As moms, we can feel like our entire life is one of lowliness. We wipe bums and clean snotty noses. We hold hair back while children puke and scrub dried fruit from our floors. Meanwhile, our hair is greasy from day five of dry shampoo and we smell like old food and sweat. And we aren’t sure what that muddy, green stain on our pants is from.
Pride tiptoes into our hearts as we scrub crayon off the walls. I’m better than this, we think as we tie up another bundle of dirty diapers. I was meant for more. We forget that becoming lowly is one of the many ways we are called to image our Savior.
A Lowly Servant
Jesus was born into lowliness. A plain young girl carried Jesus and mothered him (Luke 1:48). The Creator of the universe was swaddled and laid in a feeding trough (Luke 2:7). Mere shepherds heard of the birth of the Messiah first and came to worship him (Luke 2:8–17). The Owner of the world was born to a family too poor to offer the traditional sacrifice of a lamb, so they gave two turtledoves instead (Lev. 12:6–8; Luke 2:22–24). As Paul wrote, “Though he was in the form of God, [he] did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross…” (Phil. 2:6–8).
Are we willing to be this humble? To become this lowly in motherhood? Or do we believe we are always entitled to something better, something more than we already have? Are we too prideful to do unnoticed and embarrassing tasks? Do we believe we are too good for our stained clothes? Do we spend more time trying to be noticed and esteemed for our hard work than worshiping our Savior, who was crushed and spit upon?
Fellow mom, are you willing to be a lowly servant like your Savior?
The Lowly Path of Our Savior
As moms, our hard work often goes unrecognized. We receive no accolades for a pile of folded t-shirts and a child tucked in bed. So we seek notice. We strive for our posts online to receive more attention. Or we frantically keep our home spotless so visitors will gush at our cleanliness. Someone needs to notice us and give us glory. Otherwise, is it really worth it?
While Jesus spent time with the Pharisees and performed grand signs for thousands to see, he also did the lowly work that no one would see. Jesus knew his calling, and he knew his Father’s gaze was the only one that mattered. He welcomed the little children when others pushed them away as unimportant and he washed the feet of the disciples. He spoke with the woman at the well who was an outcast in society, healed lepers who weren't allowed inside the city grounds, and spent time with the unaccepted Samaritans. Jesus chose the path of servanthood. And he calls each of his followers to go and do likewise.
Image Your Savior Through Humble Service
Jesus knew his purpose and he knew where to set his gaze. As believers, we can become caught up in chasing our identity and purpose. We often forget how God established our identity as his daughters through the work of Christ and put us in a particular place at a particular time. We find our purpose and identity as moms not by striving after a specific glory we believe we were destined for but by looking in our Bibles and at the work God has placed before us. He draws good and pleasant boundary lines for us, and we glorify him when we gratefully live within them rather than peeking over the edge at the seemingly abundant gardens of our neighbor.
Fellow moms, we can fight and aimlessly strive for our own glory, or, like Jesus, we can humbly give up our glory and our desires to serve and love God where he has placed us. The world often tells us we were meant for greater and better things, but God created us for the very place he has us right now. We can either battle with God for glory, or we can humbly accept the position he has called us to at this moment: to image our Savior by pouring ourselves out for our families.
Meet the Author
Lara d’Entremont is a wife and mom to three from Nova Scotia, Canada. Lara is a writer and learner at heart. She's always trying to find time to scribble down some words or read a book. Her desire in writing is to help women develop solid theology they can put into practice—in the mundane, the rugged terrain, and joyful moments. Find more of her writing at laradentremont.com.