All our dreams can be focused on the most important work in front of us.
I looked around the other day and thought, “Is this literally my biggest goal right now?”
Can you guess what it is? What do I see as a big accomplishment worthy of applause (or a piece of chocolate I don’t have to share)?
To wash, dry, fold and put away a load of laundry on the same day.
Just one load. I mean, let’s be realistic.
But my next thought was how small my dreams have gotten since motherhood. I am a fairly ambitious, driven person. Before my first son was born, I had big dreams to chase. Before my second son was born, I just knew I could be that mom. The high-achieving, how-does-she-do-it-all woman, making big things happen while rocking parenthood.
Today, I’ve traded the lofty goals for laundry goals. Instead of chasing career goals, I’m chasing preschoolers. I’m tempted to wonder if this is okay? Does this make me lazy? Does this mean I’m not as capable as I thought? Does this mean my life is as insignificant as I feared?
In a world that tells us to dream bigger and hustle harder, what if trading our big dreams for smaller ones actually means we’ll do the most important thing?
As I was cleaning up the kitchen after lunch, listening to my kids play in the next room, I was tempted to grumble about how much I had to do for them. How I often feel so alone taking care of everything and everyone. It was in the moment where I was tempted to complain that the Lord gently brought to mind Jesus’ words in Matthew 25:40, “Whatever you do for the least of these, you did for me.”
By serving our children, cleaning up messes, wiping noses, making meals, and kissing boo-boos, we are serving the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords.
How encouraging to think that our most mundane tasks have great significance in God’s Kingdom. Because our young children who cannot eat, get dressed, go to the bathroom, or communicate without our help certainly qualify as “the least of these.” When we take care of our little ones, we take care of Jesus—a task we would say is incredibly important.
What if serving the Lord in this season meant using your gifts and your talents to serve your family? When we flip the script that tells us we should chase our biggest dream, we might find that we are actually doing just that. Who knows what the future holds for you, or what time you’ll gain as your children grow up to accomplish everything you’re capable of. But right now, you’re doing important work.
I believe if Jesus was standing next to you as you grab a clean shirt out of the dryer, He would say: You have permission to trade lofty goals for a humble reality. You are not less-than. You are not unambitious, incapable, boring, or destined to be left behind. You are right where you’re meant to be. You are serving your family and serving your Savior simultaneously. God is so proud of the unseen work you are doing! Your Father swells with pride as He watches you do mundane task after mundane task. As you use the gifts He gave you in humble, important, Kingdom-building ways that few will notice.
Today, let’s rally together and encourage our stay-at-home-mom friends. Rather than feeling guilty for our lack of achievement, let’s believe that even the smallest achievement as a mom is worth celebrating! Even if all we can confidently say at the end of the day is, “We made it to bedtime!” We can remember that we served Jesus all the way ‘til bedtime.
Callie Clayton writes to encourage others (and remind herself) that it’s possible to experience God right where you are. She enjoys teaching the Bible to teenagers, having good conversation over meals she didn’t cook, and baking all the chocolate desserts. Embracing her role as a boy-mom to three little ones, she and her husband are worn out, but loving the adventure of parenthood.