"...holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day of Christ
that I have not run in vain or labored in vain."
I think of the calling on my life, and on all our lives as moms (and really as women, whether we have our own children or not), to "labor in birth again until Christ if formed in our little children." (Galatians 4:19). And I go on to read Philippians 4:17:
"Yes, and if I am being poured out as a drink offering on the sacrifice and service of your faith, I am glad and rejoice with you all."
I am daily exhausted as a mom, not just physically but spiritually as I have great concern for my children's spiritual life and growth in Christ. The enemy constantly bombards me and my proneness to wander leaves me vulnerable to doubts and fears. I fight depressing thoughts and daily am faced with the "old man"- to put her off and to put on Christ regarding the training of my kids to know Christ. It is a race of endurance I'm called to run, not a sprint. It's real labor, not a day spa job!
And then my eyes drift up the page of my Bible to Philippians 4:12-13:
"Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only,
but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who works in you both to will and do for His good pleasure."
As a mom, I know how this feels, and I'm sure you do too! I say, "Boys, get dressed." I walk away. They play. They argue... but they don't get dressed. I say, "Boys, don't just obey mommy when I'm with you. Obey me when I'm away too! Then you show that you obey mommy for Jesus, not just cause mommy's standing here." And most of the time I get a ? look back! Ohhhhhh, laboring!! But it's not in vain!
Oh how my prayer is that my sons would obey the Word of God by the Spirit as they follow Jesus, not only in my presence, but in my absence also.
Praying for us as moms and for our children,