Motherhood and Homemaking
feel like I've wasted my life," said one mother whose last child had recently left home. "I've given the best years of my life to bringing up my family while other women have been making a career for themselves. And what do I have to show for all my efforts? Nothing."
I think that many women these days feel the same way. They have been influenced to believe that their role as mothers or homemakers isn't as important or as fulfilling as is a place in the business world.
Are their feelings justified or not?
First, one answer to this question depends on your attitude—which is how you feel about your role and responsibilities.
No matter what your work is, if you feel it is insignificant and distasteful you will be bored and depressed by it.
For instance, could anything be more boring than sweeping and cleaning floors every day of your life? Murray Spangler was a custodian in a department store in Canton, Ohio, and he didn't think so. Even though the dust badly affected his breathing, Spangler didn't leave. Instead, he decided to work out a better way to clean floors. "Instead of stirring up dust with a broom," he thought, "why not suck it up?"
The result? He developed a crude but workable vacuum cleaner. He then decided to manufacture it with the financial backing of a friend. The friend's name just happened to be H. W. Hoover.
To reject our role or even have mixed feelings about it is to invite frustration. Even normally enjoyable tasks can thus become a burden. However, the opposite is also true. When we accept our role, even dull tasks can become meaningful.
To do this we need to stop listening to the opinions of others and see the importance of what we are called to do. Every person's work is important—from that of school teacher to student; from house builder to homemaker; from scientist to farmer; from ditch digger to doctor; and from mother to manager.
However, there are few jobs, if any, that carry as much significance as that of being a mother. She, more often than anyone else, influences and shapes the character of children who affect generations to come. Furthermore, the role of motherhood is designed by God Himself, which makes it nothing less than a divine calling.1
Third, fulfillment is to have specific goals.
What keeps me enthusiastic about my job more than my work is my goals. To imagine any job without drudgery is pure fantasy.
5. All articles on the ACTS International website are by Richard (Dick) Innes unless otherwise noted.
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