“And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus” Luke 1:31 (NRSV).
This weekend I attended the memorial service of a family friend who had to say goodbye to her 28 year old daughter. When her daughter was nine years old, she was in a tragic car accident that forced her to spend the remainder of her life in the hospital. She suffered irrevocable brain damage and a host of other injuries. Over the next 18 years after the accident, her mother never left her side. She was always present hoping, praying and ministering to her beloved daughter. She remained a steadfast and faithful mother until the very end.
During the eulogy, the minister – who gave me the impression that she, too, buried a child – commended the mother for remaining faithful in the care of her daughter and for finishing her assignment. The preacher’s sermon touched me deeply because it ministered to the weariness I had been facing in the past several weeks as a single mother.
“His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord’” Matthew 25:21 (NKJV).
Oftentimes, the redundancy and the responsibilities of motherhood make it hard for us to see it as a ministry. However, raising a family is sometimes the first ministry that God entrusts to many of us. Before the pastorate, there are the playdates. Before the preaching engagements, there is the potty training. There are no formal worship services, Bible studies or recognition days, but every day is an opportunity to love, instruct and shape young lives for Christ. God entrusts us with the responsibility to minister to our children and lead them in the way they should go.
Parents don’t generally receive accolades for shaping future generations. However, parenthood is the primary way we can demonstrate our faithfulness to the Lord. Our family is our first ministry. Our goal as mothers should be to hear Jesus tell us “Well done.”
When you labored several hours to deliver your baby, well done.
When you stayed up night after night when he or she was sick, well done.
When you were patient with potty training accidents, well done.
When you protected them, well done.
When you made sure they ate right and got enough exercise, well done.
When you taught them their ABC’s, well done.
Our service as mothers is not just about raising well-behaved, productive citizens. It’s about raising a godly seed and adding to the family of faith. It’s about Jesus.
│Before the pastorate, there are the playdates. Before the preaching engagements, there is the potty training.│
When the angel Gabriel came to Mary to tell her about the conception of Jesus by the Holy Spirit, God was giving her an assignment. Her assignment was to birth, care for, raise, instruct and encourage Jesus. We might not have birthed the Son of God, but our children are significant in the Kingdom of God. They are our divine assignments, and God is expecting us to remain faithful. We may not know all of the answers. We may not have solutions to all of our parenting problems. However, if we remain faithful despite whatever hardships we face, God will bless us and give us the strength to perform and complete the assignment well.
Linking up with…