A Mother’s Life: The Profoundest of Classroms

“I will spend myself to the last ebb for you; you may give me praise or give me blame, it will make no difference…When we realize that Jesus Christ has served us to the end of our meanness, our selfishness, and sin, nothing that we meet with from others can exhaust our determination to serve men for His sake.” -Oswald Chambers

My husband read this devotion from “My Utmost for His Highest” this morning. Oh the sting of the realization that servant-hood is so completely counter to my nature!
And yet I know that my greatest job on earth is to press into my children, like a mold, the image of Christ, and that image, in a word, is SERVANT.
That’s what He came for–to serve, to be spent, and to lay down His life. And that is what He asks from us.
That is why the world hates Him so; because our flesh finds this detestable. Being “abased” as Paul said he was willing to do, is not en vogue.
Because we live in a culture that SCREAMS the antithesis of Jesus’s teachings–in a culture that says, “Look out for you“, raising children to be servants takes all the more intensity of effort.
We must fight against our own tendencies to pamper and coddle them, and keep the goal fixed in place–raising up real warriors for Christ means raising servants who are willing to empty themselves for others, without any expectations–the greatest irony of human nature.
So mothers, does your job feel menial–the scrubbing of toilets, the wiping of noses, the changing of diapers? If you will only perform these tasks with humility, tenderness and contentment, your life has become the profoundest of classrooms, and your children will become the wisest of students.

3 thoughts on “A Mother’s Life: The Profoundest of Classroms

  1. Love this article! Also, love the picture of mom/daughter reading together … does anyone know where I can find this to frame it in my home (or similar photos like it)?

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    1. Hello! I cannot place the name of the artist who painted this particular portrait, but it looks like John Singer Sargent or one of his contemporaries. You will find a lot of similar paintings from the Victorian and Edwardian eras on AllPosters.com (though you have to be careful about other images on that site). Here are some links to some of my favorite mother-child paintings:

      http://arthistory.about.com/od/from_exhibitions/ig/Americans-in-Paris/amerinpar_29.htm
      http://www.paintinghere.com/painting/Reine_Lefebre_And_Margot_Before_A_Window_11468.html
      http://www.allposters.com/-sp/Mother-and-Child-Posters_i123632_.htm
      http://www.allposters.com/-sp/Moonbeams-Posters_i1249336_.htm
      http://www.allposters.com/-sp/Sweet-and-Low-Posters_i1248559_.htm
      http://www.allposters.com/-sp/Young-Mother-Sewing-Posters_i314525_.htm
      http://www.allposters.com/-sp/Mother-and-Child-Posters_i1585337_.htm

      There are lots more. Just run a search on AllPosters for “mother and child.” 🙂 Hope this helps!

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  2. Thank you for this post. I need to be remided daily to “deny myself and take up my cross”. Last week after writing an article about being a servant as a homemaker, I was tested the next day. My baby was awake in the night. Thus I was tired already, had open house, so I had to clean all morning. Usual routine to go to farmer’s market that morning too. My two daughters were not getting along so well. My dear husband had not slept much because of his night watch at house of prayer. I felt like complaining all morning. Then I remembered what I had just posted the day before and I knew God wanted to polish me a bit more. It worked, I surrendered and accepted the overload knowing that it is only by His grace.

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