Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Do Christian working moms exist?

As I’ve mentioned before, it is sometimes difficult being a Christian working mom. Especially if your “working” profile, means more than putting in 15 hours a week as a cashier. The path I’ve chosen means working 50 – 60 hours a week and constantly being “on call”. I also wouldn't change what I do to stay at home. I was not wired for that role. Bottom line, I feel like I do not fit in with other Christian women.

Last night, I went to an all women service at church. The message was about priorities and aligning those with how the Bible commands that we live. In theory a pretty simple concept:
1) God
2) Family
3) Everything else

When the speaker asked how many people in the group (around 100 of us), work outside of the home, there were maybe 10 of us who raised our hands. I felt like a complete outcast. I don’t think any part of the message was intended to be condemning. But as the message continued, I also continued to feel less and less like I could be a good Christian woman because of my life style.

Complete with the self defeating voices in my head, I left the meeting feeling like a failure. No where in those priorities does “be the primary bread winner” fit into the picture.

If you take religion out of the mix, I think working moms still face the pressure of feeling like we have to be able to do it all. What’s worse is we’ve been conditioned that it is a sign of weakness to admit that we can’t possibly do it all.

But that cannot possibly be right.

So this has been on my mind all day. I believe I can love God and my family and still maintain a professional career. In fact, I see my career as my opportunity to help be a witness to other women who are struggling to do it all. The only way I am able to manage everything is by God’s grace.

And let me be very transparent here, I am not a perfect Christian. I have spent most of my adult life making some very big mistakes. But I know that I want to improve my life so I can be a better wife, mother, friend and leader. We all have to start somewhere. I just wish I had more role models and peer support along the way.

If you are reading this and are in a similar inward battle, I would love to hear how you make things work.


Chrystal said...

Hey! I found your blog via Facebook. I don't have an answer for your question, but the Lord knows I'm always looking for it! It's hard to do both. I just keep telling myself the best thing for my family is for me to work. Maybe that won't always be the answer, but right now it's what works. Hopefully I won't have to pay for too much therapy in the future! Love your blog! Hope all is well! Chrystal Kiefer

Matt in B,ville said...

How would your life be different if you did not work. You education would be a total waste your family would be without a large portion of its income and your children would have only the narrow "traditional" view of how a household works. You should not have to appologise to anyone for how you live your life. As long as you love your children, teach them right from wrong and stay active in their lives. I'd say your doing better then 99% of "Traditional" families.

Armageddon Thru To You said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jen said...

Hi Jayme....I too have the same challanges. I get up every day and wonder if my choice to work is affecting my children. I also struggle with time away from home.
I agree with Matt below...."traditional" may not be the best view, or the only view.
I try every day to be the best mom, wife and person I can be. At the end of your life, the only person you have to justify your actions to are GOD. I have a hard time believing GOD would give us the skills and abilities to earn a living outside of the home,
if he did not want us to use them!
I have heard the same message from the pastors at my church. It is frustrating, just because we do not "fit" into their view of a good wife and mother!
Keep you head up, you heart pure, and go home and give those adorable kids some kisses and hugs!