I Haven't Lost the Baby Weight

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It's true,  I haven't lost the baby weight. I've been carrying it around for awhile now, really ever since I saw those two pink lines on that plastic stick. It has been a heavy burden to carry. It weighs me down, keeps me up at night, causes stress, and keeps my mind occupied with a hundred options and outcomes. But this goes beyond the few extra pounds I carry; no, this weight is far heavier. It's the weight of responsibility. Have you carried this weight? It's the one that burdens you when you can't afford to buy all organic food. It crushes you with guilt and worry--it's not just an apple, it's probably life and death.

It's the burden you bear as you research and weigh every option and consequence. Making the wrong decision could lead to dire consequences after all.

It's the pit in your stomach you carry around for days when you make a mistake, like giving your baby an overdose of Tylenol.

It's the guilt that you aren't like that momma you are idolizing . . . you don't play long enough, breastfeed long enough, make your own baby food, keep perfect house, read enough stories . . . it tells you that your kids are surely getting the short end of the stick with you for a mom.

It's the weight of feeling like if you can just say enough, do enough, and be enough, you'll have control over whatever scares you most as a mom.

It's the feeling that the success or failure, health or sickness, even the number of days that little baby has ahead of him or her lies in your hands.

It's a heavy weight to carry.

We can find freedom from this weight. However, weight loss always takes time, effort, and perseverance--even when the weight isn't a physical one. We can lose this baby weight, dear momma friend, but we have to learn to trust in the One far greater than ourselves.

Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. Luke 12:6-8

This type of baby weight often stems from fear. What are you afraid of? What are you trying to change or prevent by doing x, y, & z? Freedom comes when we recognize that we are loved by God. That our children are loved by God. That if the common sparrows are not forgotten by God, neither are our children. Freedom comes when we accept that while we cannot ultimately control that which scares us, we can trust the One who is in control, who tells us not to fear. {for more encouragement, read The Supermom Mentality: I can be Enough}

So do not fear, for I am with you;do not be dismayed, for I am your God.I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10

Freedom from this weight comes when we recognize that our days, and the days of our children have already been determined {Job 14:5a}. We cannot add to or subtract from these days by worrying or striving to do all these things that occupy our attention.

Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? Matthew 6:25-27

Now let me add that is it good to desire to give our children good things {even the Lord delights in giving us good things as our Father. See Matthew 7:7-11}. Where it becomes a problem however is when we become driven out of fear, responsibility, and control. Simply, when a joy becomes a burden.

And finally, freedom from this baby weight comes when we recognize that all these things we worry about and hold onto, really are not important. I love the story of Martha & Mary because I identify with Martha. I am intense and driven, thoughtful and prepared. I think through every situation, what needs done, how to do it, and what the outcome needs to be. I am direct and don't hide my emotions {or frustration}, Martha and I even communicate in similar manners. We are very similar women; and if we could chit-chat today, I'd imagine we would share most of the same concerns, fears, and desire for control.

As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him.She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said.But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:38-42

I don't see the Lord as harshly chastising Martha in this passage. I see care, concern, and tenderness in His eyes as He sees the burden she was carrying for everything. As the passage plays out in my head, I see Him shifting her focus and calming her anxious heart.

I think that we can apply this to so many burdens, worries, and distractions that plague us:

Lord, don't you care that . . .

I had to have a c-section?

I have no time to make homemade dinners?

I can't keep up on laundry?

My child has autism?

I can't afford all organic food?

This child only wants to snuggle when I have work to do?

My baby had to be on formula?

The list could go on and on and on . . . but the answer is always the same:

"Daughter, daughter, you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one."

Dear momma friend, we are worried and upset about many things so often. If you are still carrying around the baby weight, it's time to let it go. It's time to learn to live in the freedom from guilt, fear, and burden our Father in Heaven offers us. Allow me to pray for us dear friend,

Dear Father,

You see us here, we are the women carrying worry and burdens for so many things. We are weary, burned out, and frustrated. We often come to You angry and frustrated that You don't seem to see or care. But we are so distracted, we seldom stay around for the answer. Father, I ask you to tenderly remind us of the one thing that is necessary. Help us to release our burdens of worry, fear, and control to You. Teach us to walk in the truth and freedom You offer us.

I ask this in the name of Jesus, amen.

Go in freedom and grace, dear momma friend.

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Post linked at Mom's Morning Coffee, A Little R & R, The Deliberate Mom, A Mama's Story