|The day my life changed|
3 and ½ months ago my life changed! I became the mother to the most precious little boy K (His first name initial). Although, I had been praying to be a wife and mother for quite some time, nothing could have prepared me for the major changes that I was about to go through. Before getting married and having a baby, I served at my church on the ministerial staff for 8 years. I did it all. If anyone needed me to cover for them in pulpit, I was there. If the pastor needed me to be at three services a day, I was there! If anyone needed me to spend my entire Sunday at the nursing home, I was your woman. My life functioned around church. However, once K came, all my priorities shifted! I was no longer Rev. Lauren, but Rev. Mommy. After God and my husband, K was my top priority.
I could already feel my priorities change before K was born. Three months before my due date, I went on “maternity leave” from serving at my church. I didn’t have the energy to make those early morning services and after a fainting spell at Burlington Coat Factory, I didn’t want to risk passing out during a service and sending everyone into a panic. The withdrawal came immediately. I missed being a part of the services. I missed chiming in on the next big day at church. I was no longer in the loop. Most of my worship experiences consisted of sitting in front of the computer and watching them live via the Internet. After 8 years, this is what it came down to—virtual worship.
The depression hit after the baby came. I couldn’t leave the house for 2 months (Yes, I’m old fashioned) and it was just me and K—all day, every day. My husband started a new job a week after K was born, so he was gone most of the day. My stepmother stayed with me for the first 2 weeks, but after she left, it was just me…and a baby. During that time, I began to wrestle with my calling. How could I minister to the masses when I didn’t even have time to brush my teeth or take a shower? How could I minister to the homeless on the streets of D.C. when I didn’t even want to take my new baby to the grocery store? How could I spend quiet time in the Word and study when I had a baby attached to me 24/7 by the teat? I didn’t have any more down time and I couldn’t imagine how a baby fit into the ministry equation.
It was then that the Lord began to open my heart and speak to me about this new divine calling that He blessed me with—motherhood. What made serving in the pulpit more divine than nursing my child to sleep? What made preaching the Word more divine than living the Word through my interactions with my husband and child? The Lord reminded me of Proverbs 31:28 (NIV), “Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her” for the work she does for her family. The Holy Spirit brought to my remembrance that we are not even worthy to serve unless we manage our families well (1 Timothy 3). The Lord also reminded me of Malachi 2:15. He brought my husband and me together to raise a godly seed. God added motherhood as new component of my calling, and I welcomed it with open arms!
So today, my days are filled with breastfeeding, burping and poo poo, but they are no less divine than the days I spent in seminary or the days I spent ministering outside of the home. I know that I will eventually get back out there and minister to the least of these, but until then, it’s Rev. Mommy and I’m OK with that!