I've just spent four days in two different hospitals.
That's something I didn't expect. At all.
I found out, for sure, that I have a heart defect. The same one my mother has, and even potentially my sister, although she has never been formally diagnosed either.
While I spent four days being literally poked and prodded, anxiety-ridden, and eventually, "studied" on (I had to undergo a heart study surgical procedure to locate and possibly destroy the defect) I was filled with confusion and loneliness.
They couldn't fix me. I will live the rest of my life managing a heart that loves to run the show at times. But I can manage it. I will. Because it's His expectation for me.
I realized yesterday that I've lived with completely ridiculous rigid expectations of myself which more than likely led me to this point. The point where my body said "enough!".
What God expects from us
1) He expects us to spend time with Him. Period. Everyday. No exceptions.
2) He expects us to care for the body (the temple) He gave us. [Stay hydrated. Don't fill it with poison. Exercise. Repeat.]
3) He expects us to share His love.
We cannot effectively do number three if we aren't caring about numbers one and two. I realized this. It seems so elementary, but yet most of us are just like the way I used to live: bodies tired and abused, mentally drained, and spiritually dead.
I've been offering my lifeless body on the altar of motherhood for over eight years.
Having babies. Nursing those babies. Sacrificing everything you know about you for those babies. Becoming only good at motherhood, is not glorifying to God. It's not glorifying to our families.
Those things are wonderful and I am so thankful and grateful to God for my five babies and nursing and homeschooling and stay-at-home-mothering. But I can't be my best at any of those things if I cling to my own sinful expectations of myself and throw God's expectations out of the window.
Our husbands. Ohhhh, how I have gone wrong here.
Your husbands expectations of you matter.
How many times has your husband offered to "take the baby", "rock the baby", "feed the baby", and you refuse?! (And further, robbed him of both bonding with his child and exercising his parenting skills).
How many times have you belittled his parenting opinion because you see yourself as the only parenting expert in the house?!
Do your children see you actively loving your husband the most?! No, not just saying it, but being and doing it.
We've been robbing our God, our husbands, our children, and our communities when we only live according to our expectations. But God's expectations bring life and blessing. Joy and contentment. Our husbands expectations of us can bring peace and calm to our households. Deeper and richer love to our marriages. A life we are too afraid to have because it means we aren't ultimately in control of it.
So I repented. To both my God and my husband. For being too stubborn to change. For being too selfish to care for myself. That sounds like a great contradiction, but that's how some of us mamas are. Selfishness drives our lack for self-care. We can't give all we have to our children and give the scraps to our God and our husbands. It's sinful. And I'm being honest with you when I say that I have.
My heart is defective. But it won't take my life from me. My heart is filled with sin, but I'm choosing to not let it kill me too.
I am going to make a choice. A very hard, but necessary to choice to replace my personal expectations with my Gods. To make every effort to please Him with my body, my mind, and my heart.
We only do this life once. There are no do-overs. Put your expectations aside...and LIVE.