Tis the season for carpool around these parts. Can you relate?
I run my taxivan to and from school several times a day picking up children who call me mom. In reality, there should be a tip jar on my dash and they ought to call me Mac, the cab driver. But I digress.
On my daily carpool trips I can’t help but notice a woman who takes regular walks along my route. She is always reading a book on her walk which I find a little funny. She also walks her dog–the ultimate multi-tasker–not moving quickly but rather plodding calmly down a busy country road. As I pass her frequently in my van, I find myself curious about her life. I believe she lives in the cute little bungalow I often admire–the house with just the one car in the garage and the quaint flower beds.
I find my mind drifting into that charming house as I drive by: thinking of how clean and heavenly it must be. No finger smudges on every wall. No basketball bouncing through the kitchen. No laundry peppered through every bedroom–again. No strife or arguing. Simple. Quiet. Clean. Maintained. So very different from the daily grind of raising a family.
I am want to dream of the greener grass which encircles the whitewashed bungalow where a little older woman lives with enough leisure time to saunter along the road with a book in hand and a lapdog on a leash. What’s for dinner?…I genuinely want to ask her? A peanut butter and jelly sandwich for one if you wish? A gourmet salad you picked up on your way home? Ice cream?
Her grass–her life, just looks greener to me. Do you find yourself thinking this way ever? That someone else’s life is sweeter, easier, more pleasant? I think if we are honest, we can all say yes to some degree. But I think if we’re honest, we also know that cannot be the case.
I’ve no doubt, made this woman’s life easier in my mind than it actually is. If I really got to know this woman, I would find she has her own struggles. Perhaps her garage has one car because her husband passed. Perhaps her demanding job requires so much of her that her walk is the only time she has to enjoy. Perhaps she has a leaky roof on the backside of that white bungalow. Though I would wish her a life as pleasant as I imagine it, I know that in this fallen world, that is probably not true.
Instead of idealizing another person’s lot, God draws my mind back to my own plot of grass (which needs mowed), my own work, and my own blessed family. Wishing for something easier or more simplified “over yonder” would surely vanish like a mirage upon arrival anyways. Wanting to be in an easier season does not help today.
So what is a taxivan drivin’ woman to do? What are you to do?
For moms, I could mention many helps like being careful with your calendar commitments and persistently maintaining your home, or executing meal planning and chore delegation. But I am not going to go there today. Today it is just a recognition for all women alike: because so many of these battles are won or lost in the mind.
Today is a recognition that no matter how you cut it, we all have work to do and we all have trials. And all of it is a gift! It is both the work and challenges ordained by God and it is suited for our season and our life…for us. Take those wayward thoughts captive and purpose to love exactly what the Lord has given.
It is good for a man to bear the yoke while he is young. Lamentations 3:27
Whether you happen to lead a quiet or hoppin’ life, whether you have riches or meager means, whether you are in excellent or poor health, may we each seek to live all unto the glory of the Lord. And if we know Christ, we can say with the Psalmist:
The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance. Psalm 16:6
May we do the work of today in the season of this day and love the life the Lord has given us. No matter where the boundary lines have fallen–if we are walking in obedience–they are in pleasant places, because he is a good Father. Won’t you thank Him for that today?
In Christ’s love, erika