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Devotionals

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Losing Your Sense of Entitlement | Gaining a servants heart


Having a servants heart toward my husband and son has been one of my goals for 2013 (that is not them in the photo above, btw). So far so good, though I do have my moments. But above anything in my little family, I want them to know how much I love them, and serving them is one of the greatest things I can do to show them that love.

I often hear other moms say things such as "I can't wait to get away from my kids this weekend" or "Wow, I just need a vacation, by myself!". And while having a girls night out or spouse and kid free getaway isn't a bad thing, it's the way that we say it that counts. "Getting away" isn't the only thing I'm talking about here -- no, it's more than that. It's the fact that many of us moms have this sense of entitlement. We think that because we do 'all of this stuff' for our families, that we are entitled to something or that we are owed something.

Wrong.
Though, again, there is nothing wrong with a little break ;) That is sometimes just necessary.

It's all in our attitude, the way we speak to our spouse and children when we feel like we've done all of these things for them for absolutely no reason or with nothing in return. Or, when we vacuum and mop the floor, only to enjoy it for 5 mins before someone drags their muddy boots across it. Yes, we can all relate to those feelings all too well! But look at this,
"Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others." [Philippians 2:1-4 NIV]
We are to value others above ourselves and not 'do things to get things', but do things expecting nothing in return -- have a servants heart, simply because it's what we're called to do. Even the Son of God came to serve rather than be served.

Think of it this way, if you have a hard time thinking about doing all of these things for your husband and children -- cooking meals, cleaning the house, folding laundry, play time, stopping whatever you're doing every 5 mins to answer the infamous "why" question from your toddler at least 20 times... --then think about doing these things for Jesus instead of your family.
"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving." [Colossians 3:23-24 NIV]
I don't know about you, but an inheritance from the Lord sounds mighty nice!

The other day while scrubbing the toilet before Bible study, my son said to me, "mommy, are you cleaning because Bible study is tonight?" I dropped the sponge and said "yes, I have to clean before everyone gets here."

And then, it hit me

I go out of my way every Tuesday evening to try and make the house a little presentable, and I joyfully do it (when I haven't had a crazy work week). Yet, when it comes to cleaning up after my husband, child or just cleaning the house in general, I huff and puff about it. I turned to my son and said, "you know, we should clean the house and pick up our toys everyday though, as if Jesus were coming to visit."

Voila!! It clicked.

As mothers, we often feel run down and ragged. We are tired, annoyed, and non-socialized at times. There's nothing wrong with going out to a girls night or getaway once a month, once a quarter, or for the extremely busy mom, once a year ;) There's nothing wrong with wanting time to yourself, and in fact, you should make alone time with God every single day. There's nothing wrong with feeling these things -- we should certainly not feel guilty for wanting to do them. The problem is we have the wrong attitude -- the feeling, the sense of entitlement that because we do all of these things, we are entitled to alone time, girls night out, and a new wardrobe. I'm sorry to say this but, we aren't. They are just perks that comes with life, not mothering and parenting.

This week (month and year, too!) I want to challenge all of us to serve our husbands and children joyfully. To lose our sense of entitlement and serve them simply because it is what we're called to do. We're not a door mat, no way. But we are called to serve in more than one way. We are an essential piece in our marriages and in our children's lives. We are our children's teachers, comforters, a listening ear, a shoulder to cry on, a kiss for their boo-boos. We are our husbands lover, strength, soul mate, friend, and care taker. And if nothing else, if we do nothing else except love them and serve them, we have gained so much more than we could ever imagine in this world, and in the next.

It's time to shed our sense of entitlement and embrace a wife and mother's serving heart -- to be self-controlled, busy at home, kind, reverent, and joyful!
"Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God." [Titus 2:3-5 NIV]

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