“Motherhood is not a hobby, it is a calling. You do not collect children because you find them cuter than stamps. It is not something to do if you can squeeze the time in. It is what God gave you time for.” (Motherhood is a Calling, and Where Your Children Rank)
I have it framed, sitting on my bathroom cabinet. I see it every day. But I don’t think the full impact of it has really sunk it until now.
The last sentence…“It is what God gave you time for.” packs a meaningful punch. One that we too often fail to really grasp.
If I’m not careful, I can let my children irritate, frustrate and aggravate me into being a really awful mother. But if I look closely, the things that bother me most often are just part of parenting, part of taking time to help little people learn to grow up–the very thing God gave me time for.
But if we’re busy with other pursuits, our children and all their needs become a peripheral endeavor, easily “bothersome” to my schedule or agenda.
But these children ARE my agenda! In the tiniest moments of the day they are learning and I am teaching. Everything from teaching them how to stir a pot of spaghetti sauce without splashing it to helping them develop important habits of character and ultimately to showing them their desperate need of a Savior because they can’t just “be good”, is my most important job as I act as helper to my husband and keeper of my home.
But as I get it, as I say “no” to the pursuits that are not my first responsibility and I focus my attention, time and effort into guiding, training and teaching these little sheep of mine, it changes my response, gives me more patience and my work becomes a joy, even amid the sacrifice and struggles.
In this short season of mothering, I am committing anew to slow down and take time to tend this flock of mine. To love them, to teach them the gospel by patiently showing them my daily need of a Savior and theirs, of the One who forgives again and again and wipes the slate clean each day; both my sins and theirs. It’s what God gave me time for.