A Fresh Look at Your Role as “Mom”: Devotion on Selflessness
My dear friend makes the best apple pie on the planet.
The kind of pie that everyone knows about.
The one people request as their birthday gifts.
The one when you see her walking towards you during school pick up, paper plate in hand, your heart skips a beat, hoping it’s there.
This pie recipe was handed down from her grandma, as only the best recipes can be. Because honestly, our grandmothers knew a whole heck of a lot more about life and baking than we’ll ever hope to. Just a side note: start listening to the grandmothers of this world.
It’s No Piece of Cake to Bake a Pie
Anyway, back to pie. This dear friend of mine actually opened her kitchen up to me one day, and not only taught me this world-changing recipe, but also the basics about baking.
Dry goes with dry, wet goes with wet, then you mix the two.
There’s a tool called a pastry blender. Whaaaat?
Make sure the water that goes into the crust is ice cold. Nobody knows why, you just do what your grandma says.
For a short time in her kitchen, I was a baking machine. I could make a pie for goodness sake! Baked goods don’t just get poured out of a box; they are created with love, care, patience, sacrifice.
But it is work! You only need to peel and slice apples for one pie before you realize, this takes time! Also, do I need some new vitamins because I’m sure my hands shouldn’t be cramping like this?!
So when your sweet friend gives you a plate with a slice of perfection that you now know took so much time and effort, it’s no small gesture.
But this crazy thing happens every time she sends a slice with me. I don’t even get home before all my hungry kids are asking for some.
I know what you’re thinking: “Duh Mom, hide that pie until you get home and lock yourself in the bathroom.”
Trust me, I want to. Here’s the thing: My life is one giant slice of apple pie.
Taste and See that The Lord is Good
I give a tiny bit to everyone, and by doing so, I honor God. I watch their little faces as they put a bite in their mouths, closing their eyes and entering heaven for one small second.
I’ll admit, most of the time, I just divide the piece up between them and let them have it all. I love to watch them savor it.
I know the goodness in those bites. I know what they are tasting because I’ve tasted it!
Guys, it’s the same goodness we experience with our Heavenly Father!
In Jeremiah 32:41 God says,
Oh how I will rejoice in them! Oh how I’ll delight in doing good things for them! Heart and soul, I’ll plant them in this country and keep them here.Jeremiah 32:41
God is referring to the Israelites who, bless their souls, could just not get it right! Disobedience, idol worshiping, taking one step toward God’s will, only to stumble four steps back.
But He never gave up. His love for the Israelites, and for us, in spite of every single way we fail, is endless.
And if I could think of one arena in life that reflects this relationship perfectly, it’s motherhood. It doesn’t matter what our kids do, the love remains.
If on one of those glorious pie days one of my children had been especially trying, it wouldn’t change the goodness I’d want for them to experience with a bite of pie.
The Slice of Life
Giving little bits of ourselves to those around us is sometimes daunting. It’s actually downright exhausting. That’s why I felt the importance of sharing this Devotion of Selflessness.
I can’t count the number of times I’ve been feeling really sorry for myself about how overwhelming my life is, and the FIRST thing I say is, “Well, I haven’t had a minute to myself ALL day!”
Spoiler alert, when you choose to have five kids you’re gonna need to get over yourself real quick!
And that’s ok, Friend. Because God will give you strength if you ask Him.
And God will give you patience if you ask Him.
And God will allow the sun to rise everyday so you can have a fresh start to sacrificially give yourself to those around you to honor Him.
God gave his SON for us. Jesus took on our sin so we could live eternally.
Death is abolished.
The king of kings died for ME.
Let that soak in when you are compelled to feel like you are giving too much of yourself to everyone else.
When you’re sure that your husband stopped noticing every meal you place before him and every lunch you packed for him. Or when you know your kids haven’t stopped to consider the clean, folded laundry they’re pulling out of their drawers to wear every day.
Stop listening to the lies of the world telling you to do what makes you happy.
“Live for you!” Or “Put yourself first!”
Instead, start listening to God who says,
Because of the sacrifice of the Messiah, his blood poured out on the altar of the Cross, we’re free people – free of penalties and punishments chalked up by all our misdeeds. And not just barely free, either. Abundantly free! He thought of everything, provided for everything we could possibly need, letting us in on the plans He took such delight in making. He set it all out before us in Christ, a long-range plan in which everything would be brought together and summed up in him, everything in deepest heaven, everything on planet earth.Ephesians 1:7 MSG.
It is an honor to care for not only my family, but my community and every other act of service God places before me.
Is it sometimes burdensome?
Does it sometimes go unnoticed?
However, my piece of pie, no matter how delicious it is, really is nothing compared to what was freely done for me.
A spirit of giving and loving others above ourselves is not only a good quality, it is literally what God made us to do.
To reflect Him, to be His image.
As you reflect on this Devotion on Selflessness, can I pray for you?
My prayer to you, Father God, is that we all have a spirit of giving. That you will continue to meet our needs so we can in turn be image-bearers of your glorious love and truth.
That the world does not harden our souls and we are able to open our hearts and minds to those close to us and also far away from us. That we can be a light to others through our service to them, and it is you who shines through.
And that any person reading this who does not know Jesus as their savior would get a taste of the goodness that is you, our God. We love you and pray this in your Son’s name. Amen.