|I'm on a Disney kick lately. I don't own this, obviously. It's a Disney thing.|
If you're a Disney lover (or just a parent of a young child), you're probably familiar with one of Disney's newest animated feature films: Moana.
If you're not, you should acquaint yourself. The soundtrack is epic, the story line is inspirational, and let's face it, who doesn't appreciate Dwayne Johnson singing and dancing around...even if it is in animated form.
Now that it's on Netflix, we watch it at least once a day...sometimes twice.
Moana is torn between being the person she's told her island needs her to be - the leader of her people, the new chief - and being the person she feels called to be - a voyager on the open sea.
She strives to convince herself that the island will give her all she needs (and no on leaves), but she's drawn to the water, to the line where the sky meets the sea. It calls to her.
I'm a mom...of 6, with another sweet blessing on the way. When you're a mom of almost 7, there just isn't much time to do anything else BUT be a mother of almost 7.
I'm virtually on an island (that must be made of unfolded laundry), and my people need me.
But the horizon calls me. And a lot of times, that makes me feel really guilty. I feel like taking care of my husband, children, and household should be enough, it should fulfill me, but I LONG to go, do, and be other things.
But there's hope. Here are a few things God revealed to me through countless viewings of Moana:
1. To Everything There Is A Season
To everything there is a season,
a time for every purpose under heaven
Ecclesiastes 3:1 (NKJV)
As Moana grows, she learns to take care of her people. She gets well-acquainted with their needs and how to fill them. When she tries to run off to the ocean, her father redirects her attention to where it needs to be...until it's finally time to venture out on her quest.
There is a season where she is learning to lead her people, which will eventually make her into the person she needs to be in order to persevere through the next part of her journey.
The season I'm currently in is important because of the calling I've received to shepherd these beautiful little people, but ALSO because it's preparing me for the next season.
God is not wasteful. He is calling me to something else, but in His time, and when I'm ready. I have to accept that and enjoy it. Taking care of my children is all-consuming right now, but it won't be forever. As they say, the days are long, but the years are short.
2. My "Other" Calling Has An Appointed Time
For still the vision awaits its appointed time;
it hastens to the end - it will not lie.
If it seems slow,
wait for it;
it will surely come; it will not delay.
And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying,
"This is the way, walk in it,"
whether you turn to the right or when you turn to the left.
Isaiah 30:21 (ESV)
I'm fully aware that being a parent is a high calling. I know the stewardship of young minds and hearts is a great responsibility. That hasn't kept my eye from wandering over to the horizon and wondering what adventures might be just beyond my reach.
However, time and again, I have tried to run off toward what I thought was my calling, and each time, with immense love and incredible patience, my heavenly Father has redirected my attention.
Unfortunately, Moana had to sneak away for her adventure (earthly parents don't always get it right), but I know, when it's time, my Father will not only let me go on my quest, He will lead me.
He's not going to let me miss my purpose. I just have to be patient.
3. Bring Them Along
shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight,
not under compulsion, but willingly,
as God would have you;
not for shameful gain, but eagerly;
not domineering over those in your charge,
but being an example to the flock.
And when the chief Shepherd appears,
you will receive the unfading crown of glory.
1 Peter 5:2-4 (ESV)
In order for Moana to complete her quest, Maui has to teach her to sail. Once she has succeeded and restored the heart of Te Fiti, she returns to her people to teach them as she has been taught. She becomes a voyager, and then teaches them to be voyagers, as well.
Slowly, but surely, as my children grow, all of us will have more time to spread our wings and learn new things. It's my job to be here for them, but also to continue learning and growing (as is appropriate for my season), so I can teach them.
As I'm able, I need to learn, grow, and adventure, so I can return and teach my children to do the same. My kids need to know they can go great things for the Kingdom of God, and they can learn that from my example.
Thus ends my lessons from Moana. Seasons come and seasons go, but the love of my eternal Father remains steadfast and unchanging. He will teach me, guide me, and eventually, lead me to adventures beyond the horizon. Until then, it's my job to patiently wait, and be content to enjoy the season I'm in.