It may seem obvious to you that a calling is not reducible to a “to do” list, but that idea is actually something I have been reflecting on lately. As someone who values productivity and accomplishments, it’s easy for me to break big ideas down into their component parts, determine what needs to be done in order to complete a given project, and immediately start working to finish those tasks. Life consists of more than that, though.
My primary calling right now is to focus on being a wife to Matt and mom to Miranda. That means supporting Matt with respect, encouragement, love, and practical help, and it means loving Miranda with hugs and songs, nursing and tickles, conversations and snuggles, and increasingly teaching and correction as we move into what Matt and I are calling her “lusts of the flesh” stage. There is certainly a multitude of tasks that go into that calling – keeping up with laundry (for both our clothes and Miranda’s cloth diapers), making baby food, managing our family’s calendar, sitting down to nurse Miranda, dealing with our finances, reading to Matt, grocery shopping, researching home-schooling, cooking dinners, conversing about art, working a few hours each week, doing dishes, reading about parenting…and much, much more. When I concentrate only on those tasks, though, I’m missing out on what’s really important. My days become a race to get through as many items as possible. I stop thinking about loving Matt and start wishing he would do the dishes so I could cross something else off my list (and without even having to do it!).
But wait. Stop. Is that really, ultimately what my life is about? Laundry and dishes? How many items I can cross off a list in any given day? Is that really all God has called me to? No. How discouraging that would be. My life is about loving and honoring God. It’s about worship. And within that ultimate calling, it’s about loving my husband, enjoying him, growing alongside him, supporting him as an artist and a teacher. It’s about loving Miranda and raising her up to know Jesus, to love and serve other people, to be excellent in whatever she is called to do and be. And wow – that is amazing, glorious stuff. It may include many daily tasks – but it does not consist of those tasks. What could be better? I really can’t think of anything. I’m loving this. What a calling, what a life 🙂