August 23, 2011

What's Yours?

As if it needs to be said after this summer of posts, I'm pretty passionate about ministry. Although there are days when I want to run away to my imaginary house in the Texas Hill Country, where I would sit on the porch for hours doing absolutely nothing, I really do enjoy partnering with my husband in this calling. Because of that and because I love encouraging other women who are ministry-minded, I will continue to write in that direction.

But I do have other passions and I do spend my time on other things. In fact, I think it's necessary and healthy for ministry wives (or for that matter, all wives, moms, and anyone breathing) to have interests/passions that they pursue, that they make time to pursue. 

What are yours?

When I had babies in my arms and toddlers wrapped around my legs, that question used to stress me out. I know, I'd think, that my passions and interests (other than my precious angels, of course) are somewhere in there, tucked away behind the sleeplessness and the spit up. Kyle, ever so-helpful, would say to me, "What you need is some time away from the kids!" and he'd shoo me out the door. Having been shooed--no pushed--out the door for the sake of my sanity, I would sit in the car and debate how to use the free time. Sometimes I would actually cry to Kyle, like he was torturing me: But if I go away for a few hours, I don't know what I would do! 

Melodrama aside, that simple question (simple before I had kids) regarding my interests and passions brought up so much fear in my heart. Fear that I was uninteresting. Fear that I would forget the passions and gifts lying dormant. Fear that if I pursued them, I would fail or look stupid or be regarded as placing my own interests above my family's. Fear to actually name my passions and even greater fear to say them out loud to other people. Fear that I would be wasting my time.

But the thing about a passion is that it's often from God and it won't let up on you until you give in to it. So I took baby steps at first and felt guilty and fearful and silly which each one. I learned a whole stinkin' lot, including this: you don't have to wait until your children are older or your husband is home or you have a baby or you get married or you get to stop working your 9-5 job to pursue a passion. You're not a bad mom or a bad wife if you don't focus every last ounce of energy on them. Rather, you will be a more life-filled mom and wife because you pursue your passion. (Obviously, this isn't true if you're Elizabeth Gilbert in the midst of writing Eat, Pray, Love.)

So, go ahead, say it out loud. What's your passion? What do you want to pursue to the glory of God?

In the next few posts, I'm going to explore this topic more. Like: How do you know your passions? How do you make time to pursue them? How do you battle fear? and more. Join me! And share too! I love to hear from readers.