“What’s new? How’s the family?”

“We’re good. My wife is due to have our 3rd child in just a couple of weeks. A boy this time.”

A recent conversation with an old friend started innocently enough. We exchanged pleasantries and a few humorous jabs at each other. However, the talk turned more serious as he started explaining some of the challenges he was facing. These weren’t serious issues, but more like inconveniences. You know…new job, transitioning to a new house, young kids and all the stress that comes with that.

I couldn’t help but find myself joining in. I explained how my two girls are 8 and 6 years old, so it’s been a long time since we’ve had an infant in the house. “I’m not sure I’m ready for diapers and sleepless nights again,” I explained. “I also worry about not having enough time for my daughters. We won’t be able to go to movies as often, or take a random road trip for a fun weekend, or just pick up and go as we please without extra planning and extra baby gear. And don’t get me started on the extra expense of a new baby,” I stated dishearteningly.

The conversation wrapped up soon after that, and we had to go our separate ways. The moment I drove off, I instantly felt shame and guilt. The kind of feeling you get when you know you’ve done something wrong. Then it hit me. I just downplayed all the blessings in my life.

Why do we do this? We hear it so often in everyday conversations. We find fault in the gifts that God has given us.

You May Also Like:  Stop Being a Butthole Wife

It happens all the time. The business owner who says, “I’m having a good year…but it’ll hurt me during tax time.” 

The parent of a healthy child-athlete who says, “We have to go to another weekend tournament and it’s getting exhausting to travel.”

The owner of a beautiful acreage who states, “We love it here, but it’s really a hassle to take care of the property.”

Think of it like this: as a parent, when you give your child a present and he or she doesn’t show enthusiasm, how does that make you feel? Likely, you feel disappointment and maybe even anger because your child wasn’t more grateful.

I imagine that’s probably how God feels when we complain about the responsibilities and the stress that we sometimes have to endure when we receive God’s blessings.

Why does it seem easier – and more socially acceptable – to complain about the people, the places, and the occurrences of our lives? How much different would life feel if we focused more on the positive outcomes we experience? What if we shared more joy in our small talk with friends and neighbors?

I continued to drive home that day and I asked God for forgiveness. I said a prayer of gratitude for the gifts in my life. I pledged to honor Him in my future conversations. If I could go back and redo the conversation with my friend that day, here’s what I would say:

“My wife and I are thrilled for the birth of a new baby – our first son. I’m excited to share the experience with my two older daughters. Our house will be filled with even more love and happiness. Yes, life will change – and there will be challenges, but I trust that God will guide us through each one. Each day will be a gift and I look forward to the experiences that lay ahead.”

You are strategically placed where you’re supposed to be. Recognize the goodness in your everyday life, and give thanks. Through it all, openly praise God. Give it a try in your daily discussions with friends and acquaintances. You might be surprised how much positivity and love will spread as a result.

You May Also Like: Sex And Raising Babies: 7 Ways To Bring Back Intimacy

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Check out our new Keepsake Companion Journal that pairs with our So God Made a Mother book!

Order Now
So God Made a Mother's Story Keepsake Journal

Kyle Means

Kyle Means is the Director of Marketing for the University of Nebraska at Kearney. He enjoyed a fulfilling career in Sports & Entertainment prior to his work in higher education. Past stops include HuskerVision, Houston Rockets/Toyota Center, and the Tri-City Storm/Viaero Event Center. Kyle left the sports biz in 2014 to pursue a career more focused on marketing where he can use a combination of strategic and creative skills. Plus, he now has a few more nights and weekends to spend with his awesome family including his wife (HerViewFromHome founder) Leslie Means, their two daughters Ella and Grace and son, Keithan.  Kyle still enjoys watching and playing a variety of sports. The competitive, yet unifying, nature of sports is a strangely beautiful concept that he loves. When he’s not enhancing the brand at UNK, spending time with family or watching/playing sports, Kyle can usually be found volunteering at First Lutheran Church where likes to display a strong faith and give back to the community.

God Redeemed the Broken Parts of My Infertility Story

In: Faith, Grief, Loss, Motherhood
Two young children walking on a path near a pond, color photo

It was a Wednesday morning when I sat around a table with a group of mamas I had just recently met. My youngest daughter slept her morning nap in a carrier across my chest. Those of us in the group who held floppy babies swayed back and forth. The others had children in childcare or enrolled in preschool down the road. We were there to chat, learn, grow, and laugh. We were all mamas. But we were not all the same. I didn’t know one of the mom’s names, but I knew I wanted to get to know her because she...

Keep Reading

God Has You

In: Faith, Motherhood
Woman hugging herself while looking to the side

Holding tight to the cold, sterile rail of the narrow, rollaway ER bed, I hovered helplessly over my oldest daughter. My anxious eyes bounced from her now steadying breaths to the varying lines and tones of the monitor overhead. Audible reminders of her life that may have just been spared. For 14 years, we’d been told anaphylaxis was possible if she ingested peanuts. But it wasn’t until this recent late autumn evening we would experience the fear and frenzy of our apparent new reality. My frantic heart hadn’t stopped racing from the very moment she struggled to catch a breath....

