When my husband went out of town for a weekend I took all kinds of opportunities to treat myself, and what that basically means is I spent an entire day at home on the couch in my pajamas with books and magazines and a pizza and movie combination on Saturday night, because there are some things you never outgrow and because for better or for worse, we’ve not yet been gifted with children.
As I was reading one of these magazines, I saw a phrase that kind of stopped me in my tracks, The author was talking about famous people who do “big things for Jesus.” And while I promise I didn’t mean to think it, I just couldn’t help but wonder…
Can we do big things for God?
When I was in my 20s I truly believed it was possible for me to do awesome things. In other words, I thought it was possible for my life to be cooler than others. And I did all sorts of things that on the surface looked pretty big. I worked with celebrities and hot “up-and-comers” and I made phone calls that determined who would be the next featured artist on MySpace (I told you this was a long time ago, right?). I saw websites and bloggers write about the things that I told them were cool, I earned a gold record that’s buried in the back of one of my closests today, and I helped launch a big music festival that’s still going all these years later. (Please stick with me, because I promise this isn’t all about me.)
And all the while I was striving for more.
When serious illness hit it brought my world to a halt, all of a sudden I was way less concerned with what I could build with my own two hands and way more concerned with my own inner poverty. I realized nothing was as cool as needing or having a relationship with God. In the years that followed He opened my eyes to new ways of seeing, doing, and being and do you know what rocked my world almost more than anything else?
Stay at home moms.
Stay at home moms were the ones who taught me that God doesn’t need our huge and our big to change the world. He just needs small things done with great love and a heart fully surrendered to His.
I was desperately spinning my wheels trying to build my own life up, while these women modeled what it was to lay down their lives and let God build something beautiful instead.
I am not yet a stay at home mom (though my heart’s still holding onto hope), but when I read this piece about doing big things for God my mind automatically went to the women I know. For a few months I was a moderator of an online group for Christian women with chronic illness, and everyday I spoke with women who pushed through pain and fatigue to serve their families. I spoke with women who battled mental illness while raising three kids. I watched my sister walk away from a career far more successful than mine to teach 2 years olds how to sing “Jesus Loves Me,” and I don’t think any of them is doing less for Jesus. I think Jesus is doing beautiful things through them.
I think we’re all just men and women sitting at the foot of the cross, playing our parts in a much, much bigger story.
One of the things I love about walking through the names that God has for us is that it reminds us that God sees things so much differently than we do. He’s not as concerned with the outward appearance. And whether our acts of obedience, faith, and love are seen by a whole lot of people or just a few, He calls us gifted and chosen and enough in Him.
“The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” – 1 Samuel 16:7 (NIV)
“So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. – Matthew 6:2 (NIV)
linking up with Jack of All Trades at A Harvest of Blessing.