Intentional Living

I was reading through the latest edition of MomSense, a magazine published by MOPS.  This magazine is perfect for the busy mom... it's articles are no more than a page long and always full of funny antidotes, charming stories and convicting words... and no advertisements to entice you to spend money!  I usually read it from cover to cover.
I came across an article called Invitational Living (pg 21 if you've got it) and it got me thinking... a lot.  There is little difference between invitational living and intentional living.  In fact, if you're living intentionally, you're automatically invitational.

Where am I going with this?

To live intentionally means to do everything with a purpose... to live for a goal.
I brush my teeth because I would like to see them grow old with me... that's intentional!
I feed my children nutritious foods because I would like to build healthy habits that will be long lasting... that's intentional!
I read to my children because I want them to develop a love for learning... that's intentional!
I teach Bible stories to my children because I want the Word of the Lord to be engraved on their little hearts... that's intentional!

I like to think that most everything I do throughout my day is intentional... and if it isn't, I've got to work on that!

Another way I've been intentional lately, has been by reaching out beyond my comfort zone for the sake of other mothers.

Your kids are playing at the park and you see her, sitting on the bench, alone.

You've all been there... I know I'VE been there.

How hard would it be to go over and sit next to her and strike up a conversation?
For some of us, the thought is paralyzing.  The possibility of rejection is always present.  She could give you THE face (you know the one) or be short with you.
Yeah, that's absolutely true.

But what if she's new in town?  I've been new in town and dying for someone... ANYONE... to come and invite me to be a part of their cool club.  I was dying to know where the best parks were... which restaurants were to die for... what churches had great kids programs.

Or maybe she's not new in town, but she's the very first of all her friends to become a mom... and now she feels isolated and alone.  She can't talk to her friends because they're all at work and all she has to talk to is a beautiful blubbering 6 month old... he's cute, but not a great conversationalist!  I'm sure she's DYING to pick your brain and just have some adult interaction.

So often, we think that giving a sweet "hi" and a smile is enough... but is that intentional?  Is that invitational?

You don't know what to say or how to strike up a conversation?  My mom always told me to say, "Hi, my name is Nicole, what's your name"... but I can't think of anything more awkward than THAT!  So usually, I simply start asking them about their kids... I mean, really, what mom doesn't love to brag on her kids a bit... I know I do!  Give me the mic and I can talk about my boys all day long!  You wanna get a mom talking, ask her about her kids... even if they look like monsters to you, they're her pride and joy! 

Now, just because you talk to a random mom doesn't mean you have to become BFF's with her... but you could!  Maybe you realize you have a connection... your kids play well together... and voila! a friendship is born.  It could happen... it's happened to me!  If you feel that connection, don't let it end... ask her for her number or email... or if that's too intimidating, promise to find her on FB later that night... and do it!  Make plans to meet up again... don't let that opportunity for authentic connection slip by just because it's time to go.

Here's a challenge.  It's summer time!  Time for kids to be outside and moms flock together under the shade.  Why not step outside your comfort zone a bit and live intentionally?

It might change another moms life.
It will definitely change yours.