When Can I Start Doing IMPORTANT Things?
Several years ago, I remember pondering my purpose as I was standing in the middle of our living room with a stunned look on my face. I was holding a crying toddler who had painful molars breaking through her gums. My feet were surrounded by toys that had been dumped (for the fifth time that day) onto the floor. The couch was filled with unfolded laundry, and I was staring into the kitchen where one of my sons had just accidentally knocked a glass jar of honey onto the tile floor…true story!
Let me tell you that my purpose in life was not in the forefront of my mind at that moment. I could not see past where I was right then, and frankly, it did not feel important or worthwhile. After all, how can cleaning up sticky, broken glass and disciplining a child who didn’t obey my instruction to not dump out toys be significant?
I know…being a mom is a wonderful blessing. But those moments made that hard to believe.
Have you ever felt that way? Well, let me tell you something you already know but probably need to hear again: They won’t always be this little. They will grow up. And when they do, you will see that this work was not for nothing. It was worthy and beautiful!
Interestingly, as quickly as your children enter your household, that is how fast they will move out as adults. We had four children within 6 years. Those were busy times, indeed. But within another short 6-year period, they all graduated from high school and moved on to do other things.
My husband and I were stunned at how our dinner table dynamics changed so rapidly. What happened to the sweet, lovely mayhem? I caught myself with those thoughts. Was it really always lovely and sweet? It is interesting that I only remembered it that way…
So was I doing something important during those days of raising and teaching our children? Yes!
Was it easy? NO.
A Wonderful Purpose
Was it indeed a wonderful purpose – a blessing given to me by God? Absolutely.
You see, raising children is the BEST purpose we as moms can have. It is an opportunity to train and pour into little minds and hearts. It is a mission field in itself. We are stewards of these little humans God entrusted to us. We are charged with the critical job of loving them, modeling for them how to love their Lord, and preparing them for what God has ahead in their lives.
This brings glory to God. It is a precious and worthy purpose. And I know that it’s not always a beautiful process, but anything worthwhile will involve less-than-glamorous work.
In John chapter 5, Jesus tells us that he is the vine and we are the branches the Father prunes and trims so we may bear fruit. Then he says, “Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.”
When do we start bearing real fruit? When do we do IMPORTANT things and fulfill our purpose?
Sweet mama, it is right now where you are. It is wiping the tears from your little one. It is washing the dishes and keeping the home. It is reciting spelling words. In doing this, you are living for the purpose for which he saved you. He prunes and tends you as a vine so the fruit you bear will richly blossom and grow.
What an awesome (and IMPORTANT) purpose!