The other side of the unknown

Ok, so it’s been about 6 months since my last blog post and again so much has happened. In my last post I wrote about the unknown, knowing God had called my family and me somewhere and to do something, praying and trusting, but the stars didn’t quite seem to align the way I thought they should have. God seemed silent and distant. Yet in all of that, I maintained hope that at some point God would move and show us where He wanted us to go.

For my part, I knew a portion. God had opened the door for me to serve as Director of Pastoral Care at a wonderful Catholic parish in the Baltimore area. However, doors seemed to close one after the other in regards to moving. My ideal was to live close to the church, and many places wouldn’t accept pets. I ended up commuting 2 1/2 hours each way to work, and was blessed that the church allowed flexibility to work some days from home.

This continued for a good 4 months until the Lord FINALLY opened up a door for us. We were able to find a place to live that met our needs specially and budgetarily. We moved in mid-January, still not sure how this was an answer to our prayers. It still is an hour from where I work, and all we had was hope that our prayers would be answered to find a good “family church” and that our kids would thrive in their new schools.

I am happy to say that God is faithful and has answered our prayers abundantly! Why would I have ever thought that He wouldn’t? The first church we tried is where we have stuck, and the kids love the small groups they are involved in there. They are thriving in their new school, and all the faculty have been so warm and welcoming to them. As a parent, I couldn’t be more grateful. Our dog has also been more calm since the move and hasn’t had as many behavioral issues (HUGE answer to prayer).

I know that there will be many more times in life where I will face challenges and feel God more absent than present. I know there will be more times of doubt and not trusting Him like I want to. But I am thankful that God remains patient with me in my doubt and impatience, and I am thankful that He has reminded me yet again that He is faithful and is my source of hope.


Are You There God? It’s Me, Christa.

It has been a while since my last blog post. So much has been going in in life. It’s all been really good, but has left me often with the above question. 

You see, God made it very clear to me last December that there was something else in store for me vocationally. At the same time my husband and I started yearning for simplicity in the lives of us and our family. Prayer began that God would take us to the right place and everything would line up perfectly.

It hasn’t been quite that easy. The school year has begun and we were hoping to be in our new location so the kids could start the year off fresh. That didn’t happen. An offer was put on our house and the process has been painfully slow with the bank. Slower than we had hoped. We have been searching for new housing and that process has also been much slower than we had hoped, with doors closing right and left. 

I have prayed, both begging God for what we need and desire as well as praying with expectation: that he knows our needs and will provide accordingly. I have hoped and trusted. I hear countless testimonies where folks talk about everything lining up perfectly and all at the same time. I’ve prayed that I, too, could have such a testimony. God, however, doesn’t seem to be keen to work in my life that way; at least not at this time.

It has certainly left me with asking God where he is in all of this. Some days it’s so clear and others, not so much. Throughout all of this I believe God is teaching me, and our family, to continue to trust in him. He’s got this, he’s got US, even when we don’t see his end game and the final outcome. 

I’m not gonna lie, trusting God is hard. It’s not easy living in the unknown at times, believing that he has a plan and that one day he will reveal to me exactly what that is. It’s hard knowing the first steps to take, and then having to wait longer than I want to find out the next direction. And it’s hard when you have a family on the faith journey as well. 

I think about Abraham and how God told him to go to the land he would reveal to him. That must have been so hard, knowing that he needed to begin a journey but not knowing the destination. I find strange comfort knowing that God is a sneaky God, often asking us to just trust him without us humans knowing his plans. I find comfort in knowing that others have traveled this faith journey before me, and that God proves faithful time and again, just as he has proved in our lives countless times. 

I’m looking forward to a day when I don’t lack faith and don’t feel quite so Flustered at the unknown. Until then, I will continue to pray and wait on the Lord and on his timing. 

The Importance of Rest 

Today marks the last day of a week’s vacation, and it has been fantastic! While vacation is commonplace, this marks my first vacation in 2 years, the first with baby #4, and the first where I haven’t been fielding any phone calls from work in almost 5 years. It was incredibly overdue and much needed for this Mother Flustered mom, wife, and employee.  Originally, I only planned to take 2 1/2 days off, but the recent realization that Rest is so important prompted me to make Rest for myself and my family a priority.

As moms, wives, and employees (plus volunteers and any other title we carry as women) we tend to give of ourselves unconditionally and often without limits. Our ‘yes’ supersedes our ‘no’ and we put other’s desires for us before our own needs. There are the desires from others to work long hours, always be available by phone even when spending time with family, volunteer for the PTA or some kid-related activity because there are no other parents willing/able to give of their time, the countless fundraisers and chauffeuring kids to various activities. Add on to that late nights making cupcakes or costumes, cleaning, or simply trying to squeeze in a bit of ‘me’ time or ‘couple’ time and we are spent. With a lack of time to rest and rejuvenate, we can so easily (I can so easily) become flustered, exhausted and emotional.

This last week off for me provided much needed time with my family, both immediate and extended, and it provided me with days of doing what relaxes me, such as sitting by the water, kayaking, playing with my kiddos, and reading. We didn’t do anything elaborate, just enjoyed each other’s time.

Ladies, if you haven’t (or if you don’t) take the time to rest, I implore you to do so. Take a day, take a week, and do what refreshes your body and soul. Not only will you be better off for it, but those around you will thank you as well.

Exactly what is Mother Flustered?

As a mom, I find myself flustered more often than not. There is the morning hustle where no one is on time (not even me), we are running 15 minutes late, and the kids are fighting over which kind of popsicle belongs to who. There are the drives in the car where the kids are poking each other and the baby is crying because she is exhausted and just wants to be home. There are the late nights working, and when you get home you have just enough time to make PB&J’s for dinner before running out the door to get the kids to their activities. The list could go on and on. And whether or not you are working  an out-of-the-home job or are a stay-at-home mom, we all experience these flustered moments in life. It’s simply a part of it.

This blog has been created as a place to share those flustered moments and to encourage women that it is ok to not be perfect. We all experience these moments, no matter how pristine our Facebook photos look. It’s so easy (for me) to want to only share those pretty moments in life when all the kids are cooperating, even if it is only for those 5 seconds for the picture to take.

It is my hope and prayer that mom’s can find encouragement through this and that some humor will be shared along the way. Because, if we can’t laugh at ourselves and the crazy moments in life, we will just become miserable. And that’s just no fun. So, sit back, enjoy, and live Mother Flustered!