How To Not Be Overwhelmed At Home
I was in the thick of the yucky (and unexpected) first trimester of pregnancy—exhausted, sick, nauseated all day long— with little to no patience for my three already existing children. There were boxes to pack, a new house to prepare for moving day and the kids to entertain through it all. The to-do list was long, my patience short and my energy completely zapped. Moving day arrived and a close family member ended up in the hospital, altering our plans. What followed was a crazy season full of back and forth from house to house, boxes left unpacked, and a perfectly synchronized rotation of sick children. I could not seem to get ahead; it was one thing after another, and I was most definitely overwhelmed!
Through this season, God taught me a few things about who He is and His desire for us to live an abundant life instead of an overwhelmed one.
3 Things To Remember When We’re Overwhelmed At Home
1. God is a God of Order.
Sometimes, days and seasons spin completely out of our control, and we feel like we are living in chaos. But, one thing God is not is a god of chaos. Our situation may feel chaotic, but we must trust that Our Creator is not chaotic. He is creative, and He creates with purpose and order. When God created the world, He created it in an orderly fashion. He had a plan and His creation is good (Genesis 1:1-31).
Things to consider:
- When situations seem chaotic and out of control, am I trusting God? God has a plan and reason for every single thing that happens in our lives. Am I submitting fully to His plan for me?
- As I strive to follow Jesus, am I pursuing creativity and order in my home and for my family? Children crave and need boundaries. Creativity without order causes unsettledness. Order without creativity becomes rigid and legalistic. We need both in our lives and in our homes.
- At times, I’ve had to ask, “Is this God being creative or am I making wrong choices?” Your life may be chaotic because you are outside God’s will and it’s time to stop doing something you shouldn’t be doing.
2. He does not expect perfection.
I wanted everything in my new home to be perfect as soon as we moved in! Boxes unpacked, cabinets organized, rooms decorated and throw in the perfectly behaved kids while we’re at it. That has yet to happen. A year into our move, we still have boxes to unpack, closets to organize and pictures to hang.
We were not created to be perfect. Jesus is our perfection. God does not expect us to be perfect and is not ashamed of our imperfections. When we strive for perfection, an unattainable goal, we end up overwhelmed.
Hebrews 2:11 says, “Both the one who makes people holy and those who are made holy are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters.”
Things to consider:
- When I let go of perfection and receive God’s grace, I am then called to live in it and extend it to others.
- What ideal of perfection do I need to let go of that will immediately make my home less stressful for my family and me?
- Am I extending grace to my husband and my children or expecting perfection from them as well?
3. In Jesus, I have the ability to lavishly love.
1 Peter 4:8 says, “Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.”
We are going to mess up. We will feel like we failed as mothers, and our children will have bad days as well. Let’s take time to soak in Jesus’s love and mercy so it can overflow to those around us. Stop and smile. Laugh. Hug. Cup their sweet faces in your hands and let them know that they are loved more than the list of things to get done, the errands to run, the emails to respond to, the laundry to fold. Children spell love T-I-M-E. Make it a priority to spend individual time with each child on a regular basis. Lavish your sweet blessing with love!
Things to consider:
- Am I showing my family I value them above all else? Do they know they are most important or are my actions pointing them to believe otherwise?
- Am I aware of my children’s love language? Am I being intentional about showing them love the way they receive it best?
When I step back from my circumstances and focus my gaze on Jesus, it is much easier to remember what is most important as a mom, so I can release the rest and live a life of joy and peace.
By Vanessa Brown