Have you ever seen those cutsie moms with their cutsie newborns in the hip slings with their very trendy outfits on? Well, I don’t know about you, but when I was pregnant with Rosie I always noticed them! I knew having a newborn is hard work but how did they look so “put together”? I looked at them, and took a mental picture of how I wanted to be…as would soon be revealed…at the cost of idolatry.
When you have an amazing church family and a newborn, you get lots of meals and visitors. And that’s what I have. When visitors would come over, I always wanted the house to be tidy and even if I was still wearing my maternity clothes, I wanted to look nice. You know, like having a newborn “ain’t no thang.” Even though I was in pain and could hardly sit in any normal position, I didn’t want it to show. Vanity, my precious idol, was starting to surface.
How did I know that wanting the house to look nice and me wanting to look nice were idolatry? Well, I’d get super stressed out if I knew people were coming over and the living room was messy. I’d get mad at James if he didn’t help me clean up right away. A clean house came before wanting to spend time with God. And when it came to my appearance, I LOVED hearing “you don’t even look like you had a baby” comments-more than I LOVED hearing what God has to say in HIS word.
I really noticed my vanity when one day I started thinking about what I would wear to church my first night back. At first it seems harmless. I mean, seriously, it would be one of my first nights out of the house in a few weeks! But when you weigh what church is really about and what I was excited about, one side was heavier than the other. I wasn’t as excited to hear about Jesus and praise God with His people as I was about what I’d wear. Pretty sad.
I think I still struggle with this. I have to fight my vanity with the truth that I have nothing to boast in, unless it’s in the cross. Because someone far more beautiful and lovely than me looked his worst FOR me. On the cross he was beaten and killed to take away my sins and make a way for me to be near God.
Moms with newborns, take the time to look nice and clean your house (and praise God if you have the time to do those things), but not at the cost of finding more joy in it, than your Savior.
I suppose I will get some comment saying that wanting the house clean and wanting to look nice are not bad things. To that I would agree. But my heart was looking for joy and satisfaction in those things instead of Jesus-and that’s NOT right. Anything good can be replaced with Jesus. It’s not the good things that are bad…its our wicked hearts.