I'm Selfish. Are You?

Just the other day...my baby girl said to me, "Mommy, will you snuggle with me?" Of course, my heart melted. I happily complied! Cuddling her as I rocked her, I thought about motherhood and how it has changed me...how all I ever thought about it was completely wrong and somehow, right, all at the same time.

My biggest surprise was that motherhood revealed the selfishness of my own heart to a degree I had never noticed. It started the night my first was born and I was denied precious hours of sleep. It only took a few more nights of that for me to realize, life would never be the same and what I wanted no longer mattered...at least not to her!

That night was just the tip of the iceberg. The Lord, in His wisdom, sent all three of my children with ice picks in their hands! They have done a great job at chiseling away at the enormity of my self-love, but as much as I hate to admit it...it still remains. I would think by now that I should be the "perfect" picture of a sweet, giving, sacrificial mother...but I am reminded daily that although I have many moments of triumph (thanks be to God!), I'm still so stinkin selfish, it makes me sick.

A request to snuggle is a pleasant one. Snuggling is easy! It's all the gazillion other demands on my time that make me sometimes want to run out the door and just keep running (picture Forrest Gump).

"Mommy, can I have a drink? Mommy, I can only find one shoe! Mommy, how do frogs hop? Mommy, she  stuck her tongue out at me! Mommy, I'm bored! Mommy, I have a hang nail! Mommy, watch this! Mommy, can you read me just one more book? Mommy, can you watch this 2 hour show I made up for you? Mommy...Mommy...Mommy........".....all these requests while at the same time feeling the pressures of dishes and laundry and meal planning and homeschooling and ministry and.....

Wow! It's a lot!! But ultimately, I have had to realize that God presents me with something daily...a choice.

I can choose to yell at my kids for not doing what "I" want them to do (like leave me alone). I can stomp around my house in a huff, thinking how unfair it is that I have virtually no time to myself. I can make my kids feel guilty for asking me for help. I can shame them for not doing things "the right way". I can completely ignore them and leave them to fend for themselves while I hide away in a book or on my computer or on the phone or in the bathroom or in a dark corner of the closet (what? you've never done that?!)...;o)

I could do all of that and teach them, very effectively, who is the most important...


Or, I could choose to fulfill my role as mother and take the higher road paved with true love and self-sacrifice. It's the highway chosen by best among us. It's THAT road that I seek to choose daily!!

Please let me encourage you -- these years of snuggling and rocking and wonder and imagination...they'll be gone if you blink...so try to keep your eyes wide open! Like me, you may have an iceberg of selfishness looming just under the surface, beckoning you to give in. Don't get me wrong, there are times that you DO need to take time for yourself in order to be healthy and let's face it...emotionally stable(!)...I believe that. However, there are times that thinking only of YOURSELF has influenced you to give your children and your husband second best...the leftovers...the crumbs. Those tangible, precious gifts from the Lord DESERVE YOUR BEST!

There is a verse in Joshua 24 that says, "Choose for yourselves this day who you will serve...as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord."

I implore you to CHOOSE to serve the Lord, and not yourself, no matter how stressed out and "done" you might be. Please realize, the way you treat your husband and your children, IS an act of worship unto the Lord! First Corinthians 10:31 says, "So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God."

Did you really get that??? Do it ALL for the glory of God! 

When I choose my kids, God is honored. When I choose my husband, God is praised. When I lay down my desires for the sake of another, I look most like His Son!

I know mothering effectively and pouring yourself out day after day is hard...believe me. But oh, if you'll just stay the course, the joy to come at the end of this mothering journey will be SO WORTH every ounce that you give up! And the divine paradox is always this -- you will get back more than you ever imagined -- you will reap what you have sown!

Our culture tells us...do what feels best to you and don't worry about the consequences.

As a Christian, a wife, and a mother, that's a lie you can't afford to buy into! Often, what seems "right" in the moment is the very thing that causes the greatest destruction in a life. If it's your goal to leave a legacy that lasts for generations to come, you MUST and I repeat, MUST, learn to turn off the outside voices of our culture that scream, "It's all about you!"

Because it's not...
not now and not ever.

As a mom, it's about them. As a wife, it's about him. 

But over and above it all...it's about the LORD!!!


For His glory,