“But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”– Joshua 24:15
I’m a marketing junkie. I live, eat and sleep marketing.
I was a serial Product Manager in the corporate financial industry. Being smart and competitive were organic to my occupation. That sense of competition in the corporate culture had always been the fuel to my flame. So inevitably, I used to work hard beyond the call of duty and even bring my worry home if things weren’t done well in the office. I was the prototypical perfectionist who will go to unhealthy lengths to avoid being average or mediocre.
That was who I am before working from home.
Since my first child was born, which is more than two years now, I still get to practice my passion as a Digital Marketing Strategist in my home office. I serve offshore clients, I work for just 20-hours in a week, start at any time of the day I wish to. But all that face-to-face interaction and competitive spirit are generally lost. And, I earn just a bit more than what I was earning back when I was working in the office.
I must admit, I still think about the what-ifs sometimes. Not that I’m bored at home. In fact, spending the rest of my waking hours managing our home and taking care of my family’s needs are just very tiring. I love my husband and my son. But I also feel that being a wife and a mom had somehow misplaced my past identity. I feel anxious when I can’t find it, no matter how hard I look.
Maybe I just miss the corporate blood rush. But sometimes, it leaves me questioning God if I am where I should be.
Perhaps the reason why I lose myself from time to time is that I’m still trying to cling to this corporate culture and to my circle. I don’t keep looking to Christ for my identity.
Unfortunately, titles and financial success are all that matters in the corporate world. Most of the time, it doesn’t matter if you’re a good wife or a mom, as long as you are a Boss Babe or in the Forbes list of the most powerful women. We care less if our a female executive’s marriage is falling apart, as long as her projects and the business are not falling apart. It doesn’t matter if the children are feeling neglected, as long as there’s a yaya to watch after them and feed them 3x a day.
Whenever I think about the things I need to take care of– myself, my husband, Kage, the second baby in my tummy, my clients’ businesses, our home, our finances, our weekly menus, our helper’s welfare among all things, I feel like I’m drowning. I am deeply shaken.
But moms would agree, we ain’t got no time for losing our bearings.
I have a looming deadline– to fix myself, my identity and my faith urgently. I have a 3-month old inside me and a two-year old boy watching the way I move and talk, the way I treat other people, the way I follow Jesus. Soon enough, there will be my two little disciples, counting on me to show them who God is and what the whole point of life is about through the lens of my own life.
My husband and I are big on our faith. Every goal planning I do with him, we always say this– that the verse our family lives up to is Joshua 24:15, “But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.” We strive hard to follow Jesus and Him alone. And if we say our identity is solely wrapped up in Him, then we should walk our talk, right?
Lately, we’ve been wondering why Kage’s been having meltdowns around his yaya and why he wasn’t showing much affection to either me or his Dad. But after taking him on a full-day date yesterday, he’s been in a genuinely stoked mood until he wakes up next day.
Turns out, he’s beginning to understand his emotions and he only needs us, not his yaya, not his toys, not his books– but his Mom and Dad and the wholeness of us.
It was a powerful wake-up call reminding me of why I was called to stay at home.
My husband and I can’t be a big shot at the same time. Like in rallying, someone needs to sit in the passenger seat to navigate, read off the pacenotes to the race driver amidst the loud car engine.
I need to make sure everybody in my home hear God’s instructions despite the world’s high level noise.
It’s time to get serious about God’s high calling in my life. He has called me to be the GM of our home and to manage the most important product I have ever handled in my marketing career– my family. And it’s about time I should embrace my true job description.
TJ’s company and his people depend on him to help their business get through troubles. And my husband needs me more than anything– to pray for him each time he goes to work and in times of challenges. He deserves to come home to a comforting kiss, a clean house and a nice home-cooked meal after a long-tiring day.
My children needs me to be subsumed from my professional pursuits into motherhood. I need to make our children feel they are more important to us than money, status and reputation. After all, from God’s point of view, the primary account of my life will be measured not based on my personal success. It will always be about the people He has asked me to take care of and how I raised them up for His glory.
I need to find my footing. Because there’s no one else who can take over my role as a wife and a mom. My role as a marketer can always be replaced. But no single soul on Earth can fill this position God has appointed me.
Christian women can’t have it all. The good news is that God gives renewed grace, mercy and strength every morning. The way to avoid the drudgery in staying at home is to bathe the tasks with prayer and catch a vision of the divine challenge in making and nurturing a home.
I know this choice doesn’t guarantee that my kids would be successful and won’t end up rebellious. No, it’s not that. God won’t crown me “Mom of the Year.” I know I’ll have failures, just like any other corporate mom.
But I always believe that no matter what goes wrong, God never wrongs when you do everything for Him.
God knows best even if it doesn’t seem so. If I’m still working 9-5, my previous perfectionist self wouldn’t be able to cope balancing being a topnotch marketer and a Proverbs 31 Woman. I would have been depressed for juggling the impossible. He knows I’m meant for a work from home set up, away from a spirit of competition and the cubicle chitchats I used to be exposed to.
After all, He knows I am most fluent in silence.
God knows that deep inside me, motherhood, loving my husband and homemaking are my passion.
Colossians 3:1-3 reminds me to trust God that I am where I should be. So when I hear the evil whisper of the enemy insisting me to cling back to my external accomplishments and circle of ambitious busyness, I’ll pause for a moment to notice it. And I’ll let God speak the true word.
I am a woman of God, a wife and a mother, first of all.
“If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.”
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