Motherhood, A Sacrifice of Righteousness

by frazzledmama on January 8, 2014

A few weeks ago something occurred to me in a very real way.  Not to say that I never thought these thoughts before, but I suppose I hadn’t embraced them, or personalized them.

Last year I shared with you the concept that righteous living is a sacrifice to the Lord.  I would love it if you could take the time to click that link and read through that post.  But in case you don’t have the time, here’s the low down.  Psalm 4:5 tells us to  “Offer the sacrifices of righteousness,  and trust the Lord.”   Sacrifice, that word rolls off our tongues so easily for some reason.  Read the definition and it may not fit so nicely on your tongue any more, “Destruction or surrender of something, for the sake of something else.”

That definition led me to the conclusion that Biblical motherhood is a sacrifice.  If we follow God’s plan and His instructions to us as wives and mothers, it is a full time job and our desires and dreams often must be put on hold for a season.  And guess what?  It’s a sacrifice. It is surrendering careers, volunteer work, manicures, and sometimes dreams…

It costs me, as a person, to stay home with my kids. I have sacrificed.  I have surrendered my career, extra income, personal freedom with time and activities.… I don’t do it because we can afford it or because it’s easier or because it feels good.  I do it because I believe this is the path the Lord has set me on.  Your surrender will look different than mine, but the reality is in motherhood, there is sacrifice.

After Jesus taught about the concept of the Vine and the branches, he said,

12 This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. 14 You are My friends if you do whatever I command you      John 15:12-14

I never really thought about applying these verses to motherhood.  But I believe they fit very nicely, don’t you?  Jesus commands us to love one another, which would include our children (as referenced in Titus 2:4). I looked up the Strong’s number for “lay down” in verse 13. 

lay down

Isn’t it amazing how these definitions apply to the things we have to do when we become a stay at home parent?  We set aside activities that used to be a priority.  We lay aside extra income. Perhaps we even lay aside certain clothing and limit or forego trips to the salon.  But, for better or worse,  we are also establishing and ordaining a future for our children through our actions and sacrifice.

I also clicked to take a peak at the Vine’s Expository Dictionary entry.  The first sentence reads, “to put, is used of “appointment” to any form of service.”  As moms we are certainly appointed into the service of the King, aren’t we?

Some days, I feel so blessed and delighted to be home with my children.  Other days, I struggle with the task set before me, even resenting it at times.  But knowing that what I am doing is a sacrifice to the Lord, that it is showing my children the “greatest love” by laying aside my wants and desires, has helped me to deal with some of these feelings.

In Old Testament times, sacrifices were made on a regular basis.  Beautiful little lambs were nurtured and given the utmost care… treated more like a pet than livestock.  Then, they were killed by your hand, or right in front of you….I’m sure that life didn’t go on as usual on the day of sacrifice.  I’m sure there was mourning and an emptiness for a time in the home, and hearts of the caregivers.  It was a time of sober reflection of sin and it’s consequences.  When we struggle against the flesh and begin sacrificing for others, it is a sober thing.  My career was something I planned, and worked towards, and treasured.  Giving it up was somber and at times I still feel a tinge of sadness when I pause to think, “What if…”

And that is Ok.  It is okay to recognize that I chose to sacrifice my career, my freedoms, my “me time” for motherhood.  It’s ok to realize that I have lost something.  It is somehow healing, for me, to acknowledge that loss.

What is not Ok is when I dwell on it, and it begins to stir up feelings of resentment in my heart.  It is not okay to allow all the things I gave up to become an idol that I shove in my family’s faces day after day reminded them of “all of given up for you!”

It is then that I must turn my thoughts toward this great high calling the Lord has give me, Motherhood.  With all of it’s sacrifices, it is teaching me, it is refining me, it is giving me so much more than any career or “me time” ever could.

And I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

CEL January 9, 2014 at 10:39 pm

Beautiful and thoughtful. Sometimes it is hard to get past the sacrifices.

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