Thursday, November 08, 2007

Hello, My name is...

I was sipping some citrus-flavored mineral water at a party when she asked me.

It was a Let's get together and chat, have some tasty appetizers, listen to a presentation about home-based business, and then browse through a catalogue of gorgeous items while considering our budgets because some of us do not work home-based, mall-based, or otherwise-based kind of party.

And I do love me some tasty appetizers.

And shopping from my neighbor's easy chair.

So she asked me. She wasn't the first. Someone else at the party had asked the same thing.

"What do you do?"

As I swallowed my sip of citrus-flavored mineral water, I paused for a moment, considering her possible response, and I answered, "I am a Stay At Home Mom."


Several years ago, I would not have left it at that. I would have recited my resume of accomplishments, some fairly remarkable, but most not. I would have explained the whys and the how's and the maybe one days.

But not anymore.

Oh, I could tell her what I do. I do laundry. I do dishes. I do the floors. I do the grocery shopping. I even do windows, on occasion.

I get up in the morning, still sleepy from the night before, and I roll out of bed and shuffle to the coffee maker. I start warming the frozen pancakes for breakfast and then trod up the stairs to wake my sleepy daughter for school.

I trod back down the stairs, trying not to trip over the cat who thinks she is supposed to be the first one fed. Then I check on the microwaved pancakes, pour on the syrup (I don't skimp) and set the plate at the kitchen counter, calling upstairs for my sleepy daughter to come down to eat or we will be late this morning.

Meanwhile, my husband is getting ready for work and I am trying to make sure he has clean clothes, and tell him a quick Good Morning before he rushes out the door.

Once I get the sleepy daughter to eat, get dressed and brush her teeth and do a good job or you will end up at the dentist with a cavity, I head out the door in my sweats, no make-up, except for some under-eye concealer and take my daughter to school before I start my day of doing laundry, doing dishes, and doing the grocery shopping.

But the woman at this party eating spinach-artichoke dip doesn't really want to know all of that. She doesn't really want to know what I do. What she really wants to know is who I am.

For some women, who they are is so tightly woven into what they do, that they soon lose who they are. When asked, they say, "I am a mother. I am a wife. I am a teacher. I am a doctor." Yes, they are all of those things, and all of those things are so very important in forming who they are.

And what about me? I am a wife. I am a mother. I am a Stay At Home Mom. I am a Sunday School teacher. I am all of those things, but lately, I am learning and listening and seeing that there is only one job, one identity that is truly important.

I am His.

So when I am doing the laundry and the dishes, and even the windows, my prayer is that I will reflect what Christ would have me be through Him. I fail miserably, mostly when I try to do everything in my own strength. It is when I give it all to God, that His Love shines through, not mine. Only when I humble myself and remember what I am not, can I share with other people what an awesome God He is.

My prayer, my hope, is that when people meet me, they won't wonder what I do, or who I am. They won't even want to know anything about me, but somehow through my faith and failures in this imperfect life I live, they will want to know The God who helps me through it all.

They will only see Him for Who He is. They will see His goodness. His mercy. His love. And they will turn to Him and say, "Nice to meet you."


Shannon@Idylwild said...

What a wonderful post! I used to explain, too. Or say "just." "I'm just a mom." I'm so thankful for the work He's done in me that allows me to see the value in what I do - because He values it. Even if I do still get that smug "oh" from women at parties...

Grafted Branch @ Restoring the Years said...

I am His.

I love that, Melanie. Beautifully shared today.

Linda said...

"...through my faith and failures in this imperfect life I live, they will want to know The God who helps me through it all."
I am sure it happens more than you know.

Rocks In My Dryer said...

Wow. Amazing post.

Big Mama said...

Love this post. Oh if I could just remember the most important thing is I am His, it puts everything else in perspective.

Merrie said...

GREAT word! Thank you! Even after the kids grow up and move out and you get a "job" - it is still important to remember. Well, it is always important to know and remember that I am His and it is not about my "do", but about Him. Thank you for reminding us!

Dawn said...

It really does put everything in perspective, doesn't it? That was really nice.

Amy said...

What a really inspired post! I hope you don't mind but I'd really like to post the whole thing, in entirely on my blog - giving you due credit of course. I'd just really like for everyone who reads my blog to make sure to read this. It's really wonderful! If you object, I'll take it down.

Laura said...

Thank you for taking the time to write this and to share it on your blog. I needed to 'hear' the reminder today that above everything else I do, I am who I am because of Christ Jesus!

jubilee said...

Thanks for the great reminder.

Amy said...

Thank for you for this reminder today. Thanks for an amazing post!

Nancy said...

I love that "Iam His" so nice!!

nancygrayce said...

I can just say AMEN! I want so much for people to see Jesus in everything I do....I know they don't yet....but He's working on me!

Sista Cala said...

Great post Melanie. I needed the reminder that I only have one identity that really makes a difference.
"...doesn't really want to know all of that." There never was a truer statement. It is just like when folks greet you in a hallway and say, "hi, how are you?" They don't really want to know. Just try telling them something other than "fine" and see what happens.

Lisa@Take90West said...

Amazing. And Inspiring.

April said...

This is really beautiful. It really puts things in perspective. Thanks!

daisyaday said...

The stay-at-home mom part is for a season. Savor everything you can.

The His part is forever. Beautifully put. Thank you for that word today.

gina roldan said...

your post ministered to me.. thank you for sharing this. I am a 27 yr old filipina, SAHM and believer as well. i often wonder how i could make being a SAHM more interesting for others. but then,in the end it really doesn't matter. All that matters is that I am His :)