For the last two years I've wanted more than anything to do something big to make a difference in this world for good. To make it a better place than it is. To make a real impact for good. I heard and read stories of families who did this together and children learned valuable lessons serving along side their parents. I've been praying over this off and on for these two years and at every idea I've come up with and been inspired by, all my best efforts to approach the idea have come to nothing. The demands of my children and family have prevented me from "being the change I want to see in the world". I even came to hate my life situation (partly because of this desire to be and do more, and partly because there are many problems being as introverted as I am and having boys as loud as mine are, which leave me overwhelmed and empty before my day is over) wondering what better opportunities I might have had if I just stayed single (which feeling also filled me with guilt just for feeling it). I've been reading, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking, and in it, while talking about how to figure out what profession you should persue as an introvert the author says (among other things) to, "pay attention to what you envy. Jealousy is an ugly emotion, but it tells the truth. You mostly envy those who have what you desire." (p. 218). At first I thought, "I don't envy anyone, I just hate my life how it is right now." But actually while writing this post I realized I envy the people who travel to places where people really want the Gospel and they bring their family and serve God together and they make a real meaningful impact in people's lives. But I'm a stay at home mom, and just don't have the means right now to do anything like that, and my kids aren't ages where I could trust them not to, for example, run off in the airport and get lost before we've even made it to Africa.
Well, praying over my calling or mission or role in God's work (whatever you wish to call it) one morning, God said, "Be the change you want to see in your home!" I got up motivated and I wrote it on my mirror and made a sign for my kitchen, and then oddly enough the rest of my day ended up much like all the others. Me perpetuating the things I don't like within my family culture just as much as my husband and children do. I can't blame the kids they're just following the things they've learned from me and my husband. But all of us seem to be stuck in a rutt unable to change the direction we are headed. The inertia feels stronger than my ability to pull us in another direction. I realized inertia this strong (ten years in the making) is going to take a lot of force to shift it in another direction.
The next day, praying now about how to follow this instruction, how to be the change I want to see in my home, I begged for grace to overcome my weaknesses, to make my weaknesses strengths, to get out of this damning rutt! I felt like I need my home blessed and I wanted my Rabbi to do it. I asked my husband and he approved. I also asked if he would be willing to have Bible study in our home, and he said he would. So I attended church and told my Rabbi and set up the blessing, and talked to the people I wanted to invite to this Bible study.
This will not only give me more motivation to study my Bible, it will do so much more. It will motivate me to keep my home clean and organized, it will help me teach my children and be the example I should be and want to be and yet am not, it will help me learn more from the passages I study by discussing them with others, it will be the push I need to change my direction and get out of the deep rut I've carved together with my husband for the last ten years. At least, these are the things it has the potential to do. I'm not giving up on myself yet!
God bless you, and if you, like me just aren't in a position to be the change you want to see in the world, then first be the change you want to see in your home, then in your community, and on. When the time is right and you and your family are ready to take on the world more power to you! And if you are already working to be the change you want to see in the world, then keep up the good work! Shalom.