To all you mothers out there – today is OUR day. A whole day for the whole world to honor moms. For our families to celebrate us and all the things we do…
As wonderful as that sounds and as sweet as it is to receive your children’s hand-made cards, art or maybe some breakfast in bed, if you are honest you’ve probably also experienced some let-down at some point on this day. If not in the past, it may happen later today or in the future because it’s really not all about us, ever.
Perhaps you have a great morning of little gifts and after-church lunch but then as the afternoon wanes you find yourself intervening between sibling fights, getting up to clean up a mess or to change a diaper and eventually you are back in the kitchen washing dishes or getting lunches ready for tomorrow. All on your supposed day-off!!
Or what about this…you had really hoped your husband would get you a nice gift, that something you’ve been wanting, only to find he all but forgot it was even Mother’s Day. Making matters worse you see on Facebook what everyone else’s families did for them. Now you are stewing over all that you do for your family, all that you sacrifice and what you deserve!
Can you relate to this disappointment or the bitterness or feeling under-appreciated?
You are probably not alone, but comfort in numbers is not enough. What each of us need when we are battling these emotions is a perspective change. This may sound crazy, but it’s possible for us to turn Mother’s Day in to an idol!
As I’ve said before anything, whether it be a person, object, expectation or feeling, that rules and controls our heart instead of God can become an idol. A good test to know if this is the case is to think of it as being in a clinched fist or opened palm…
So with the issue of Mother’s Day, if you are holding on so tightly (clinched fist) to your expectation of how the day should go then when anything interferes or doesn’t measure up, you will be left disappointed. Or maybe angry or bitter. This is an indicator it was ruling your heart!
Instead if you are holding your expectations in an open palm then when something interferes or doesn’t measure up, it won’t rule you. You may still feel disappointment, but the key is it won’t rule you! You will be ok; it won’t rock the boat and effect your whole mood for the rest of the day. It may even enable you to have an honest conversation with your husband and instead of fuming you will give grace.
It’s not that having expectations are wrong, it’s what we do with those expectations. Often times our idols are not “bad” things, they are actually “good” things, like wanting to be a good mom or to be honored as a mom. The problem is we elevate these things above all else so they are no longer in their proper place. When we realize this has happened the good news is we have a God who loves to give us grace, even though it is Him we misplaced from the throne of our heart.
He understands this about us; He created us as worshippers. But our sin causes us to divert our worship off of Him and on to other things. That is why He came – to free us of the penalty of our sin. Remembering His abundant grace daily then leads me to want to worship Him and be free of idols that rule and destroy.
So on this Mother’s Day shift your focus off yourself and on to the God who has blessed you with your family! With this in mind…
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