Keep Reading

My Husband Having a Stroke at 30 Wasn’t in Our Plans

In: Faith, Living
Husband and wife, selfie, color photo

“‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’” (Jeremiah 29:11, NIV) This verse in the book of Jeremiah has long been a favorite of mine. In fact, it’s felt relevant across many life events. Its simple, yet powerful reminder has been a place of solace, perhaps even a way to maintain equilibrium when I’ve felt my world spinning a bit out of control. In this season of starting fresh and new year intentions, I find great comfort in knowing...

Keep Reading

She Left Him on Valentine’s Day

In: Faith, Marriage
Husband kissing wife on cheek, color photo

“Can you believe that?” Those were the dreaded knife-cutting whispers I heard from across the table. I sunk deeper into my chair. My hopes fell as everyone would forever remember that I had left my fiancée on Valentine’s Day. Maybe one day it would just dissipate like the dream wedding I had planned or the canceled plane tickets for the Hawaiian honeymoon. Some bridesmaids and guests had already booked plane tickets. It was my own nightmare that kept replaying in my head over and over again. I had messed up. Big time. To be honest, if it made any difference,...

Keep Reading

God was In the Room for Our Daughter’s Open Heart Surgery

In: Faith, Motherhood
Child's hand with IV

I’ve had a strong faith for as long as I can remember, but I always felt bad that I never had a “testimony.” I had never gone through something that made me sit back and say, “Wow, God is real, He is here.” I have always felt it to my core, but no moment had ever stopped me dead in my tracks to where there was no denying that it was God. And then, that moment happened to me on December 5. After five months of fervently praying for a miracle for our daughter, the day came for her heart...

Keep Reading

A Benediction for the Worn Out Mother

In: Faith, Motherhood
Woman leaning against kitchen counter, black-and-white photo

Blessed are you, Father, for bestowing upon me the honor of motherhood. For allowing me to experience the deep joy of bringing forth life—a joy I often take for granted and instead choose to begrudge. My children’s cries and demands have worn me down. I do not recognize myself. I selfishly long for the old me. My thoughts are an intangible mess of never-ending tasks, self-criticism, and comparison to those around me. RELATED: God Sees You, Weary Mama But Your word says you are near to the broken-hearted and downtrodden. You do not forget the cause of the tired and the...

Keep Reading

God Doesn’t Forget You When You’re Lost and Unsure

In: Faith, Living
Woman looking into camera, color photo

I’ve been wandering around feeling lost for over a year. Wondering where I’m going, what I’m supposed to be doing. Nothing seems to make sense. I felt purposeless. I felt stuck. I questioned everything: my faith, my marriage, my career—if it could be questioned, I doubted it. And I was completely clueless how to fix the funk. For over a year, I’ve been in the wilderness. I’ve wanted to find my way, but every path seemed like another dead end. The wilderness. I’ve been residing there. Not feeling fed. Not feeling heard. Not feeling seen. Struggling to find a purpose....

Keep Reading

And Then, the Darkness Lifts

In: Faith, Motherhood
Mother with baby smiling

Today when I woke, it had lifted, like sunshine peeking after rain. And as my toddler clicked on the lamp beside my bed to see her mama, I saw me too. I got out of bed and I walked down the hall. And the coffee pot sat there waiting for me, as always, like my husband at the kitchen table with his books. He smiled at me, and I think he could tell as I took my medicine, took down a mug, and poured my coffee. I opened the secretary desk and pulled out the chair and my Bible, like...

Keep Reading

Joy in This Stillness

In: Faith, Motherhood
Mother holding sleeping toddler, color photo

I woke up suddenly in a sweat while it was still dark. Except for the humming of the oxygen machine, the house was silent. For a moment, I thought I might have time to enjoy a cup of coffee before my son woke up. However, a glance at my daughter’s crib told me that feeding my caffeine addiction would have to wait. My daughter has a terminal brain disorder called Lissencephaly, a side effect of which is uncontrolled epilepsy. Many mornings, a subconscious recognition that she is having episodes of repeated seizures rouses me from my sleep. Throwing on a...

Keep Reading

Sometimes All We Can Do Is Say How Hard Motherhood Is

In: Faith, Motherhood
Tired mom with baby in foreground

I have been sitting in the peace and quiet of the office to do some long overdue Bible study for all of five minutes when the baby wakes up. With a heavy sigh that is becoming all too common, I go to the bedroom to pick up my fussy, probably getting sick, 8-month-old daughter who has been asleep for approximately 15 minutes. I bring her to the office and put her on the floor with some new books and toys. Sitting back down in front of my own new book of Bible maps and charts, I begin reading once again....

Keep Reading