The last week in January is always a tender week for my heart. It doesn’t matter how old I grow … it doesn’t matter where I am living geographically … and it doesn’t matter what activities currently occupy the scope of my days… the last week in January will always hold rich memories and a sweetness that envelopes every part of my being.
You see … on January 29, 1981, I became a mom for the very first time. Matthew Craig McLeod was born over a week late, but as I looked into his little blue eyes so fresh from heaven, I knew that I had discovered the purpose for which I had been born.
I was born to be a mom.
I had been created to raise up a generation of world-changing kids.
And then … on January 27, 1983, Christopher Burton McLeod was born. His due date was January 4 and at over three weeks late, he weighed a whopping 9 pounds and 11 ounces! (And may I just say lovingly … he has never been on time for anything at all!)
Two little boys … almost exactly two years apart to the day.
Now do you understand why the last week in January always brings back memories of expectation and of destiny fulfilled? Can you imagine why the last days of this month stir up the remembrance of long awaited hope and the pronouncement of God’s promises in my life?
The last week in January will always remind me of birthday parties … and Legos scattered across the family room floor … of basketball games in a sweaty gym … and of choir concerts and home runs.
I fondly recall each one of Matt’s and Christopher’s friends who have marched through my front door over the years … of all of the games of Monopoly and Clue that we have played around the kitchen table … of all of the books that we have read together … and all of the meals that I have prepared.
The final days of January every single calendar year never cease to cause this mama’s heart to remember.
To ache and to remember.
I had three more incredible and very wanted children as the years passed by but it is the last week in January that was my initiation into motherhood.
It was the final few days of the first month of the year that laid out the red carpet into God’s destiny for my life.
While other women of my generation were climbing the corporate ladder and buying BMW’s, I was wiping noses and making grilled cheese sandwiches.
While other women were writing best-selling books and being named to the Supreme Court, I was settling arguments in my own home and writing the Word of God upon the hearts of my children.
While other women were flying into space and become news anchors on the network news, I was a home school mom who was teaching her children to reach for the stars.
And you know what? The last week in January seals it for me every year … I am a woman with no regrets.
I don’t regret the fact that I invested the 30 most productive years of my life into raising a brood of children who would make hell shake and cause heaven to break forth into raucous applause.
I don’t regret the fact that our retirement savings are low … that we don’t own a home at the beach … and that I will probably never make it to Hawaii. I firmly believe that the treasure and the value of mothering is not something that can be measured by earth’s resources.
Now … if you have chosen differently than I have … it’s okay. We are all different women with unique gifts and individual purposes from heaven. The important tenet is that, as a woman, you determine to live in a place of God’s purpose for your life. If mothering is part of the story of your life, then mother to the very best of your ability; make every moment count when your children are living under your roof.
Hear God’s voice and instructions for your strategic and irreplaceable life and then live that life well. Live it very well!
I read a blog recently in which a young mother was complaining (she was whining, actually) about women my age who say, “Enjoy every minute of these years! They fly by!”
This young mom didn’t want to hear about the rapid passing of the diaper years … and the peanut butter and jelly days … and the sleepless nights. She was so immersed in these years and so frustrated by them that she wasn’t interested in listening to an older woman’s perspective.
And you know what? That’s okay because someday she will be a mom who looks back and realizes what I know to be true, “Motherhood is when the days never end and the years fly by.”
It is indeed true … whether she wants to hear it or not.
During these last few days of January, let me encourage you that whatever you have been appointed to do this side of heaven … do it well! Do it with gusto! Do it with no regrets!
Live your life at full throttle so that when the years pass by … and they will … you will have the ability to look back at the history of your life with a profound joy. I shudder for those who look back with an agonizing apology for what might have been … what could have been … what should have been.
Never be afraid to listen to those who have walked the pathway in front of you … learn from their wisdom and their insight. The lessons learned along the pathway of experience are among the most important lessons that one will ever learn.
Whatever your January looks like … I am praying for you today. I pray that you will live a life of uncommon destiny and of miraculous purpose! I pray that this month, and every month of the calendar year, you will journey along God’s chosen path for your life with a spring in your step and with joy in your heart!
“Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom you serve.” – Colossians 3:23 & 24