About the name…

why the broken bohemian?

bohemian: a person who lives and acts free of regard for conventional rules and practices.

In planning a girls weekend last fall, I checked out this restaurant and saw the definition and it ‘clicked’- it seemed like the best way to describe how I felt about myself.

I have always loved rules. For other people to follow.

I don’t want rules to apply to me. I want to be able to think and act and be whatever I want. But, I want everyone else to follow the rules. I’ve recently read a book by John Rosemond that has really struck home. Not just for raising my own children, but also for my anti-rules personality. He talks about toddlers and the mantra they live by:

1. What I want, I deserve to have.

2. Because I deserve what I want, the ends justify the means.

3. No one has a right to deny me or stand in my way.

4. The only valid rules are those I make.

5. The rules, even ones that I make, do not apply to me.

I realized I am a grown up toddler. The Bible has another word for it: sinner.

Thus, the ‘broken’ part. I am a sinner. It hurts my heart to think of how many times I have demanded my own way, justified myself, defined my own righteousness, judged others and doubted the goodness of God. But, in His tender mercy He is breaking me and making me who He wants me to be.

{this is a beautiful illustration- scroll to ‘eustace being undragoned’}

I secretly love being different, even controversial. Always have. One summer in high school, I shaved the bottom half of my hair off and became a vegetarian, only a year later to become co-captain of the cheerleaders and involved in student government. I’m the mom who sends her kids to a Montessori school.  I drive an SUV because I definitely do not want to drive a minivan. I’m married to an attorney who’s always wanted to be a pastor but I haven’t wanted to be a pastor’s wife. What I want, I deserve to have. No one has a right to deny me or stand in my way.

The result of my bohemian tendencies is that in pursuit of freedom from conventional rules and practices, I became a slave. I became bound to the idols of personality and culture that I have clung to, just to be different.

God is showing me a better way. In laying down the rights to myself and what I want, and laying myself down at the foot of the cross, I have found a freedom I have never known. I am learning to stop telling the Lord how it’s going to be, and find joy in letting Him lead me.

It has been painful. And humiliating. And humbling. And beautiful.

And along the way, I’ve become one of them. A homeschooling mom with a husband in seminary, in the market for a minivan. It’s actually hilarious.

‘…you have taken off your old self with its practices , and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.’ ~Colossians 3:9-10


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10 responses to “About the name…

  1. Don’t be too hard on yourself…you are a work in progress, always growing and changing. I loved you when you were a hippie, love you now, and will love you even when you get your party van! Woot!
    PS – Don’t forget the summer you stopped shaving your legs. (Last summer, was it…?)

  2. beautiful.and.painful. i am so inspired by your writing! it has been such an amazing thing for me to watch how God has been changing you. he has taught me so much through you;)

    p.s. please don’t get a minivan. pretty please:)

  3. Love you, MB. –Oh, and would you like me to make a jumper for you?
    Keep writing! Oh, and please get a mini van. Because maybe I might have to get one too. Then we can be NERD TWINS!

  4. once you go mini van….

    seriously, i am so glad to have had snippets of time with you on this journey. surrender is hard but it’s beautiful, too. i’ve never felt more beautifully exhausted and at peace as when i have laid down my fight. even so, Lord. even so. it shows in you, beautifully.

  5. “Freeee…as a biiiirrrddd.” Oh how I love you, Sweet MB. Oh how He loves you and me.

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  7. I love you, Mary Beth! And I can relate, oh so much. I wish we lived closer. I would love to have a friend like you to hang out with (in all our spare time 😉 ).
    You are precious. Thanks for sharing.

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  10. I’ve just found you via the 31 Days linkup, and completely identify with this post! since I also read that you’re not at all tech-savvy I’m guessing you don’t have Twitter, but if you do happen to, please message me so I can follow you there 🙂 @ticoandtina

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