As we grow in the wisdom and knowledge of the Lord, we will more efficiently be able to keep in step with the Spirit (Galatians 5:25). When we walk in the power of the Spirit, He produces the Fruit of the Spirit in our lives. How do these Fruit apply to everyday motherhood? Let us begin with the first Fruit of the Spirit: love.
“Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13. This sounds like a no-brainer, right? Without a question or a moment of hesitation, I would willingly die in place of my children. I would jump in front of a bullet, push them out of the path of an incoming car, or take their place as a hostage. In worst case scenarios, I would swiftly and surely remove my children from peril even if it meant giving up my life.
I would sacrifice my life, but would I sacrifice my phone? Would I sacrifice my convenience? Would I sacrifice my time? It is easy to think, “Absolutely! Anything for my child!” What about when they are nagging you for the umpteenth time that hour and you have the choice to answer calmly, again, or snap back in frustration? I would die for my children, but am I willing to die to self to meet their needs? What about when they ask for another snack when I just sat down after taking care of everything for everyone?
I would sacrifice my life, but would I sacrifice my phone? Recently, I was convicted (again) of my own personal screen time. Have you noticed that on your Facebook settings you can see how much daily time you have spent on the app? I was SHOCKED. My mindless scrolling and obsessive checking of notifications added up to hours. Hours that could have been spent shoulder-to-shoulder, on eye level with my boys. Hours I could have spent doing chores or writing or reading or working on BSF or any other number of things I feel are competing for my time and attention. When I feel like I do not have enough time to accomplish everything, do you know how I respond to minor interruptions from my boys? It is explosive, it is unreasonable, and it is entirely unloving. By immersing my attention in screen time, I am robbing myself of time, adding unnecessary stress to my schedule, and making allowance for unloving actions and comments towards my boys. “But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.” Romans 13:14.
How great is my love for my children actually? How great is my love for them practically? Am I making the excuse of having unconditional love even void of unconditional like? Am I satisfied with unconditional love and not attenpting to create a loving relational atmosphere? When those moments of conditional like come around, is it because of a sin issue or because I am merely inconvenienced or annoyed? Even if a sin issue needs to be addressed, am I acting in love and pointing them to Christ or am I acting in selfishness and pride with the desire for them to just do things my way?
Our purpose is to bring glory to God by serving Him faithfully in the missions He assigns. Motherhood is our mission. Motherhood is our calling. To teach and train these little humans in the knowledge and understanding of the Lord. God is love (1 John 4:8). Love is our baseline. Am I willing to live in sacrificial love every moment of every day in my own home towards my own family? Do my actions display the Fruit of the Spirit: Love to my boys? Greater love has no mom than this, that she lay down her phone for her kids.