*Beep*Beep*Beep* My husband’s 6:30 am alarm goes off, and he rolls out of bed to start the coffee pot. Monday mornings are rough. I’m already nursing the newborn – almost nodding off in the rocker – and almost like clockwork the toddler starts crying to be let out of his room (nearly an hour before he is “supposed” to come out – thanks “OK to Wake” alarm clock). As the staff team start filling our small living room at 7, the toddler is grumpy, hungry, shy and loudly bouncing off the walls all at the same time, and I’m torn. As I get the toddler his second bowl of cereal, I try to listen to the meeting across the room from us. What did that staff say was bringing her down this morning? Wait, did I just hear that another student is leaving our leadership team? Ok, who did they say just led someone to Christ? The baby starts crying, no longer content to snooze in the swing next to my husband as he begins to lead the team in prayer.
*Ugh* This was not what I thought motherhood and ministry would look like. The tensions are strong and my hormones are raging. One minute I want to throw the staff team out of our home so I can better care for the kids. The next minute I want to shirk motherhood and just be full-time staff again. How does anyone do both well?
Our stories can be so different. We come from different families of origin. We come from different parts of the country, maybe even world. Some of us came on staff as single women. Some of us have never formally been staff at all and “married-in.” Many of us are stay at home moms with ministry laced through our lives. Many of us work outside the home part- or full-time – some with The Navigators but others not in vocational ministry at all. Some are in a season of pulling back from the campus, whether it’s to care for little ones at home or maybe because of a physical, emotional, or spiritual need for healing. Others find themselves ready to re-engage as their youngest enters elementary school or maybe a childcare opportunity presents itself.
But one thing unites us as Navigator collegiate staff moms: the mission “To know Christ, make Him known, and help others do the same®.” Somewhere in each of our stories our hearts were gripped by the vision of reaching the nations through spiritual generations of disciplemakers.
Maybe the seed was planted because that is how God brought you into His kingdom – someone who knew Christ helped you know Him too, and she began helping you pass the truth of that life-changing relationship on to others. Maybe He initially gripped your heart in a college ministry, or through a church. Or maybe through your parents, or sibling or husband. However God initially worked, he is still completing that good work in you (Phil 1:6).
In an earlier season this may have looked like Life-to-Life® relationships primarily with students as you led freshmen Bible studies in the dorm and read the Bible with nonbelieving friends. Now as a mother your spiritual generations are quite literally multiplying underfoot as you raise your children. But even in motherhood God can use your life to multiply disciplemakers beyond home – whether that is still on campus, in your neighborhood, or among your kids’ friends.
So where are you in this journey? As God has gifted you the ministry of motherhood and has sparked this vision of disciplemaking within you, what is He speaking to you in this season? When the mothering is hard, or your influence on campus seems to be waning, what gets you out of bed in the morning?
Regardless of what it looks like for you in your current season, we are disciplemaker moms – in our homes, on the campus and to the ends of the earth. May we be faithful to what God has called us (Matt 28:18-20).