There are some people that just get you. It is as if you are cut from the same cloth. That’s how I feel about Elesha Maynard. When she submitted this post to me, I melted because it was as if she took a page from the book of my life. I read this post and I thought, “she gets me.” I’m so excited for you to hear from Elesha. To read more from Elesha, including her adoption story you can visit her blog here.
good at life. Okay, really, I fail. Some are small, daily failures. They are the questionable choices like dressing one of my toddlers in a white polo shirt for dinner at Carraba’s, letting the kids play with play-dough in the car, visiting a new hairstylist for a major change, or the time I break-danced at a Mom’s Night Out and allowed that moment to be videoed. Tragic. And while none of these are monumental events that will forever change the fabric of my life, were I to sit back and view a compilation of micro-mistakes I have made over the course of any given week, I would undoubtably question why these 5 children have been entrusted to my care.
Then there are my failures that come from places of selfishness or ingratitude. The hurtful words spoken in moments of frustration. The disinterest in the knock knock joke presented way too many times. The days when I do not feel I have what it takes inside me to even make it to my children’s 8:00 bedtime. Days when I do not want to engage them, read to them, or play with them. The times when my anger boils over and one of them cries because I hurt them. These failures I struggle to forgive.
I strive to be the perfect woman, mother, and wife. So in my mind I must be in great physical shape, cheerful and pleasant, soft spoken with my children, a great cook (serving only organic, gluten-free, non-GMO to my children of course), master of all Pinterest ideas, amazing homeschool mom whose children graduate at 12, my husband’s helpmate who only encourages and never complains, flawless spiritual example to my children, selfless, hospitable, magic budgeter, well-read, consistent in flossing, night time face-washing, moisturizing and Kegels, toes always impeccably polished, etc. The list never ends. I will never attain this ideal. I will never measure up to the best that I see in all the other women in the world. So, I changed my ideal.
What if the goal is failure? Being human. Being approachable and disarming. Failing so often in my own strength that I have no choice but to deepen my dependence on God. Being willing to step into areas that I am certain to fail, because there is no way I can do what they require of me on my own. What if the successes in my world are failures in the Kingdom of God? What if success in God’s eyes has nothing to do with anything about the American Dream or the Perfect Mom? If I ask God to give me His eyes and He leads me down a path that I can only survive with Him, am I truly failing?
God has magnified my every weakness because He knows me. He knows that if I can do it on my own, I will forget my need for Him. Instead of mourning my failures, I desire to find His Presence right where I am and hide there while He bears my burdens. I want joy and peace in spite of my chaos which can only come from the Father. I want to fail.
“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 (NIV)