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Not 'just a mom'

... and so much more.

Two weeks ago today I joined the women at Allume for what would be a life-changing experience for so many of us. There is much on my heart and I hope to share them here, eventually.

This week I made a decision. I resigned from the two remaining volunteer positions that I feel I simply no longer have a gifting for - my seasons have changed. The freedom I feel from that "letting go" is enormous. I suddenly have an enthusiasm and energy that has been missing far too long. I can feel my creativity seeping back into my soul. Thank you, Jesus, for every mercy!!

I hope to share here on a more regular basis. I have new dreams and new ideas. Not big ideas but rather smallish ideas. God directed ideas I believe.

I have heard that Mother Teresa once said something like:

Don't look for big things, just do small things with great love....

The smaller the thing, the greater must be our love.

Never mind that when I go to Google to look it up there are disagreements about whether or not these were really her words - whether they were or not doesn't really matter. The thought behind it makes absolute sense. I've spent a lot of time thinking I had to go to far away places and do 'big' things to make a difference in the world, to be a light for Christ. Now I get it - that isn't where God put me. He put me right here in the mid-west in a suburban neighborhood. He answered my prayer as a young girl and made me a wife and a mother and blessed me beyond my wildest dreams. And after struggling mightily for so long He revealed to me that I don't have to strive so hard to do those big things. I can make a difference right here, right where I am, right now. I can do small things with great love, yes, I can!

Where am I going to start? I'm going to start by inviting my friends, neighbors and acquaintances to my home for some girl time with food and drink and laughter - and scissors, old jeans and recyclable milk cartons. I'm going to invite them to join me for a "shoe party" and the opportunity to help children in a far away place in a very real way. Some things are so simple we look past them when they're right in front of us. I feel like I have been wasting so much time! While I searched for ways to bring friends together because I believe so many of us are feeling isolated and lonely I hosted social events - Bunco nights, Moms' Night Out and other similar events we "just moms" are familiar with. But I see now that I could have used those opportunities to do so much more and still bring women together, make lasting friendships and ease the pain of loneliness and burnout.

My idea is to do what I do best - bring people and food together for refreshment and rejuvenation but I'm adding an element I know we all really desire - acts of kindness and charity. We can help others while we encourage each other in our own struggles. This seems the very essence of "doing small things with great love". It causes no neglect of our homes and families, doesn't belittle the work we do and provides an even greater sense of purpose.

So excited. Looking forward to plugging into opportunities already available to reach out and help others whether in our own communities or on the other side of the world. I'm a bit sad at how many Christmas Seasons have passed when I never took the opportunity to make a Shoe Box... a small thing with such great love.

What do you think? Are you a "just mom" who would like to join other "just moms" for some fun social time while making a difference? Can you think of organizations that provide opportunities for people to do these types of things right in their own homes? Here is a short list of the opportunities I came face-to-face with while at Allume:

  • Sole Hope

    • My first event will be this month! A Shoe Party!

  • Free the Girls

    • Bra-Bunco - yep, you read that right. I'm gonna have a Bunco Party and ask you all to bring your gently used bras that you no longer want or need.

    • I'll be asking the Christian book shop where my daughter works to become a drop-off location!

  • Operation Christmas Child

    • Too late to have an event this year but I'll be adding my boxes to my brother's church collection when I return to my hometown and I'll certainly be adding it to my list to do next year!

And there are so many more!!! Please help me by commenting and adding opportunities you know about!!

I pray today you will feel God's comforting presence and experience an abundance of JOY!

Peace be with you,


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