The Quest for Organizational Utopia

I have a problem. I’m addicted to organizational items like; Rubbermaid containers, boxes, totes, baskets, buckets and jars. I also have an extreme fondness for office supplies. My addictions aren’t my problem though…My problem is disorganization.

To the untrained eye I appear to be organized. I like symmetry and order. I like things to have ‘a place’ and expect things to be in their ‘place’. Colleagues who walk into my classroom or office are often marveled at my uncluttered shelves, colour coded baskets, matchy-matchy accents and labels on everything. What they don’t know is, although it looks like I’m organized and efficient, I’m never content with the arrangement or ‘order’ of things. I’m constantly shuffling, moving, rearranging, and re-organizing.

My my need for order lives at home as well. I find comfort in the predictable and  organized. I prefer to be in rooms which are clutter and nique naque free. I avoid rooms which are unkept and messy because I truly feel anxious when I’m in them. So, I avoid those rooms. I avoid anything that makes me feel overwhelmed.

Organized space brings me a sense of peace and balance. Disorganized and cluttered spaces elevate anxiety and frustration within me. I feel the need to do one of two things within a disorganized space; run away from it or organize it. Lately I default to avoidance and frustration which doesn’t solve the problem but only exasperates it. So maybe today I’ll reorganize something… I wonder if I have enough matchy-matchy baskets, totes, buckets, jars and labels?

Just Do Your Job

Our perception of others and their circumstances is often very narrow and foggy. We often make quick ‘snapshot’ views and judgements based on our narrow and often cloudy perception of others. I’ve come to learn I often infer, formulate theories and draw conclusions about people and their circumstances based on my perception of the ‘tip of the iceberg’.

Today’s scripture reminds me of how narrow and subjective our humanly perception is in comparison to God’s broad, objective view is. God warns us not to judge one another because we don’t have His expansive and perfect insight into all the variables and factors which effect the lives of others around us. It is not our job to judge one another. Our job is simply to be kind and compassionate towards each other. We must be kind and compassionate to each other even when we don’t see the ‘big picture’. In fact, we don’t need to see the ‘big picture’, that’s God’s job. We are to support one another along our journey.

Be a Wise Woman, Build Your House Up

1The wise woman builds her house, 
but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down.
Proverbs 14:1 (NIV)

Build Your House Up

I’ve really been struggling to be the best mom I can be to our two children.

Our sixteen year old daughter and I have a wonderful relationship. I’m often told she’s a ‘Mini Me’. We have great communication, share the same sense of humour and a flare for the creative & dramatic. Our mother/daughter relationship isn’t perfect but it’s easy.

Our fourteen year old son and I have ‘locked horns’ since day one. He & I share moodiness, stubbornness and anxiousness, which makes for a more ‘prickly’ relationship. We both say and do things in a reactive way when annoyed. We say mean, nasty, hateful things when fueled by frustration and anxiety. The same words and actions that elevate my reactions are the same ones that ignite reactiveness within him. I recognize and know this but I still react stupidly.

I’m thankful today for this scripture because it reminds me that a wise woman seeks to be filled with the grace and discernment of the Lord. She doesn’t have to be alone in her struggles because she has God. A wise woman is quick to listen and slow to respond. A wise woman seeks God’s council in all things including, parenting. In stead, I default by reacting to irritants. This scripture reminds me to ‘press pause’, seek God’s council and grace in everything even, ‘prickly’ parenting situations.

My Confidence is God’s Confidence

True Confidence is God Confidence

“But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord
whose confidence is in him. Jeremiah 17:7 (NIV)

True Confidence is God Confidence

Women can be hard on themselves. Moms can be hard on themselves. I am often hard on myself as a mom. My desire is to be the best mom I can be so my kids will grow up to be productive, kind, balanced, happy, contributing members of society.  However, I’m slowly learning striving to be ‘the best mom’ I can be is overwhelming and self-destructive. I put a lot of undue pressure on myself to be a ‘Super Mom’ to the point of becoming overwhelmed, miserable and dysfunctional. Is this what motherhood is about? How will I ever survive the ‘teen years’?

Today’s devotional reading, “No More Perfect Moms” by Jill Savage (CEO, Hearts at Home) along with scripture verse (Jeremiah 17:7 (NIV), reminded me I don’t have to get re-entangled in self-doubt and insecurities because my confidence is ‘God’s Confidence’. I’m reminded He has designed me and has a plan for my life, His plan. He created me to fulfil his purpose and desires and is pleased with me, His creation, just the way I am. His confidence in me will always break the hold my own insecurities have over me. If I humble myself to His grace daily He’ll calm my heart. I don’t have to be ‘super mom’ I just have to be…in Him. I just need to allow His confidence to be my confidence.

Thank you God!

Stop the Comparisons!

Genesis 4:1-8

Cain and Abel

1 Adam lay with his wife Eve, and she became pregnant and gave birth to Cain. She said, “With the help of the LORD I have brought forth a man.” 
2Later she gave birth to his brother Abel. Now Abel kept flocks, and Cain worked the soil. 
3 In the course of time Cain brought some of the fruits of the soil as an offering to the LORD. 
4 But Abel brought fat portions from some of the firstborn of his flock. The LORD looked with favor on Abel and his offering, 
5 but on Cain and his offering he did not look with favor. So Cain was very angry, and his face was downcast. 
6 Then the LORD said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? 
7 If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must master it.” 
8Now Cain said to his brother Abel, “Let’s go out to the field.” And while they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him.

Stop the Comparisons!

God made each one of us uniquely to suit his desires, purposes and plans. Why though do we continually compare ourselves to others?

As early as the garden of Eden though, man compared & contrasted himself to God and others. Man was originally happy and content being God’s Creation until Satan whispered words of doubt, confusion and envy into the hearts and minds of Eve then Adam. These poisonous doubts immediately poisoned the perception Adam and Eve had of themselves. Out of this doubt and warped self perception grew envy, shame, guilt, competitiveness and eventually hatred within the heart of one of Adam & Eve’s sons, Cain.

This tainted self perception continued with the birth of Cain & Abel. Cain felt inferior to his brother Abel. This inferiority rapidly morphed into poor self concept and hatred to the point where Cain murdered his brother Abel out of sheer jealousy and an extremely saddened self concept.

It is essential for each child of God to undoubtedly see, feel and understand he/she has been ‘fearfully and wonderfully made’ Psalm 139:14 (NIV) for God’s desire and purpose. He created and values each one of us as individuals. He loves us equally. We have inherited a competitive, comparative often warped view of ourselves. We need to remember this warped self perception was bred through Satan’s whispered lies into the ear of Eve. This sprinkle of doubt infused by Satan is a lie. As women we need to guard our hearts against these lies of comparison that culture and media continually pushes into our view.