Motherhood – Duty vs Sacrifice

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Can we find glorious meaning in the mundane service of family?

We know that God has called us to be servants, and we often pray to that end.  We desire to see God use us. But when, by having children or elderly parents, life require us to be servants, it can make our skin bristle and our blood boil.

Why do we do that?  Why do we separate our service to our family from our service to God?

A dear friend enlightened me about this once.

She told me about taking her grandmother grocery shopping and how she had something of a sour attitude about it.  Then she realized that if she were volunteering her time to take an elderly lady from the nursing home shopping, she would have left that event feeling on top of the world like she had just done some grand thing for the kingdom.  What self-sacrifice!  But since it was her own grandmother, it seemed more like duty than sacrifice.

I thought as she was telling me this that I do the same with my kids.  If I spent a day taking care of the needs of some orphans in a remote place, I’d feel as if I had just done a great thing for the kingdom.  I would have shown them God’s love (cue angelic music here). That’s what missionaries do. right?  But, because they are MY kids, it’s just my duty, not a sacrifice that should be celebrated.  But really, if I wasn’t around to do these things for my kids, they would be orphans.  So now–if I consider myself a missionary to these poor Parham orphans–it brings meaning to the mundane.

I want to challenge us as the women of our homes to let our minds be like that of Jesus who took on Himself the nature of a servant.  Let us serve our families with the same attitude we would serve the homeless in a soup kitchen. Because it is the same Lord we are serving in both places.

Motherhood: Duty vs. Sacrifice

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About Sarah Parham

My name is Sarah Parham. I’m a Georgia girl who has made Kentucky my home. I am a wife and mom of 3, and I work for a campus ministry. My greatest passion is to inspire people to live for the Glory of God. The one in whose image we are all created. Occasionally I blog at sarahparham.com. Come visit sometime!

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