Sanctifying Service

Today was a hard day. It wasn’t hard for any particular reason, just hard because I was tired and Ivy was cranky and Henry’s thumb was sore and Sam was upset about his early bedtime even though his bedtime was only early because of his own behavior the night before and Lucy was upset because Sam got seconds at dinner and there wasn’t enough for her to have seconds even though she didn’t even finish her first helping and…

I could go on. Just one of those days – the kind of day when you quite literally consider putting in a set of ear plugs so you can’t hear the incessant calling from one child or another… mom. Mom. MOM!!!


All is quiet now. Children are sleeping, rooms are straightened up, dog is sleeping at my feet. I feel at peace, and yet my mind still goes back to the previous hours, wishing I’d handled myself with a little more grace, a little less frustration.

I get frustrated when I forget that my mothering isn’t a chore, a task in the middle of my to do list. I get frustrated when I forget that this mothering that I do is the most sanctified, glorious service that I can provide.

I often pray to be an instrument in God’s hands. I pray that he will lead me to those that are in need, that I will be prompted to call a friend, make a meal, or even just smile at a stranger that might need a bit of kindness. I pray and I look and I hope God knows I’m here, if he needs me. I wonder how often I’ve looked clean over the heads of my children as I head out into the world to be God’s servant. Do I fail to see their needs?

I believe, if I had a conversation with God on this very subject, he would remind me that while meals and smiles and phone calls are a nice, even important part of doing God’s work, I must not fail to see that in this season of my life, kissing sore thumbs, solving silly disputes and hugging cranky babies is vital. And though it is often thankless, exhausting, and oh, so very hard, it too is God’s work.

Doing service for others feels good. It feels good to be helpful, to reach out and support those that are in need. We cannot sell ourselves short as mothers. Because at the end of the day, even if we’ve done nothing but read stories and kiss thumbs and snuggle children; even if we’ve done it all from our living room while wearing our pajamas, we have still done much good. If we have loved, and lifted and taught, if we have fed or clothed or cared, if we have mothered, we have served God. And that is something to feel good about.

8 thoughts on “Sanctifying Service

  1. Melissa says:

    And you know what Jenny? It continues on with our adult children. Yesterday, I had a less than perfect day with some of my own and failed to extend the grace that was needed in the moment. The spirit has whispered to me that I need to work on this. Man, it's not easy. But it's right. Your children are blessed to have you.

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