I was reading an article lately that made me start to think. I tend to struggle with comparing myself. Its not biblical, its not mature...but its real and I do it. I look at another woman or read a blog or other social media thing and I start to wonder if I am making the right choices, or start to pick apart what is going on in my personal life. However the other day I was reading something that was so freeing, it said that when we are walking with the Lord and making lifestyle decisions based on biblical principles, we do not have to defend it. It was then I realized my comparing came from a heart of feeling as though I needed to defend my choices if they didn't look mainstream. Choosing to have a large family and putting an idea of a career on perhaps permanent hold, how I dress, what I listen to or watch, what I allow or do not allow my children to do, how much disposable income we have and what that limits when you have such a large family...these are all things that I am constantly in my mind trying to find the perfect words to defend...mostly to myself. However all those things are really the journey God has put me on. Our family doesn't always look like the others, we can't do some things as easily. Most of my children have come from very hard places and that can affect what our daily life looks like. Its reassuring to me that Jesus says, we will not look like the world. Because in the chaos of life I need the reminder because my flesh some days would love to be the one who blends in, some days I am weary. I have to remind myself in these times that the weariness comes because I am on a journey. Journey's make us weary, but they also allow us to experience new things, they help us find a purpose and make a life worth living. Whenever we are on a journey some parts are exhilarating, some parts are good and other parts are drudgery. I think of traveling to Bulgaria a few years ago. It was exhilarating meeting my daughter, it had fun experiences and I got real experience in traveling to a foreign country, but the travel was exhausting and sometimes during the flights I just wanted it to be over. I am also learning that I do not need to find a defense for God's ideals. I can rest in knowing, he says it, I do it and he can take care of the rest. I find it funny sometimes how I try to merge the things of the world with the things of God and then get all frustrated when it doesn't work. Like when I believe just a little more money will make things easier so I can focus more on my spiritual path.....fail......or when I want to serve the Lord wholeheartedly in my home, but I also want to look good so I try to wear nice clothes or fix my hair and makeup only to spill some cooking oil on myself, accidentally rub my eyes because I was outside with the kids and end up with hair resembling Weird Al....fail.... Or my favorite I want to have 8 children from various backgrounds, put them in one family and then have the perfect TV family life....in reality we have some pretty weird and annoying stuff going on here. I can't have it all, I laid down my life years ago to trust God and begin a beautiful journey that has made me someone that the high school me would not recognize. I know the heart of God and I need to drop the baggage and run freely to him. I need to embrace the journey and accept that it is not going to look mainstream or frankly even slightly normal sometimes, I will get weary but I will not fall, I will have troubles but will not be overcome, because these are the promises of my God.