As Catholic moms, we strive to raise faith-filled children, all while trying to grow closer to God ourselves. But life gets busy, and with that busyness, our best intentions can go astray.
At that statement, his face fell, and he went away sad, for he had many possessions (Mark 10:22).
In Mark 10, when the rich man asks Jesus what he needs to do to inherit eternal life, Jesus looks at him, loves him, and tells him to sell what he owns and give the money to the poor. Although the rich man follows every commandment, he just can't follow this directive. His wealth means too much to him. He walks away sad.
Most of us aren't wealthy. So we're not prone to get into the same pickle the rich mad did. Yet, I believe this story still applies to us -- not in terms of wealth, but, believe it or not, in terms of time.
Of course, motherhood fills our time to the brim with childcare, work, chores, carpooling, etc. In the midst of this chaos, we can't begin to fathom how we could ever be wealthy in time.
No matter what way we look at our lives, we can't see how we could carve out quiet time to spend with God. More ludicrous is the idea that, in the midst of our over-scheduled lives, there's space enough to volunteer and serve others.
What we fail to recognize is: We create the majority of the commitments in our lives. As hard as it is to admit, we're the ones who choose to sign our kids up for multiple activities. We're the ones who control how much time we spend on technology and social media. We may not use self-discipline with either, but even that is a choice.
If we stepped back and looked at our lives from the perspective of eternal life, would we see that everything on our calendar aligns with our goal of spending eternity with God? If Jesus turned to us and said we needed to give up a portion of our time, would we walk away sad, unwilling to sacrifice, like the rich man did? Clearly, we hope not.
The first step toward this end is to take an honest look at our lives. If and when we do, I'm sure we'd see a mixture of necessary tasks and not-so-necessary ones. The commitments that align with His will for us are the ones we should hold onto. The ones that don't are a wonderful place to begin pruning away, making room for what we know God wants us to do.
Copyright 2019 Claire McGarry
About the Author
Claire McGarry is the author of the Lenten devotional "With Our Savior," published by Creative Communications for the Family/Bayard, Inc. and Grace in Tension: Discover Peace with Martha and Mary, to be published by Our Sunday Visitor in the fall of 2021. Her freelance work has appeared in various Chicken Soup for the Soul books, Focus on the Family magazine, Catechist magazine, These Days devotional, and Keys for Kids devotional. The founder of MOSAIC of Faith, a ministry with several different programs for mothers and children, she blogs at Shifting My Perspective.