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I love the Fall season, don’t you? The color of blushing leaves, the caress of cool, crisp winds, the warm, sweet taste and smell of pumpkin spice lattes, the fun family get-togethers for Thanksgiving and Christmas, etc., I could go on and on.
Thinking about Fall brings me back to one particular October evening. It was the week before Halloween, and I could hear my then three-year-old son, Caleb, playing in the living room of our small apartment. He was dressed in a Buzz Lightyear costume, one he would wear again later in the week for his very first “trick or treating” adventure.
I could hear him excitedly run around the room, making “Zoom!” and “Bee-eep! Bee-eep!” sound effects. “To ‘imfimity’ and beyond!” he shouted.
I walked into the room to watch his antics. He played some more and then asked me after a while, “What are you wearing for Halloween, Mommy?”
I froze in thought. I hadn’t really planned on dressing up that year. My mind raced for last-minute costume ideas, and then I told him, “One minute— I’ll be right back.”
I rushed around the apartment looking for inspiration. After a few minutes of searching, I ended up grabbing one of Caleb’s red superhero eye masks, some bright purple cleaning gloves (you know, the disposable kind we use to scrub toilets), and I draped a toddler-sized bed sheet around my neck and shoulders.
I paraded into the living room, decked out in my new, makeshift wardrobe, and exclaimed, “Ta-da!”
Caleb looked up at me with a perplexed and bewildered look on his face, his little nose scrunched up in confusion.
“What are you?” he asked.
“I’m SUPER MOM!” I proudly proclaimed.
Not long after I uttered those words, I had my own look of perplexity and bewilderment, only I was looking inward at myself.
Am I a Super Mom? Am I a good enough mom for my son?
And then it hit me… the anxiety. The doubts. The feeling of failure.
We parents place a lot of guilt and pressure on ourselves. We always wonder if we’re playing with our children enough, if we’re providing enough healthy meal choices for them, if we’re teaching and preparing them enough, if we’re positively leading them by example, etc.
In addition to being a parent, we also carry other “hats” and roles with which we pressure ourselves. We’re spouses and homemakers. We’re employees, business leaders, church members, and community volunteers. We carry a lot of responsibilities, and sometimes it becomes exhausting, especially when we take on the world’s expectations and demands instead of God’s grace.
We get wrapped up in all the tiny details and society’s pressures of trying to be super moms and dads or super [fill in the blank] that we sometimes forget to enjoy the sweet, precious moments of our day-to-day interactions with our kids and loved ones.
We focus so much on “perfecting” that we often miss out on “connecting.”
Not only that, but we also often burden ourselves with expectations that are unnecessary and unrealistic to begin with. And then we blame ourselves, piling on the guilt and shame, when we don’t meet them.
But here’s the thing… you don’t have to strive for perfection.
God’s perfection is enough. More than enough! He created us beautifully and wonderfully, and He wants us to accept ourselves and love ourselves as we are, flaws and all.
Sure, there’s always room for our own self-improvement. God wants us to become more and more like Him– like His Son, Jesus. But He also doesn’t want us to be filled with anxiety and guilt for not being perfect. That’s where His grace comes in.
God is after our hearts– not our perfection. He wants a deep, genuine relationship with us. And the more we draw near to Him, the more He perfects us into His image. He is the one who perfects us– it is not of our own doing or efforts.
Rest in His grace today. If doubt, guilt, and anxiety are your kryptonite, fling them far, far away. Soak in the strength of the sun— and the Son. “Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles.” (Isaiah 40:31, NIV)
God can help you soar through your journey of parenthood and all the other roles and “hoods” of your life. He can give you wisdom, peace, perseverance, and above all, JOY. There is no other greater, more perfect “super power” than having God in your corner!
So, to all the parents, spouses, and caregivers out there, go ahead and take off your burdensome masks. God’s got all the super power you’ll ever need, and His perfect power is to infinity and beyond!
Your friend and sister in Christ,
“But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength…” I rely on this verse every. single. day. It’s so true – we moms are so hard in judging ourselves. I bet Super Mom completely made Caleb’s day. I love the visual 🙂 Keep it up Amy! Beautiful story.
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Thank you Megan! I love this verse too! My mother and I would sing a duet based on this verse when I was younger. I’ve always treasured it in my heart, and it has certainly lifted me up as an adult. Thank you for your comments!
Beautifully written! And packed with truth. 😉 Pinned this to my board, as a reminder for later.
Thanks for sharing! (Grit Up link up)
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Thank you, Rachel! And thank you for the Pin! 🙂
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