"For the mother is and must be,
whether she knows it or not,
the greatest, strongest and
most lasting teacher her children have."
Mothers are important. Essential, crucial, imperative, relevant, vital, critical, meaningful, the list goes on. I probably don't have to tell you how important a mother is since you've felt it since you opened your eyes this morning. Like I did, waking to "Mom, Little Man peed down the stairs!" yelled at full volume from my son's helpful sibling... way too early in the morning.
A friend's husband was at home because of illness for a few days and laying in bed he heard one thing over and over shouted throughout the house, "Mom!" "Mom" this and "Mom" that. He remarked to his wife, "I didn't realize how much the kids need you during the day."
Being needed. Needed to get endless meals and snacks ready each day for a hungry family. Needed to run the dishwasher... and unload it too. Needed to remember schedules. Needed to clean up pee on the stairs. Needed to kiss this boo-boo or break up that fight. Needed in the middle of the night. Needed in the middle of the day during an important phone call. Needed for answering theology questions. Needed to wash clothes and more clothes. Needed to settle precious little people into restful sleep. Needed to drive here, there, and everywhere.
I was tired of being needed. Sitting at the kitchen table, beginning the same routine again for another day, I was done. You could call it a funk and that was part of it, but mostly, I was just weary of handling life and being so very, very necessary to my family. Yes, I knew I was doing good. Yes, I knew I how important I was.
But..... do I have to?
"Let us not grow weary in doing good." That verse is from Galations (6:9) and it popped into my head in the middle of my "Do I have to?" whine. Paul the Apostle is writing a letter to encourage believers. He calls out some who are not following the example of Christ and then he talks to the ones who are "living by the Spirit." He is saying that they are doing a good job, if they work hard, they will see results in the harvest.
"Let us not become weary in doing good,
for at the proper time we will reap
a harvest if we do not give up."
What I found immensely encouraging about this verse was that I was not the only one in the history of time who had become weary in doing good. Whether it is the all-important job of mothering, or pastoring a church, or working with tough, secular co-workers, or enjoying retirement: do not become weary.
Because why? At the proper time (God's timing always), we will reap the harvest if we do not give up.
The raising of my family is my calling right now. And all the dirty and/or rewarding jobs that go along with it. It is "good work" and Scripture encourages me not to become weary because of this purpose, the harvest!
Also in Scripture, there are many verses about what to do when we get weary. Again, I'm not alone in my tendency to want/need to give up.
Those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength... Isaiah 40:31.
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.... Isaiah 46:1.
When I called, you answered me; you greatly emboldened me. Psalm 138:3.
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.... Matthew 11: 2.
The feeling of weariness is a common one for us moms. Our good work is tiresome and bothersome, along with rewarding, necessary, and important. We are to be encouraged to keep going, God is our refuge, God is our strength, we can be renewed and rested when we find hope in our calling.