, like besides loving each other and loving our girls, and going to church on Sundays, and making enough money to "get by." I mean, I want so much more in life than to just "get by." I want to live! I want to live for God! Knowing what we know and believing what we believe, I would think our lives would be... I don't know, a little more radical or something. A little more purpose-minded. Or mission-minded, or whatever you want to call it. I'm not sure the best way to describe what I was feeling, but I think you probably get the general idea. I wanted my life to mean something, to someone besides just my family and close friends. I wanted to reach out and serve people, and honor the God who gave me life and salvation and EVERYTHING GOOD THAT I HAVE. Just sometimes seems like I should be doing more. Like we should be doing more as a couple.

Well, I don't know if maybe hormones had something to do with it... I was pretty emotional in general yesterday. You should have seen how upset I was that I had to pick up Wesley's clothes, lol. (My husband has never been particularly determined to pick up after himself, but usually I don't complain - I mean, he works 40 hours a week to provide for us, and I'm grateful enough for it that I don't usually mind tossing a shirt or some socks into the laundry basket for him, or picking up dinner dishes. Usually.) Anyway, I was sitting there feeling sorry for myself for having to pick up after my husband, and ignoring all the wonderful blessings he brings me in favor of dwelling on the one thing that I don't like. Good way to become very bitter and ungrateful, by the way. And then I felt so guilty for being upset about it and not being more thankful. I was so disappointed in myself that I started to cry. I'm such a mess sometimes.

Uh... lost my train of thought. Where was I going with this? Oh yes. So I was already clearly very emotional yesterday, and when I'm emotional I usually dwell on things that bother me, and become less and less content until something happens. (Example, I get to attempt to talk it out with someone, preferably Wesley but sometimes a close girlfriend instead. Other example, I emotionally explode, pretty much.) So there I was, an emotional wreck, thinking about how I'm pretty much wasting my life, at least in some areas, and dwelling on all the things that I don't do that I could be doing that would honor the Lord... Big things mostly. Missions trips and stuff. Giving our spare time and occasional spare money in ministry to others instead of using it on ourselves to make our lives more comfortable or whatever. And... well, yeah, it was pretty depressing.

Wow, I'm getting kind of long-winded here. Okay. So where I was going with this - today I remembered this quote and started thinking that maybe it's not so much about doing what I would consider to be "big things." Maybe it's more about honoring God in the little things first. I mean, I've learned this lesson a few times in my life already, but I seem to keep forgetting. Thankfully, God is patient and continues to remind me and put me back on track. But I thought this time I would share it here on this blog, in case it might help some of you out there who are going through the same sort of thing.

So, here are some ways I thought I might put this idea into practice. I can raise my children with great love. I can be more patient with them, be there for them when they need me, etc. I can think of clever and unexpected ways to bless my husband. I can spend more of my energy in loving him and less of it in complaining or dwelling on what he does or doesn't do that bothers me. I can be more positive - more thankful. I can prepare meals ahead of time and be more orderly about all of that, and do it with an attitude of love rather than an attitude of "if I don't fix the oatmeal and beans today and get them soaking we won't have breakfast and dinner prepared for tomorrow and we'll have to come up with some last-minute solution, but I really don't feel like preparing the oatmeal and beans right now because I feel like I've been in the kitchen all freaking day!" Lol.

Yeah. So that took a while but I think I got my point across okay. So I guess I'll leave it at that for now and go tend to Rachel, who just woke up from her nap. Later!

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