On motivation or rather, being motivated

For several years, I felt like I couldn’t move in any direction – – there have been times where I’ve thought that this was due to a lack of motivation. However, I’m realizing now, a little bit of every day, that it wasn’t a lack of motivation. What happened to me was this:

I grew up with a sick mom. Though she was the one with the physical pain and suffering, in every part of her being, the rest of us (my family) were also affected by her being sick. Let me state boldly, that I am in no way blaming her for who I am or who I have become. I barely remember my mom being healthy, actually, the only things I remember about her in a healthy state is her having pushed my baby carriage (me riding in it, of course) over the train tracks on main street (when it looked a lot older) on a walk and her taking care of (i.e. babysitting) other people’s kids before I went to elementary school and a few years after.  I do wonder if this is where my love for children comes from…from being exposed to my mom’s loving care and concern for taking care of not only her own children, but others’ children as well–but that’s another story for another time.

Over this past weekend, I found a few papers on the dining room table. When I looked at them, I realized that they were old progress reports of mine from when I was in high school, an honor roll certificate, and some standardized test scores…and my reaction was: “what happened to me?”
Looking at these sheets of paper, I was a different person back then. I worked to do my best and received the grades I got as a result – (i.e. I was not super honors, but I did receive good grades) And then….I entered college.

I’m currently studying for the GRE, you know, that test you’re supposed to take so you can go to graduate school? (something that right now, I REALLY REALLY REALLY – can I say too many ‘really(s)’ here? REALLY want to do).  Anyway, my point is this, my first year in college was kind of a bit of a shambles because of a lot of readjustments, the immediate one being that I was away from home. It was only an hour away from home, but still, away from home. I was in a new place. I had to learn how to live a college student life.

I loved the fact that I lived in one of the nice dorms, but I really had no idea how to study and how to take care of myself – – needless to say, those first year grades were not so great – – and I don’t even have the excuse of ‘partying’ to back that one up. I was definitely one of those lame-o’s who loved to stay home.  I have absolutely no idea what happened. The rest of my college career was spent trying to perk those grades up and gradually, it did get better, but my feeling is that it wasn’t good enough.

A little while ago, I had a conversation with my dad, and he reassured me that this girl that we all knew when I was in high school, wasn’t there anymore because as I went through college and my first 1.5 years on the training, my mom gradually declined in health, and then eventually very rapidly she declined even more. So, we’re thinking that this had something to do with affecting my person and causing me to outwardly show it in whatever I’ve been doing for the last few years.

What mom was going through had a deep impact on my and my father’s lives. He said that because of this, and because of how much I loved her, I was affected. This is the reason that he believes (and I sort of believe too) that I can do my best to get myself into graduate school now. And man do I really hope so!

I feel like I can move again, I can go in a direction that I never thought I actually wanted to go in. I want to further my education, so I can get a good job, so that I can help people, and if given the opportunity, preach the gospel to those I help for the church life and God’s economy. This is my view, that my graduate education for the specific job I want to do (Child Life Specialist) would be for the church life and for God’s economy.

And you know what’s motivating me? My mom. Who she was. I’m not her, and I can’t be anything like her, but I’m her daughter. She had faith in me. She believed in me. She loved me. And she would’ve wanted to see me go back to grad school after finishing the training, so I could get a job and be able to be self-sufficient to some degree, almost like she was.

So, in hopes that I don’t lose sight of placing the Lord first, always putting the Lord first and continuing to learn to do so, I’d like to honor my mom in this way.  It helps me. It drives me. She can’t see me physically, but I believe that in my spirit she is with me in many ways, even if some of my memories are dwindling, the most important thing is that I know she loved me, and I know she loved the Lord. And if you know anything about love, you know it’s powerful. Because she loved me, I loved her. Because God loved her, she loved God, and she loved others and  cared for them. In this respect, I want to be just like her. Loving others because God loves them. Caring for others because God cares for them. Loving God because He first loved us. Doing what we do in our lives because we love God and lovingly seek Him.

