Theater was once all I lived for. Every Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday throughout high school found me acting, singing, and dancing (or trying at least) my heart out at an after-school drama company. Among the sweetest people I ever acted beside was this adorable red-headed girl, Gracie. Her big smile matched her big heart and I never failed to be rejuvenated by her lighthearted and kind disposition. A decade later (my, how we’ve aged) we’ve reconnected over our writing, and it is my complete joy to welcome Grace Kelley to the tribe today.
If we’re being horrifyingly honest here, it’s been one of those days. The children have been screaming at each other all morning. And I’ve been screaming back. The laundry has piled up and the glamour of not having a dishwasher in our new house has officially worn off.
I’ve lost my temper. My patience. My goodwill at times. I’m almost positive that I’ve lost my sanity as well.
And on days like today, I feel like a fraud. A failure. A poor pretender at the job of mothering my children. It is so easy on days like today, to let the weight of my sin and my kids sin, to pull me down into the pit of despair. I don’t like feeling so weak. So helpless. So desperately needy.
But I am not what I do; neither my failures nor my successes. I am not my bad days, or my good days. I am not defined by how tidy my home is, how well behaved my children are, or how good of a meal I can put on the table. I am not defined by how well I lead the ladies of our small group, or how well I reach out to my neighbors. I am not defined by the books I read, or even, dear reader, by the words I write.
I am ONLY defined by the precious blood of Jesus Christ. The God who knew me before the dawn of time, who called me out of darkness and into his marvelous light. Who calls me Beloved. And when I am about to be swallowed up by the pile of my fears and my failures he speaks to me saying,
“Fear not, for I have Redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.” (Isaiah 43:1)
This morning as I write this, “supermom” feels like that farthest thing from what I am. Perfect, is impossibly out of reach. But Jesus calls me out of that tomb, and asks that instead of looking at myself, that I look to him. He keeps teaching me not to place my identity in what I do (or don’t do), in my successes or failures; instead he asks that I choose to believe that what he has said about me is true. That I am HIS. That I am Beloved. That his blood has cleansed me, made me white as snow. That all of his righteousness has been given to me, in the place of all of my sin and my shame. That the Gospel is big enough for a woman like me.
If you are reading these words, then you are witnessing the miracle. If Jesus is our stronghold, or foundation, and our truest deepest sense of identity and worth, then we can rejoice even in the midst of our worst days, because HE STILL CHOOSES US. We belong to him. And nothing can snatch us out of his hand! That’s the Gospel. That’s good news that I need today. Maybe you need it too.
Grace Kelley is married to her high school sweet heart and is mother to two kids adorable children, Ellie (three-and-a-half) and Boaz (almost 22 months.) She is a stay at home mom and aspiring writer. You can find her writing at gracemortonkelley.wordpress.
com and someday on the pages of her current book project Confessions of a Recovering Perfectionist. She and her family have made their home in Ft. Collins, Colorado.