mom and baby foodOkay, quick English lesson/refresher…

An adjective is a word that describes a NOUN and an adverb is a descriptive word that relates to a VERB.  There are only a handful of words in the English language that can carry both labels.  One of those words is “just”.  For example – as an adjective it can describe an event or cause – “it was a just cause” or “the law is just and fair”.  As an adverb it might be, “The arrow just missed the mark” or “We just saw the bus go by”. 

I think the word “just” carries more weight than some of us realize.  For the first time I felt its sting as it described me the other night.  I was so excited to attend an anniversary celebration for the school where I use to teach.  I hadn’t seen some of those people in almost 5 years!   It was wonderful to see everyone but I wasn’t prepared for the line of questions some people delivered.  Their intentions were good, but it reminded me how quickly moms can be described with a “just”.  One woman said, “Are you just staying at home with the kids now?”.  Another man asked, “Are you just a mom these days?”.  You know, I really didn’t take offense (surprising I know).  I don’t think they knew how else to say it and I don’t believe they meant harm or were trying to demoralize my role in society.

No, I think they wanted to relate with me but didn’t know what else to ask about and I’m glad they asked about my kids, my house and my life.  At least they were interested!  So I answered them with an enthusiastic, “YES!” and continued to bore them with cute stories and the long list of duties that keep me not only busy, but fulfilled while I’m “just” at home. 

I think one of the worse things I have heard is when a mom uses the word “just” to describe herself or her children.  You see, if I say I’m “at work” that can mean a million things – if I say I’m “just at work” I kind of give the idea that being at work isn’t a big deal and I’m not doing anything important.  If I say, “I’m just a stay-at-home mom” I portray my calling and my life as having less value compared to the people around me and that makes everyone uncomfortable. 

2 Timothy 2:15-16 says, “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth”.  WOW!  I’m suppose to present myself to God!?!?!  Do I have to be showered, well dressed, make-up?  Does my house have to be perfectly clean?  Do my children have to be well-behaved all the time?  The answer is a resounding NOOOOOO!

The scripture says to “do your best” and THAT is what we are responsible for.  We need to do everything we can to make sure we support, encourage and provide for our families.  Most importantly we never need to be ashamed of what God has called us to do because we ARE doing our best.  We are at our best when we work together and support each other.  We live our best life when we pattern it after God’s commandments and Christ’s example. 

God is faithful – He will show us what our “best” is and how to “handle it” by giving us the “word of truth” through scripture.  No matter how busy our days get we can become even better when we take time to read the Bible and allow that truth to saturate our minds and strengthen our hearts.  When we do our jobs (within or outside of our house) we need to go about our day as workmen that have been called and have a purpose.  Our efforts will be approved by God because we are doing His work and we are doing our best.

You aren’t just a mom, or just a wife – you are an amazing individual with a fantastic calling that only YOU can fulfill.  My group of friends and I are studying the book of Esther.  It’s an amazing story about a queen who started out as just an orphan and ended up saving an entire nation.  In Esther 4:14 Esther’s uncle said to her, “And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a time as this?”

Who knows what your day will be like.  Who knows what your week will bring.   But no matter what happens we know we were made for this time, in this place with these people.  Let’s embrace each moment and know that God is by our side the entire time.

You are just the right kind of mom for your children – and you are wonderful!

4 Responses to ““just””

  1. 1 Marietta Fulk October 22, 2009 at 8:52 PM

    Oh, this is so good.
    When people ask me if I am just staying home these days, I say, “oh yes, I am blessed enough to get to stay home with my sweet babies”.
    This article was encouraging to me-thanks Kasey. Thank you for the reminder of the Esther 4:14 verse. That is good! Nevaeh always takes her broken princess wand and says “alacazam, mommy’s the queen” and turns me into royalty!

    • 2 Kasey Johnson October 22, 2009 at 9:43 PM

      Oh I love it!! You ARE a queen! You are showing her what it means to be proud to be a mom and I know Nevaeh feels so special because you work hard to put your family first. Keep up the great work!

  2. 3 Angi Snyder October 22, 2009 at 2:21 PM

    I needed this reminder! Thank you. Purpose is always a good thing!!

    • 4 Kasey Johnson October 22, 2009 at 2:53 PM

      Thanks for leaving such a great comment Angi! You are such an amazing example of what it means to enjoy each moment in our children’s lives and I’m so glad you are a mom we can all hear from! Have a great day and thanks again for visiting and commenting! You are awesome!

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