Signing off,
L

 

 

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Patterns, Testimonies, Role Models…

“Let no one despise your youth, but be a pattern to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity”  – – 1 Timothy 4:12

I’m sick with a cold, and stubborn as I am, must sit at my computer and write. So, today’s topic? Being a pattern, or a testimony, or a role model.

I went out to check the mailbox for our mail, and I caught a glimpse of my neighbor across the street (who lost her husband to some form of cancer several years ago) pitching a ball to her grandson as he prepared to hit the bat to it. My thoughts were something along the lines of: “I want to be like her, like that, doing the very same thing one day…”
She still misses her husband, of course, when you lose your loved one, your spouse, you’ll miss that person for the rest of your life. But, from time to time, I’ll catch a glimpse of her mowing her lawn, gardening, going out to shop, etc. And I wonder – – “how does she do it?”
To me, she’s a pattern of someone who’s been able to survive losing someone, and has managed to go on in life, – – she has children, and grandchildren, and I’m sure this is one of the things that keeps her going, but she lives on her own, too. So, yes, I’m very impressed, that she can be a mother, and a grandmother, and do all these things…after losing someone.

I want to list out several other role models, and patterns (in no particular order) :

  • my mom: she read all the ministry that she could when she was younger. She was strong in her faith, had been dealt with in the arrangements that God gave to her, and loved the Lord so much. Her faithfulness in her care for others in a personal way, and to pray for others is what gives me the motivation to do the same.
  • my dad: Growing up I would see him in the word..early in the morning, even before the light came out for the day. Active in the church life, serving, taking care of others. – – This is a huge reason why I am happy for the chance to serve when I can.
  • my sister: one of my heroes – why? Because she’s intelligent. She’s beautiful. She has a great family. She can run marathons (something I don’t think I can ever do) She loves the Lord in her own way. And because she’ll adjust me in areas where no one else can adjust me, though, at times, I have to admit, I’m stubborn, and don’t care to listen. I do appreciate what wisdom she can bestow on me.
  • my brother (the one that lives in FL): a pattern to me in figuring things out, being brave enough to live on his own, and support himself – – for knowing what it is to be with family. When mom passed away, he took my sister and i in his arms, and we all cried together. I look up to him for that moment.
  • Joy: A pattern of being independent, and practical, in a practical way. For also staying in the Word so faithfully despite all the things she has gone through, suffered through and for being a testimony of what the Lord can do in someone who stays faithful to Him.
  • Gloria: For being the one and only who ever took the time to really listen to my heart, to spend with me, to get to know me, to pray for me, for putting up with me, and despite all she has gone through, for being able to minister Christ, and always pointing me to Christ – teaching me how, so that one day, I’d be able to come to Christ on my own.
  • All the sisters I’ve ever known in the training: A pattern to me, in their own ways, for being so supportive, for praying for me. Being faithful to encourage me, despite all that they’ve gone through.
  • Abigail: For being there, every single day, to talk to, to vent to, every step of the way throughout the time I was caring for my mom, for ministering to me, for continuing to encourage me and for being able to see my life from the outside and giving me her perspective on it. 
  • Lauren and Family: For being my second sister, my family, taking care of me, being there to listen to me, to let me cry on you, to cry for me, to hug me, to love me, to pray with me.
  • To all saints, to all the saints, every one of you who has been an integral part in my journey of growing up in the church life: There is no one quite like each of you. You all encourage me to go on. You pray for me. You love me for who I am. You minister life to me. You’ve taken care of me and my family in such a loving way, practical way, and have prayed for us.

    It’s not a small thing to see all these ones. There are too many of you to count, but, you’re a testimony to me, you’re a role model to me, and you’re a pattern to me. You may not know it. You may not see it, you may not think it, or realize it. But you are. You’re a part of the Body. I’m a part of the Body. In so many instances I wish I could be like all of you. But I’m so glad, we each have our portions, that build up the Body.
    In my growth in Christ, my desire is to be like you all, to be like the Christ in you all, who cares for others, ministers life to others, who teaches the Word to others, who prays for others, who shepherds, who brings others to Christ.
    So to all of you, Thank-you, thank-you, thank-you.