My little helper 💙 This morning I felt I failed as a mother... there was far too much shouting and nagging and frustrated groans on my part... the school run always feels like a disruption, no matter how prepared we are. I sent one teary little girl into school and came home feeling dreadful. Teaching and training these little ones is a tough gig... and it's the biggest means of sanctification in my life right now. Because as they show their selfishness, mine is revealed too... and seeing your two-year-old angrily shouting words at his sister that you have just uttered yourself is a painful glimpse in the mirror. So thankful for the cross. So thankful for grace. So thankful for new mercies every morning. Every. Single. Day.
I posted this on my Instagram account yesterday. Within moments the comments started rolling in. Clearly I'd hit a nerve. After a rough start to my morning, and an all too vivid reflection of my parenting, I wasn't the only one feeling like a failure as a mother sometimes.
Instagram is a funny old world - a world of pretty pictures and perfect squares. It's often criticized for being an unreal representation of life. And in many ways it is - but isn't that the beauty of it? After all, who wants to look at a grid full of someone else's washing up, ironing pile, or general clutter? We all have it, we know we do... and yet instagram is this wonderful little world where we all pretend it doesn't exist. It is our best life on show. And that's inspiring and creative and beautiful.
But it's not reality.
And when you have a bad morning, or a rough start... its good to put it out there. Because some people look at your pretty feed and think your life is flawless... when we all know full well its not.
I know it can appear sorted, and idyllic and "the grass is always greener" but the reality is family life is family life... there is bickering and selfishness, harsh words and frustration. Of course, we try to train and teach our children, and in the training and the teaching comes sanctification for ourselves (we too demonstrate allllllll the traits above!) and we rejoice in growth and kindness... and the good moments are the ones we want to record, to remember in thankfulness... but the tough moments are also worth documenting, because they are where God will do his work in our own hearts.
So if you find yourself on Instagram, or Facebook, or any form of social media and wondering why everyone else's life is so idyllic and yours feels such a mess... just remember... we're all in the same boat, recording the good stuff, learning through the bad, and so relieved when someone has the guts to be vulnerable.
And maybe we'll all keep keeping it real together.