“I can’t get anything done!” I lament, as the kids make their happy noises and leave sweet tokens of their presence all throughout the house. “I will never catch up!”
This is a familiar scene at my house–is it at yours as well? Mom is exhausted and frustrated at the two steps she takes forward, just to take one step back…in housecleaning, in laundry, in potty-training, in correction and discipline, in kitchen clean up…it just feels never-ending.
In the midst of one of my complain-sessions recently, I recognized the error in my assessment of getting things done: What am I so in a rush to get done for? What is the important stuff that I think I’m really supposed to be accomplishing that being a wife and mother is seemingly keeping me from? By my actions and attitude, it would appear that I have been charged with greater uses of my time than caring for my family; that the mundane and repetitive tasks of motherhood and housework are merely obstacles standing in the way of worthier priorities.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
Motherhood IS my job. Caring for my home IS my privilege. Preparing a place of rest and renewal for my husband IS the important work to be done. There is a deep selfishness in my own heart that idolizes comfort and pride. It is the sin of desiring what I think will make my life grand more than treasuring whatever it is that the Lord has given to me…to do, to care for, to endure, to carry, to count as joy.
How would our attitude and actions change if we were to recognize that breaking up fights between our children, teaching them about forgiveness of sin, correcting them in love, and then repeating that entire cycle again and again–IS our jobs as mothers! And yet, we tend to want to get them behaving properly once and for all so that we can move on to something more important. We are disappointed and astounded when they are repeatedly sinful, whiny, impatient, or lacking self-control, when it’s for these very sins that God made you specifically to be your child’s mother. How humbling it is when I consider this reality and compare it to the attitude of my heart.
Would we do dishes, fold laundry, or train up our children with a different attitude if it were Christ we were serving? Wouldn’t it seem foolish to complain to the Lord about better things we want to do with our lives if He were a guest in our home? No, instead, we would cook and clean with a sense of honor because Christ is residing there. Friends, He does reside in our homes and in our families. We serve Christ when we serve our families!
Being a wife and mother is not glamorous. It is not looked upon with honor in our culture. It is not always immediately rewarded. It is NOT EASY. Being a wife and mother is, however, a high calling. It brings honor to God, and it bears eternal value. He’s equipped us for any and all things He calls us to. It is through Him and for Him that we do all things!
Today, if you’ve been given the high-calling of mother and wife, I encourage you–as I preach the same to my own heart–to embrace the work with joy, with purpose, and with value. Be here, in the now. There is nowhere more important to be; there’s nothing more important to accomplish.