The reality was, even if I felt called to be home, that kind of decision doesn’t just happen overnight. Nor does it happen by one person. My husband had to feel certain about it, too. Through the guidance of my friend, I decided that my first step needed to be to lay this desire at God’s feet and let him work it out. And in order to do that, I had to lay the reins of my life aside and let Matt lead our family.
It seemed counterintuitive. If I felt called to do something, then I needed to do it right? What sense did it make to let it go? I realized through multiple sources – particularly through Ephesians 5 – that God wanted me to become submissive in heart to my husband. That was rough. I’m pretty strong-willed and stubborn. I have a type-A personality that makes me think I’m always right. Having that attitude and being “submissive” are like mixing oil and water.
After prayer and searching Scriptures, I realized I had been challenging Matt’s authority virtually our entire 10-year marriage. I had been cutting his feet out from under him, day in and day out. It was most evident in the way I watched Drew, 5 at the time, argue with Matt. I am ashamed where he learned it from. I was certainly not teaching Drew (or Alyssa) the proper respect they needed to have for their dad.
My journey home had to start with submitting myself first to Christ, and second to Matt.
I wish I could say it was a perfect road. I wish I could say I did everything right and here’s how it was blessed. But the truth was, for every two steps forward in submission I would take, I would take one step back by usurping his authority yet again. Still, we made progress.
As I made progress in my heart and actions, I was amazed to see Matt’s heart change. Slowly he began to see the value of my being at home with Drew and Alyssa, and he began to take steps on his own to financially enable me to stay home. Watching this process was incredible! I’ll never forget the joy of seeing God mold Matt’s heart and mine in a way I never would have expected.
But I had to also take some steps myself.
Next week I will share Part 4: The Second Step Home
*Disclaimer: I recognize that the working vs. stay-at-home mom debate has been fuel for countless mommy wars. I want no part of that. I know the reality that many women who work outside the home have no choice in the matter. I also know many choose to work for other reasons. The purpose for this series isn’t to convince anyone that being home is the only right decision because I don’t believe that. Instead, I simply want to share my story for those who might find our path helpful in *prayerfully* discerning which path they might take. My deepest desire is that we would all support one another. I welcome comments that achieve that end. I seek for us to build each other up – no matter where we are – and not tear down. Thank you for letting me share this very personal part of my journey with you!