A Wilderness Sabbath: Towards Motherhood


[Image via Landon Coate on Pinterest]

Editor’s Note: This article is one in an occasional series called “A Lenten Pause,” running on Fidelia’s Sisters until Easter. As many young clergy women plan to come to our summer conference, Sabbath in the City, in Chicago we’ll be taking a look at the sometimes terrifying topic of sabbath and the role it plays in our ministries.

I changed jobs recently.

My family and I moved to the mid-west in April of 2011. My husband, Andy, who is also a clergyperson, responded to God’s call to serve the First Presbyterian Church in Bloomington as their head of staff. I was an associate pastor for youth and children at Presbyterian churches for more than 7 years, and found myself serving a much smaller parish. There are two members – my twin babies.

Upon their arrival, my vocational identity shifted quite abruptly, and threw me into the deep end into an unfamiliar world out of a space that was home to me for so long. Instead of reading theological commentaries, I found myself scouring books on parenting and baby’s development during the first year. Instead of leading devotionals for committee meetings, I was washing cloth diapers. Instead of crafting alternative worship experiences for the youth on Wednesday evenings, I was bouncing babies in chairs to help them fall asleep. Instead of writing sermons, organizing mission trips, training Sunday School teachers, and branching out to the community, I was doing the bare minimum to survive long enough to make it to the next day where the seemingly endless cycle of feed-burp-change-play-sleep began again. Instead of enjoying a happy hour at the local pub, I was counting down the minutes until bedtime.

Quicker than you can gulp down a shot of tequila, I went from full-time pastor to full-time parent. More accurately, and simply, I became a stay-at-home mom.

I was wandering in a wilderness. Anxious. Fearful. Delirious.

Read the rest at Fidelia’s Sisters.