Holy Hustle, Boss Babes and Glorifying God

I learned the Holy Hustle Early

My first “real” job in college taught me the Holy Hustle early, it was at FrankinCovey, a planner store.  There I learned how to articulate my values, roles and goals. Creating a realistic and value based monthly, weekly and daily task lists became second nature.  I had laser focus and new how to live an intentional life.  Before the # symbol was called a hashtag, I knew how to #holyhustle.  That same year, I read Colossians 2:23  and this time  it revealed my true motive in most of my do-gooding and godly living. I was looking for acceptance in people: particularly those in the body of Christ.

Though I was far from perfect in college, I battled disordered eating, low-self esteem, overcoming poor grades my first year and depression.  Yet, in the world of academics I excelled at writing good papers, doing my daily reading, I mastered the art of the syllabus.  Amidst the challenges of residential living and leadership, I blossomed.

Bumps Along the Way

After graduating and leaving residence life, I looked pretty good on the outside.  Inside I felt lost for years working and serving.  Once I was back in school for massage I was back to mastering the art of being a student.  It was HARD, but I loved it, I as so good at it that I informally tutored classmates (because I didn’t want them to slow me down in class).  Colossians 3:23 was far from my heart and mind as I pursued accomplishments, yet again.  This hustle looked holy on the outside, but it was not.

Failing at Every Turn

It did not take long for marriage and motherhood to undo my carefully constructed identity.  I assumed my planning skills would serve me well as a homemaker, wife and mother.

Wrong.

I’ve spent most of the the last 6 years feeling like a failure.  The daily confrontation with my sinfulness in marriage and parenting is FAR MORE CHALLENGING than the nitty-gritty of dormitory life.  I’ve never once been able to appear to have it together since my first child was born.

During this time I’ve met personal goals: we’re debt free!   Professional goals achieved: $25,000 in sales working part-time hours!  I have done things that I feel good about, but I’ve never felt like I had it together.

This filled me with shame.

What did it say about me that I couldn’t be successful at anything?  Who was I without my ability to master a task list? I was failing at the most important roles in my life.

As much as my life was about Christ, I was not really living for Christ.  I was doing good things for the wrong reason.

The challenges of living in deep community with my husband and children meant that sometimes I didn’t get it all done. This revealed my self-serving motivations: acceptance, achievement, pride.  It wasn’t about Christ at all.

Called Away from the Hustle, Called to be Holy

For at least 2 years, I have felt a gentle, clear, daily call from my father to a less-hurried life,  centered on the gospel.   Most of my life has been structured on this desire for acceptance, accolades and success.  As benign as that sounds, working for men pulls me from working for Christ.

every. single. time.

Fear of Letting Go

I’m partially afraid to take my foot off the gas pedal of my businesses (yes, plural) because I’m concerned about money and being financially responsible.

Pride is really more of the problem though.  Who am I if I can’t measure my success in ministry hours logged, encouraging notes sent out, business goals met, well-planned meals and a tidy home?

I’m afraid I’ll be no one. A failure.

The Frustration of Unfinished Work

God is calling me to turn my heart toward him, and in that turning my heart to those in my home.  Yet, I don’t feel a release from contributing financially to my family.  This week, I read a post that resonated with me deeply.  Kayse Pratt’s post cut to the heart of my struggles and gave me gospel encouragement.

In my home there will always be days when the dishes are not done, or the laundry still needs to be put away.  I don’t get to put a check mark on my list that says “showed my kids how to live the gospel.”

Like the chores, these things never get “done” even when they are constantly being “done.”  There is no end to reflecting the beauty of Christ.

So while God calls my heart homeward, he also calls it toward his kingdom.  He calls me to bring honor to his name for his glory, not mine.  

Faithful Work without the Hustle

Some women have the option to work or stay home, that isn’t my story.  I work because I must, this is a call.  So, I’m balancing how to work faithfully and diligently without putting all the burden on me.

Yet, I still love my work. Essential Oils have changed my life, and I love sharing these experiences with others.  Doula work: supporting women in labor is invigorating. I love giving people relaxation and relief though massage therapy.  While the finances go towards my family’s needs, none of this work is ABOUT me, it’s about serving others.  Ultimately, it’s about Christ how and why I work.

The advice that fills my feeds creates an inner battle:

  • Build Your Brand.
  • Do the Holy Hustle.
  • Grow your Tribe.
  • “Pray like it depends on God, work like it depends on you.”
  • The Proverbs 31 woman was a #bossbabe.
  • God wants his children to be financially successful. (Let’s not dive into that last one today).
  • I’m a failure and the only option is to try harder, be better.

I’ve been longing to be that stay-at-home mom, the homeschooling mom, the crunchy mom for a long time.  How can I be those things when I have to  do the holy hustle to build my business?  The allure and security of being a Mompreneur, BossBabe holds me back from what God is REALLY asking me to do: lay down my pride and serve him by serving my family.

So, I will continue to work.  By the leading of the Holy Spirit and the grace of God, I’ll work not for my own gain, but for his glory.

We do not work to make a name for ourselves, to pad our bank accounts, or to build a brand. We work as for the Lord. We serve Him. – Kayse Pratt

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Returning To Work

I go back to work in 3 weeks, my how time flies.

I enjoy my work, I create my own schedule, I enjoy the benefits of self employment. I chose self employment, as a single woman, before I was even dating.  I knew I wanted to be a stay-at-home mom, but didn’t know if that would realy happen.  /i chose a career path that should allow me s good amount of freedom.

I love my work environment, my coworkers, the location of my office.  I dreaded leaving my babies, and I expect the same once November 19th rolls around. I was so anxious about everything the first time: scheduling clients, pumping, having time to eat, etc.  With C, I went home after each appointment to nurse, so I eliminated the pumping anxiety.

This time, knowing so much more about marketing, I feel a new work pressure.  I really want to do well, maximize my earnings per hour I am gone.  I want to make it worth my time away.  The pressure with three kids seems much heavier than with two.

So, I am starting to split my focus, some of my brain energy goes to work now.  That is the down side of self employment.  The success of the business sits squarely on my shoulders.  I can’t afford to not think about it now.  I’m trying to decide where my work focus is, and go for that.

It is interesting and new.  I am equally excited and nervous.

It really has gone quickly!

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