I’m Up to My Neck in Expectations— & About 26 Verses Short of the Proverbs 31 Woman


Okay, so I want you to picture yourself sitting at my kitchen table.


Here’s what it looks like so you can get the visual in your head:

(If you were here, I would move my son Luke’s sweaty wristband thing. You’re welcome.)

Anyway, so here we are hanging out (with coffee, because of course) and our conversation ranges from what we had for dinner last night, to what we’re currently reading, to how in the world are we going to get the house clean before the Super Bowl party?

We talk about basketball schedules, and science fair projects, and menu planning, and how we’d like to renovate the master bath.

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And so the talk goes, until we realize you should probably leave because neither of us has time to spare. Because, hello, we’re up to our eyeballs in commitments (even though we don’t really experience any of them). Mostly because we’re calculating whether we’ll have time to swing by the grocery store before we get in the car rider line.

While you take one last sip of coffee, I ask you: Why do we do this to ourselves? What do you expect of yourself on a daily basis? 

And if you and I have much in common, you might respond with something like this:

I expect myself to be: 

  • The Super-Neighbor-Loving Christian Who Loves & Gives & Serves With a Smile
  • The Greatest Wife Who Never Has Headaches
  • The Unflappable Parent Who Always Has Brilliant Wisdom For the Situation
  • The Bargain Shopper
  • The Trendy Dresser
  • The Ultimate Mother-Tucker-In’er Who Reads With Her Child Every Night Before Bed
  • The Rememberer of All Friends’ Birthdays
  • The Errand Runner, Menu Planner, & Semi-Decent Dinner-Maker
  • The Quick-Text-Replier
  • The Organic Mom Who Keeps Her Own Garden
  • The Perfect Daughter, Loving Sister
  • The Thoughtful Gift-Giver
  • The Thank You Card Writer
  • The Dishwasher, Counter-Cleaner
  • The Paper Pile Manager
  • The Wardrobe Manager, Social Director & Event Planner
  • The One Who Makes Sure Everyone Matches (well, sometimes this)
  • The Crafty-DIY’er
  • The Efficient RSVP’er
  • The Even-Tempered Gentle-Answer Giver
  • The Spotless Housekeeper
  • The Breakfast Server, Lunchbox Packer, Snack-Creator
  • The Disciplined Fitbit Wearer
  • The Household Healthcare Provider & Interior Decorator
  • The Savvy-Ad-Searching Grocery Shopper
  • The Homework Helper, Poster-Maker, & Cookie-Baker
  • The Non-Reactor To Spilled Milk, Broken Vases, & Arguing Children
  • The Mom With One of Those Marvelously Organized Mom-Calendars
  • The Sunday School Teacher & Home Room Volunteer
  • The Faithful Prayer & Calm-Breather
  • The Consummate Friend Who Never Disappoints
  • The Fit-Bodied Fitness Lover & Ab Sculptor & Yoga Poser
  • The Mover, The Shaker, The Holiday Decorator
  • The Servant-Hearted Leader & Advice Giver
  • The Star Seminary Student, Bible Teacher, & Frequent Blogger of Brilliant Things
  • The Cheery-Chipper-Jesus-Loving-Always-Smiling-Happ-Happ-Happiest-Do-It-All-Woman-To-Ever-Fill-A-5’8?-Frame.

Yeah. Perhaps I need to go all Dr. Phil on myself and ask how the heck that’s working out.

Because I get breathless just reading that list. Not to mention the chest-pressing anxiety that wells up when I stare at the cavernous gap between my reality and my expectations. Because as it turns out, I’m about 26 verses short of being a Proverbs 31 Kind of Woman.

Now grab your own list, and set it out on the table next to this one:

What Jesus Expects Of You:

Love Him.

Love His people.

Doesn’t that give your soul room to breathe? Oh my word, that’s called FREEDOM! 

The best part is: IT’S THE TRUTH. Jesus knows right where you are, how you are, who you are, why you are, and where He’s taking you. And He loves you.

Which means you can let go of your life-draining list and people-pleasing stress; take a deep breath; and enjoy today. You might even forget a thing or two, but you won’t let it shake you.

Because you know whose “list” defines you. And that’s enough.

(By the way, feel free to share this post with your friends who need to let themselves off the hook.)

May grace & peace be yours to the FULL,


p.s. before you leave, please take note that I haven’t dusted in 2 weeks. And no one has died yet, so…

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Amy Dalke
Amy Dalke is a wife, mom, and stepmom who blog with a lot of grace-filled sarcasm (yes, she does, I swear!), humor, and love for Jesus at AmyDalke.com. She would love for you to come hang out with her there as well as on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and Google +. Oh, and also? She wants you to know that God made you on purpose, for a purpose. He isn’t waiting for you to get your life on track before you start following him; and he’s not keeping your score. He just loves you. And he thinks you’re awesome