I attended a Women of Faith conference last month with some close friends. Over the course of the weekend and in between the other happenings, Deborah Joy Winans, performed monologues/sketches that would help set the tone for certian parts of the event. I've been to a few of these conferences so there wasn't a lot of "new" stuff that spoke to my heart... except for the very last drama.
Deborah Joy told a "story" of a character who was the first among her friends to have a baby. While she stayed at home caring for children her friends would be on world travels, experiencing life and new adventures! She longed for the same excitement and sense of freedom. Months and years went by. Her children wouldn't listen to her when she spoke. Her husband wouldn't say "Thank you!". She thought to herself, "Do they realize who makes them their lunches? Who does their laundry? Who does their dishes? Who drives them everywhere? Who makes this house a home?" Feeling at an all time low, a friend returned from Europe and gave the mom a book about castles. In the front page, her friend scribbled something about her work as a mother mattering because she is building castles now for rest of the world to see later. Confused about what that means...?
Have you ever wondered if all your mommy work ever gets noticed? Do you think people care? Do you wonder if 100 years from now, people will even remember you and all you've done for your children and family? Do you long for a little praise and thanksgiving for ALL you do? If you've been a mom for 3 months or 40 years, you know the feelings I'm talking about. It's this deep longing to be appreciated and recognized for the work you do day AND night. Being a stay at home mom, I often wonder if people realize all that I do to care for Amelia. Or do they think I have an "easy job" since I'm staying home...
The reality about this book in the story is that as she flipped through it and looked at the photos, there was hardly one castle where the builder was known. These castles were 100+ years old! They are these beautiful, tall structures that people marvel over. People travel from afar just to catch a glimpse of them. They're strong and steadfast where they were built. Somebody a very long time ago spent countless hours, days, months, years!! building these castles. I'm sure the builders shed blood, sweat, and tears over theses works of art. And all you see in a book is "builder unknown". How fair is that?
Isn't motherhood so much like that? At first, I was discouraged by the thought of this. But the amazing thing is that my Father in heaven knows what I'm building. He knows what you're building. God sees our labors of love. And that work is eternal. If in 100+ years, when I'm gone from this world, my grandchildren and great-grandchildren love Jesus, I'd say that all of my work was worth it. And it doesn't even matter if I get credit for it! God is the one working through me. I do appreciate a "Thank you!" and "Good job!" from my husband now and then. Or a "Wow! You do a lot!" from friends. I think we need that as mothers! But first and absolutely foremost, we need to find our worth and identity in what GOD says about us and our work.
Continue building castles, my mommy friends. We may be "unknown" someday, but our legacy will tell of the great works we're doing now. ♥