|"Home is where women have the most power and influence" ~Julie B. Beck |
"To nurture means to cultivate, care for, and make grow. Therefore, mothers who know create a climate for spiritual and temporal growth in their homes."
Every day, around the world, an army of mothers rise up out of bed, and step forward to nurture their families. The work we do is sacred because it is unselfish, done out of the purest love. Every dish washed, diaper changed, and bit of laundry folded is an expression of love for our husbands and children.
Of course, there can be bad days where we feel completely unappreciated and unnoticed-- we have all experienced these at one time or another. But I don't know anyone who has chosen the path of motherhood in order to garner attention. (Okay, let's hope that is not the case!) Anyone who might have done so will be sorely disappointed!
With true love comes sacrifice, and when we serve our families with hearts full of love, we truly consecrate our efforts. The Lord sees every sleepless night, every tantrum endured, and each tear we wipe away.
Our Savior, Jesus Christ, spent His life serving without ever expecting anything in return. Just think about what a privilege it is to be a mother, giving of ourselves as He did!
Joy in Homemaking
"Another word for nurturing is homemaking. Homemaking includes cooking, washing clothes and dishes, and keeping an orderly home."
Whether we like it or not, we mothers set the tone and example in our homes. When we serve with cheerful hearts and smiles, our children will do the same-- and the opposite is certainly true!
I know that we ALL struggle with this! Very few of us would find a sinkful of dishes something to rejoice over. (Hee! That's kind of a humorous image... LOL!)
Every day, we have a decision to make before we begin performing our homemaking duties: will we work with the attitude that we are nurturing our family, or will we work begrudgingly, feeling sorry for ourselves?
We can be a blessing or a martyr-- every day the choice is ours!
Teaching Children to Serve
"Working beside children in homemaking tasks creates opportunities to teach and model qualities children should emulate."
Once we get started in our homemaking duties, we get into a familiar rhythm and end up feeling better about ourselves for what great housekeepers we are! (At least *I* do.) I know that when I begin with one task, I find it easier to begin wiping down countertops, washing pans, and sweeping. If I allow myself, I find that I turn into a cheerful fairytale character, singing and dancing while singing. (And no, this is not an everyday occurrence, but when it does happen, it is fun!)
When we can make cleaning fun and take the time to turn chores into a family time that unifies, we teach our children much more than how to work and clean. We teach them that there is joy and satisfaction in caring for the home and family!
The Noblest Career
Because the work we do in the home is repetitive, sometimes we honestly wonder if we are doing any good in our own families, much less in the world! But I love this complete quote by C.S. Lewis, which most of us have often seen paraphrased
“I think I can understand that feeling about a housewife’s work being like that of Sisyphus (who was the stone rolling gentleman). But it is surely in reality the most important work in the world. What do ships, railways, miners, cars, government etc exist for except that people may be fed, warmed, and safe in their own homes? As Dr. Johnson said, “To be happy at home is the end of all human endeavour”. (1st to be happy to prepare for being happy in our own real home hereafter: 2nd in the meantime to be happy in our houses.) We wage war in order to have peace, we work in order to have leisure, we produce food in order to eat it. So your job is the one for which all others exist…” ~C.S. Lewis (pg 447-Letter of CS Lewis 1988 ed.)
Each one of us IS making the world a better place, day by day.
We can be happy in our service at home, when we remember what our end goals truly are. We can
do it-- with the Lord's help, we can find happiness at home through our nurturing!
Doing my best to serve my family with a joyful heart,