Better Off Dead: A Story of Dying to Self in Motherhood
I originally published this article on TheBetterMom.com in 2011.
I’ll be a better mom when I’m dead. Dying to self, my desires, and my perfect plans are the only way that I can ultimately rise to a new life in Christ and therefore be a better mother. They pull it out of me you know. These five kiddos reach way deep into my heart and pull me toward the finish line. Sometimes I’m kicking and screaming. I want to finish my race, but really, do I have to die daily—everyday? This was not my plan. I went to college for technology and earned a degree before I was 20. I was going to have my one child, who I would radically stay home with until school started, but then I was returning to work. Within those early years of being home with him, God opened our hearts to homeschooling.
It wasn’t a complete death because I struggled for several years over casting down my desire for a career and a title. I was programmed that I needed to reach those benchmarks to be successful truly. I even went back to school to be a Nurse when our babies were just 3-years-old and 10-weeks-old. I trudged through 2 more years of night classes. But found upon graduation that to have the medical opportunities I craved I would forever need more classes, added initials, more time sponging away from my babies. I surrendered my dream for a medical career—less of who I was, more of who I was becoming.
There are pieces of me left everywhere.
During another season we stepped out into foster care, only to find the red tape and misinformation was more than our family could bear. I told God so many children who need a home…across the ocean or in the next town. Only to be reminded we must wait on His perfect timing–hunker down for the long wait.
“31[I assure you] by the pride which I have in you in [your [a]fellowship and union with] Christ Jesus our Lord, that I die daily [I face death every day and die to self].”1 Corinthians 15:31 Amplified Bible (AMP)
I’m not sure at this point what I’ll have to die to next. I know I will infinitely need less of me and more of Him. Paul says that “I die daily.” I find that true. This slow death that I’m living, covered in babies, dripping in love, books everywhere, trash can overflowing, is so much better than any life that I had planned for myself. This death makes me a better mom.
What have you had to die too as a mom? In what ways do you find yourself dying to self?