As a mom, you will do all this and more in one week . . .
- cook 21 meals, plus snacks
- with two Littles in diapers, you will change 70 diapers
- scrub anywhere from 1-5 little heads . . . along with their various other bodyparts of ears, rears, noses and toes
- wash, fold, and put away close to 10-14 loads of laundry
- snap and unsnap carseat buckles probably 20 times
- read books, sing songs, and hold chubby bodies more hours than you can count
- make breakfast, lunch, and supper with a baby on your hip
- drag all your kids in and out of the grocery store – possibly while throwing fits in the shopping cart
- clean up numerous spills, pick up Legos multiple times, and change the baby’s crib sheets – again
- and more.
There have been times when I’ve cleaned up the second, third, or fourth spill of the day and asked myself . . . “Why am I doing this?” What really motivates me to serve my family?
I serve my family because I love them.
They are precious beyond compare, my flesh and my blood, and they drive me slightly crazy. Yet I love them. Why else would I sleep on the couch for nights in a row with a grumpy baby who doesn’t want to sleep through the night? Why else would I remove the cars from the bathtub when I just did that yesterday or make their favorite cookies over and over? What motivates me to write those crazy notes on their school sandwich wrappers that will get thrown away within seconds?
The sweetness, individuality, and fun of our families bring us moms joy like no other.
But what about when they are not sweet? When their individuality begins to come off as disrespect and their fun escalates until someone’s feelings are hurt. What about when they are as unlovely as unlovely can be?
What then? From what motive can I find joy to serve my family then?
Then I serve my family because I love the Father.
When I can take my focus off of my grouchy kids, messy house, the pile of laundry, and a husband who perhaps had a bad day at work . . . then I am left with only one purpose for doing anything. Because my Father asked me to. Because He has placed within my hand precious souls who need loving and nurturing in every blissful moment . . . and every unhappy circumstance.
It is then that I can wrap my arms around that stressed-out hubby. I am there. I care.
It is then that I can pick up those grouchy kids and sit down with a book until tears are dried and smiles come once again. Mama knows. And she loves in spite of the tears.
It is then that I can look at that pile of laundry and that messy house and say . . . “Lord, how can I glorify You in this?” And then do it with a smile and a prayer for each recipient of those clean socks, shorts, and pants.
It is there in the laundry room, the kitchen, at bathtime, and in the midst of wailing children that I lay down my selfish desires. It is after the third or fourth squabble of the day, the moment when my patience is at an end and all maternal love seems to have fled my heart – that I am faced with a decision.
Will I be faithful in that which is least . . . so that the Father will trust me in that which is much?
Who is the one that sits upon the throne of my heart –
is it my dashing husband, my awesome adolescent kids, or my adorable squishies?
Who am I really doing this for?
And then I slip my hand into the Father’s,
look into His eyes, and say . . .
“For You, and only You, do I serve them.”