I read a simple, short blog post last night that resonated with me. Erin, a young mother who writes at Mamas Who Know, captures a profound truth:
The longer I am a mother, the more I realize that this job is way more for me than for my little girls. Inevitably, I am the one growing and learning as each day passes.
You know how sometimes you read something that just sticks? Erin’s post reminds me of something I read over a decade ago that was seared into my heart. I found it in an article in the Ensign (the English magazine for adults in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) entitled “Teach the Children” by Boyd K. Packer. His words had a significant and lasting impact on my view of motherhood.
[N]o service equals the exalting refinement which comes through unselfish motherhood. Nor does she need to forgo intellectual or cultural or social refinement. Those things are fitted in—in proper time—for they attend the everlasting virtue which comes from teaching children.
No teaching is equal, more spiritually rewarding, or more exalting than that of a mother teaching her children.
Over the past decade-plus, I have felt God’s Holy Spirit confirm this to me time and time again. As much as I enjoy “intellectual or cultural or social refinement” there is nothing that compares to the sweet moments and the refining process involved in motherhood. Part of that is because, as Boyd K. Packer taught, ““Thou therefore which teachest another, teachest thou not thyself?” (Romans 2:21).
And yet, because I do love intellectual and cultural and social and personal development, sometimes I let myself get distracted from the things that matter most. One of the reasons I am grateful for my membership in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is because of the regular reminders of how important it is to keep my priorities straight.
So thanks, Erin, for reminding me of the reality that as much as being a mother is for my children, it is also for me. After all, I, too, am just a child myself, learning how to grow up unto God.
What helps you keep your focus on things that matter most?