Mothering Monday: Sacred Work

7:58 AMHeather

I know I usually do Make it Mondays.  And I love them, I do.  Because I love to create things.  It's part of who I am.  I've come to realize that it's a need for me.  It soothes my soul to dive into creative work and see a finished product.  Such as every blog post.  Or scrapbook page.  Or home decorating project.  Or even a delicious new recipe.  So, I'm not giving up these "make it" days with you forever.  Just switching it up a bit.  Because I feel the need to gather my fellow mothers together.  And their husbands or children--whomever may read this blog.  So that we can stop and reflect and be encouraged in our journey to raise our children.  

I personally think there should be cheerleaders who burst into the room and yell a cheer to all moms at about 5:00 pm nightly.  The witching hour.  When the kids are hungry, the day has been long, Dad is not quite home, and everything is unraveling.  Big G, little O, GO, GO!  Sis, boom, bomb...you are quite the MOM!

Picture me with pom poms.  Because I want to cheer you on!  I want to remind you of something we lose sight of all too easily.

Parenting is sacred work.  We get these darling little bundles of joy, so fresh from heaven.  A blank slate.  Hard wired to learn and grow.  With cuddly little cheeks and that sweet smell of a freshly bathed baby.  Nothing in the world is quite like it.  Helpless and utterly dependent.  For their every need.  And we are charged with the task of raising them up to be contributing members of society.  Happy, healthy, well adjusted adults. Lord, just help me keep them alive that long!
  
No small task.  Laborious.  Tedious.  Exhausting.  And, often times, it feels never ending.  It causes me to question my every move.  I plow through Facebook and think that I must be a loser mom because my kids did not get the peeps driving a twinkie car dessert for their Easter enjoyment.  Nor did we engage in a twenty-one day Bible study to prepare to celebrate the resurrection of our Savior.  Not to mention that so-and-so's twelve-year-old kid just completed a thousand hours of community service and was named citizen of the century at their middle school just as they caught their flight to immunize orphans in Africa.

Loserville over here.  Not sure I'm doing this right.  Because most days I feel I'm barely keeping my head above water.   I'm drowning in the papers that must be signed with checks attached and the bickering siblings and the endeavor to feed my kids halfway decent meals.  And I fold approximately twelve loads of laundry while looking at the shelves that have to be dusted, and I'm thinking that I'm nothing but a glorified maid.  And not even a great one.  I blame that shortcoming all on our beloved dog who sheds like mad and creates even more work for this mama.

Sacred work?  When does that happen?  Because I don't often experience those Hallmark moments where my children and I have some profound exchange that tells me without a doubt that they are indeed, turning out okay.   Those moments that are Facebook bragging material.

But, sister (and brother--if you are one of my male readers)...let me remind MYSELF and you that it's ALL sacred work.  Every wiped tear, every cleaned counter top, every scrubbed potty.  Every fight that we referee, every reminder we give to wash your hands.  Every coaxing them into homework or bed or any other required task.  It's ALL sacred work.   

Because when we bend low to do the menial tasks, we are most like our Jesus.  
Who stooped to his knees to wash his disciples' feet.  Who repeatedly tried to teach these disciples though they seemed to not receive his lessons.  They failed to grasp the enormity of his words.  They walked every day with the Savior of the Universe yet were petty enough in their own agendas to bicker with each other and to question the One who dared to try to lead.  Just as our little ones often do with us.  

The disciples knew he was the Messiah.  Yet, they, too, seemed to fall short in receiving the ministry he was offering with a grateful and teachable heart.   And they had God in flesh in their midst.

Makes me feel a bit better about the time yesterday that I tried to impart some amazing wisdom.  It was good stuff, I tell ya.  But one child was playing with the window shade in the van, another was zoning out, and the third one was fixing her shoes.  

"Hey!  Listen you guys.  I'm telling you something important!" I wanted to say loudly.  And I may or may not have done just that.  (crickets chirping)....so I gave up.  

Whew.  I'm in good company.  Jesus had this same response from those who knew him best.  Yet, it did not lessen just how sacred his work was.  No, it was heaven glorifying, earth changing work he was up to.  Even if those around him didn't always appreciate it.

Same with us.  When we go about making our house a home, keeping it clean, stocking the pantry, cooking the meals, overseeing the homework, offering the millionth correction for the same misstep--then, we are in very good company.  It's Jesus work.  It's just what he asked us to do. To clothe the naked.  Feed the hungry.  Care for the needy.  

Nothing could be MORE sacred than to pour ourselves out for the sake of others.  It may not be glamorous or very rewarding.  But we must remind ourselves of the truth so that we can kick those lies to the curb.

We are NOT a glorified maid.  No, we are involved in sacred work.  Every day.  We are caring for His children.  We are investing in His people.  The most important eternal treasure that ever existed.  His people.   Every time we do anything for the sake of our children, we are doing it for Him.  He tells us that in Matthew 25.     

“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ 
Matthew 25:40

Listen, here's how I think we need to adjust our thinking.  If Jesus in the flesh walked in my home, I would like to think I wouldn't complain a bit about cleaning my house to make it presentable and welcoming and inviting.  Or cooking meal after meal to feed him.  Or any other task required to simply show love to Him.  I mean, I'd like to think I wouldn't look at him after a few days and say, "Really, Jesus?  You need ANOTHER meal?  You want me to wash your clothes AGAIN?"  I'd like to think I'd be in awe for the opportunity to show my devotion and my gratitude however I could. So that I could demonstrate my love for Him.

And every day, I wake three not-so-little ones who are Jesus in the flesh. They are gifts from heaven.  I was entrusted with their care.  They are an amazing gift to me, and God thought I was the ONE for the task.  He hand chose ME for each of them--to be their mama.  In so doing, he said, "Listen, daughter.  You got what it takes. What this one needs!  You da mama!"

Indeed.  Sacred work.  To continually engage in even the mundane to demonstrate my love. For them.  For Him.  Never knowing which act of kindness and service will make an impact.  And realizing that it's more my heart attitude and my kindness and grace shown in those tasks that tells my children of their worth.  That says I think they are the most amazing gift I've ever received.  And, I'd do anything and everything to care for said gifts.  

Nope, my kids do not applaud my every task.  Nor do they recognize most of them.  But God sees.  Every little thing I do.  Every little act of service completed.  To further his kingdom by caring for his children.  And he sits back, beaming with pride, and says to those surrounding his throne in heaven--"Look!  Did you see that?  Oh, how I delight in her sacred work! Way to go, little Mama!  Way to go!"   

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