We have been so excited and busy with getting Day & Night Worship radio show going, that we have forgotten about our own little blog on here! So, I decided to start a little series about defining worship. It's easy to feel like being a "worshiper" is just singing and/or playing an instrument to the Lord. However, I think we all know it's much more than that. It's how we live our everyday lives. I have always known that in my head, but I'm starting to understand it deeper in my heart through becoming a mother.
We started this site long before I was pregnant and we were worship leaders even longer before that. I knew the Lord called me to be a worship leader when I was 15. It made me come alive and I felt whole when I did it. I took an unfortunate detour for a few years, but I came back around and haven't stopped since, thank God. When Toby and I got married, it was like both of our gifts took flight and just went even higher because of one another. There was a new unity and confidence and it was amazing. In addition to this budding ministry, I was in school finishing my degree in English (which I loved), working part time and co-leading worship and youth with my husband. It was a lot and at times too much, but my point is, I was perpetually busy!
When I got pregnant, I was still active: I finished school and then started substitute teaching and helping out at the book club that Toby cosponsors at the school he works at. Then, we had our little Yosi. What a sweet boy! He makes me immeasurably happy and I can't imagine not being the one to take care of him each day...and yet I also missed the way my life was before him. I missed staying up late watching movies (sans baby monitor) and sleeping in on weekends and just doing my own thing.
What? You don't love being a stay at home mom???
Not all the time, no! I think if many stay at home parents are honest with themselves, there are times when you are like, "ok that was fun...I'll go back to work now!" For me, there were overwhelming moments of dissatisfaction for what I was doing and the feeling of a huge loss of self...like every talent and interest I had pre-baby would never come to pass. It sounds dramatic, but it was very real, and if we can't be real about life then what are we even doing? So yes, I was pretty depressed and wondering if i would have to wait a long time to find myself again. Simply put: I lost my mojo.
Thankfully, I have an amazingly supportive and loving husband who always tries to encourage me and let me have time to myself by going off to our local coffee shop for hours. It was much needed and I was so thankful, but it wasn't curing my ills. I was still down and still felt useless. I truly do know that being a parent is one of the greatest callings and responsibilities in the world, but I just couldn't see it at the moment. Even playing the piano was depressing because I couldn't lose myself in worship like I once did....because there was a baby that needed tending.
Then, of course, God came in.
I was scheduled to do an interview with Bethany Rosenfeld who has 8 kiddos herself. I was super excited to hear about the goings-on in Israel and how they were doing as a family. I expected to hear all of that and was thrilled. What I didn't expect was to be completely uplifted and encouraged in my own calling. She talked about feeling the same shadow after becoming a mom for the first time and and she had to pray for God to change her heart. He did, and 7 more kids later, she is more active in ministry and her own calling than ever (you can read the fully post about her here.) I needed to hear that life not only continued as it was, but that it would blossom into MORE opportunity and more chances to use the gifts God has blessed me with. Life and life abundantly! It was the answer to the sad question I had been asking myself. One conversation, and God yanked me out of the pit I kept digging and placed me back on the road He has been leading me on.
What I'm trying to say is, I realized that motherhood isn't the act of replacing my callings with another, it's adding to them. Yes, things get shifted around and put in different places so to speak, but anyone who has ever played Tetris knows that one shape creates a space for another. Motherhood is the new shape and it fits perfectly, the way it should. My son loves worship music (especially music in Hebrew). He giggles and wiggles when I sing or when music is on. Yes, he's 4 1/2 months old, but his little heart is already creating a space for worship...and praise God, I get to help facilitate that. Now, my calling is not only to lead worship and help people come into the atmosphere of praise, but it is to teach my son that as well. In every way! Guys, this parent thing isn't easy but it is GOOD and it is beautiful. Not every day is a win, but God is faithful and he renews all things. Being a mother is just one way that I am able to worship God. I strive to be the mother I am meant to be and pray that my example and nurturing is what will help my son become the man of God he is meant to be, and that, friends, is no bad thing.