A month ago I was watching an episode of Hoarders: Collection (um yah, sometimes it’s the only thing that motivates me to clean my house) and my ears perked up during a conversation a counselor was having with a client on her porch. He brings out a bag full of empty cans from her house and sits down with her and her adult daughter.
The counselor asks her, “So what’s your thoughts about the cans?”
hoarder: “I see potential in everything. Lots of things you could do with tin snips, make flowers, all kinds of crafts…”
counselor: “Well you said you see potential in everything except yourself.”
hoarder: “Well I’m too old for potential anymore.”
counselor: “So theoretically this can has more potential than you.”
She nods and looks down.
Now I understand that the hopeless condition of this woman’s soul is a product of a painful abusive marriage that ended 20 years ago. My beautiful life cannot compare to her pain and loss but there was a part of me that could relate with what her counselor was getting at. I myself had just recently questioned my own worth and potential.
A friend told me about a writer’s conference called Jumping Tandem. I wanted to go so bad and I really needed to go. Seemed like it might actually work out until my husband said that he accepted an invitation to help some family members four hours away. Grandma and grandpa would be on vacation in Mexico. Fiona would need to go to a birthday party and Tony would have a baseball game. Who would watch my kids that needed to be in two different places at once! This was a logistical nightmare! And of all weekends why must it be this one?
My thoughts turn to…
“Looks like I’m staying home to hold everything together, like always, (very dramatically) and always will.
It gets worse though. Check out these other pity party thoughts I was entertaining…
“Serves me right, though. I don’t generate any income for our family so why should I spend it on improving me.”
“The family four hours away has a much more noble cause so why shouldn’t Jeff go help them.”
“Don’t be so selfish Bri”
But my heart was crying out! …”I’m home all the time! Everything I do is for the advancement of my husband and kids. Just this once I want to go and invest in me. Seriously my time away would amount to less than 24hours. Can’t I have that Lord? Am I being so selfish in wanting this?”
Then I thought of the hoarder and her can. And I thought of all the potential I see in my dear friends. If they ever came to me with such lies and an invitation to a pity party I would immediately tell them to stop it and do what ever it took to go to that conference. I knew I had much more potential than trash. My dreams, desires and talents are always worth fighting for. Pursuing dreams will usually be inconvenient on some level. Inconvenient for me and my family.
I felt like the Lord was saying, “Well how bad do you want this Bri, ’cause I’m not going to make it easy for you. Do you think it’s worth all this. Are you worth all this? Do you believe you are worth investing in?”
The hoarder refused to have a vision for her life. I knew that I didn’t want to get stuck in that kind of self-depreciating rut – I wanted to get in my groove!
Ok you moms, how many times have you had those same thoughts?
…”Husbands and kid needs come first all the time. How could I ever ask them to bend over backwards on my behalf?”
Well picture yourself 40 years in the future and hearing the same words that our hoarder’s daughter told the counselor “It’s hard to hear my own mom say that there is more potential in a something that is trash than there is in her.”
I do believe that our kids and husbands take great pride in watching us pursue impossible dreams. Have you ever stopped to wonder that just maybe they would love to bend over backwards on your behalf the same way you love to do it for them? Seriously, we only need to ask. But we won’t ask if deep down we don’t think we are worth it.
The Lord was not making this weekend event difficult so as to cruelly dangle some unattainable fruit in my face. He really wanted me to see that I was worth fighting for. I think The Lord wanted my husband and kids to see me fighting for this dream too. I think He smiled in relief when I decided that I was. After all, He paid so much for me. With His very life He told me how much I was worth.
-Here’s A Good Word-
Twice Paul encouraged Timothy to pursue his talents and invest in himself.
Do not neglect your gift…. -1 Timothy 4:14
…I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you… -2 Timothy 1:6
What are some dangers of having that pity party in front of your husband and kids?
I would never want my kids or husband to feel like they were the reason I never did the things I always wanted to.
Tell me about a time that the Lord did not make it come easy, whatever it was.
Is it easier for you to invest family resources into every member of the family except you? Why?
Tomorrow… I’ll tell you the rest of the story. Was I able to get it together to go to the JumpingTandem conference? How hard would I have to fight for this… and a special message from My Darling (husband Jeff)