As I walked out the door, I frantically made a mental check of the amount of money in my wallet to be sure I would be able to buy a coffee. A sense of dread clouded my thoughts and I reminded myself,

“I cannot feel the way I did yesterday.”

Can. Not.

Coffee seems like the very first step in securing my position in my all-out war against yesterday’s enemy, so I soothe myself with the thought that I will have caffeine in my veins soon.

Yesterday, I did not feel depressed. I didn’t feel bitter or angry.

No, I faced the ultimate state of defeat for any woman: I was tired.

T-i-r-e-d. Like couldn’t hold my eyes open. Like couldn’t even stand up to do dishes.

I know . . . to be tired is to be human. That’s the problem. It might have been allergies or lack of sleep, but no matter the cause, my tiredness was just an ugly reminder that I can’t do it all. No matter how hard I work or strive or pretend, I am a limited human being with limited capacity.

In short, I am not God.

I know this, intellectually. But the driving forces inside me say “BE MORE. DO MORE. ACCOMPLISH MORE. WORK HARDER. Are you even working at all?! What have you done all day? Why are you tired? What is wrong with you?”

I was so relieved when my daughter had a two-hour delay this morning. As I rolled over to change my alarm to a later time, I already had a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach. Think of the things you could get done in that time! The laundry, the dishes, the bedrooms, Bible reading. So instead of being thankful for the extra sleep, I laid my head back down in shame and regret.

RELATED: This is Why Moms Are So Exhausted 

I’m addicted to efficiency. In fact, I kind of don’t want to be sitting here writing this right now.

It feels wasteful. It feels like there are literally 10,000 other tasks more important than sitting at my husband’s laptop, surrounded by toys, dirty dishes, and laundry piles waiting for my attention.

In desperation, I cry out to God.

How am I supposed to change the world AND wash the dishes?

How could I raise good kids AND keep their laundry folded?

How on earth am I supposed to live out my calling from You outside these walls AND turn my home into the sanctuary You’ve given me the vision for?

And, most painfully, Why does it seem so easy for other women? What am I missing?

I claim to be following gentle Jesus, meek and mild, but then live as if the Jesus I mold myself after is Tony Robbins or some other high-energy, loudspeaker, non-stop movement of a human being.

And I feel not enough.

Not charismatic enough.

Not organized enough.

Not kind enough, friendly enough, likable enough.

Not bold enough.

Not doing enough for God.

Not put-together enough.

But what if the rest Jesus promised in Matthew 11:28 is for me, not just the pretend woman in my head who already has all her housework done?

What if the promise of an abundant life isn’t loopholed in a contract that says my to-do list has to be done first?

What if God still loves His daughters, even if their “room” isn’t clean?

Psalm 116 says:  “Now I can say to myself and to all, ‘Relax and rest, be confident and serene, for the Lord rewards fully those who simply trust in him.”

Hear that?! We can say to ourselves “Relax. Rest. Be confident and serene. Simply trust Him.”  

Psalm 116 says: “So now, what can I ever give back to God to repay him for the blessings he’s poured out on me? I will lift up His cup of salvation and praise Him extravagantly for all that he’s done for me.”

So that’s all that’s on my agenda for today. Lifting up His cup of salvation and praising Him extravagantly for all He’s done for me.

Lord, I lift all these women up to You. There are so many demands, so many things pulling for our attention. Some of them matter and some of them don’t. Please help us know the difference!

Remind us that nothing disqualifies us from walking with You except for sin, and You say that if we turn and confess every unrighteousness You are faithful and just to forgive.

All of this we ask in the beautiful name of Jesus. Amen!

This post originally appeared on the author’s blog

You may also like:

God Sees You, Weary Mama

This is Why Moms Are So Exhausted

A Mother’s Mind Never Rests, Because We Carry The Mental Load

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

Morgan Massey

A former teen mom & recovering perfectionist, Morgan writes to give unexpected hope to other women drowning in anxiety, depression, motherhood, or  She lives in Indiana with her family.  

So God Made a Sunday School Teacher

In: Faith, Living
Woman sitting at table surrounded by kids in Sunday school class, color photo

God looked around at all He had created, and He knew He would need someone to teach His children. So God made a Sunday school teacher. God knew He needed someone with a heart and desire to teach children God’s word. God knew the children would act up and made Sunday school teachers with patience and grace to guide them when they step out of line in class. He also made Sunday school teachers with a touch of discretion to know when the stories of a child may be real or imagined. God knew this person would need to be...

Keep Reading

But God, I Can’t Forgive That

In: Faith, Marriage
Woman holding arms and walking by water

Surrender is scary. Giving in feels like defeat. Even when I know it’s the right thing, yielding everything to God is scary. It also feels impossible. The weight of all I’m thinking and feeling is just so dang big and ugly. Do you know what I mean? Sometimes I cling so tightly to my fear I don’t even recognize it for what it is. Bondage. Oppression. Lack of trust. Oh, and then there’s that other thing—pride. Pride keeps me from seeing straight, and it twists all of my perceptions. It makes asking for help so difficult that I forget that...

Keep Reading

Dear Dad, I Pray for Our Healing

In: Faith, Grief, Grown Children
Back shot of woman on bench alone

You are on my mind today. But that’s not unusual. It’s crazy how after 13 years, it doesn’t feel that long since I last saw you. It’s also crazy that I spend far less time thinking about that final day and how awful it was and spend the majority of the time replaying the good memories from all the years before it. But even in the comfort of remembering, I know I made the right decision. Even now, 13 years later, the mix of happy times with the most confusing and painful moments leaves me grasping for answers I have...

Keep Reading

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