I really HATE Facebook on days like Mother’s Day. All those pictures of beautiful families showing their moms such gushing appreciation with all the flowers and the pretty church dresses and the meals out or the meals in, cooked while mom sits in her chair and doesn’t lift a finger…
Mine was McDonald’s take-out eaten in the car on the way home from church so that my husband could get back to work on time.
There were no pictures of me or gushing about me. I got the obligatory “Happy Mother’s Day, Mom” from each of the kids. The same from the hubby, except his included a kiss.
No flowers. No breakfast in bed. No extra effort to make me feel valued and appreciated.
And I scrolled through FB and had a meltdown.
Maybe that sounds shallow, but it’s the real me. I want to feel loved and appreciated just like the next gal — probably MORE than the next gal, actually. I want people to think I’m wonderful — and I want them to tell me about it. Frequently. :-)
But if I don’t get frequently, I’ll settle for the occasional special day when everyone else is saying it. But often even that doesn’t happen.
I think they do appreciate me; we’re just not a picture-taking, every-little-holiday-noticing, gushing family. Probably my own fault, actually. I grew up before FB and didn’t realize it was going to become de rigueur to splash your life in front of the world on every possible occasion. I didn’t train them for that. I wasn’t raised to be that myself.
But there’s more that’s my own fault.
“Even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45).
OUCH. That’s it, right there. If I’m having a meltdown from lack of appreciation on Mother’s Day — or any day — then it’s because I’m wanting to be served. Not to serve.
I’m not wanting to consider others as more important than myself (Philippians 2:3). I’m wanting to be the important one.
I’m thinking I have a right to be, in a word, SELFISH.
Difficult to swallow, maybe even harsh? Very possibly. Especially when our culture says we “deserve” to be served and consider ourselves important for a day.
But still the God-honest truth.
Don’t get me wrong; this is not a slam against the moms out there who received great Mother’s Days. I still want one myself.
But if I don’t get one, when all around me are getting theirs, the ONLY place to find true comfort is in Jesus. To look at His example and remember my job is to be like Him.
To stop worrying and fretting about many things and just be Mary, sitting at His feet, resting in HIS love. He appreciates me. He would gush about me — and does, in His Word. “I have loved you with an everlasting love…”
There is a bigger picture than just one day. There is eternity. When my eyes are on myself and my temporal circumstances instead of on Him and His grand plan, meltdowns will occur.
Dear Mom who was disappointed on Mother’s Day — have you been in His Word enough lately? Have you filled yourself with understanding of His love and graciousness to you? Are you looking for the blessings, rather than focusing on the hardships?
I know you’re out there. I know I’m not the only one who wishes just ONCE someone would treat you like a queen for a day, or even a few hours. We don’t post on Facebook, do we, because we don’t want anyone to see our frustration and bitterness.
Perhaps God wants us to run to Him and Him alone. Perhaps He knows what is best for US — and right now that means living without the flowers and the wonderful words.
Perhaps He wants us drinking in HIS Words to slake our thirst.
Those Words say that He will withhold no good thing from us (Psalm 84:11), which means if He is withholding something, it’s because it would not be good in our lives. Crazy and difficult to accept, isn’t it, that those gushing words and special treatment we so long for might actually be harmful to us — but He knows that, and in His love He is drawing us to depend on Himself instead of on momentary joys.
I don’t have a foolproof solution. Thinking of digging deep to serve others when I don’t feel appreciated for it — especially on a day when I am “supposed” to be appreciated and shouldn’t “have” to serve — is not an easy thing. I’m still crying about it, actually.
But God calls us to no less than what will glorify Him. And being like Jesus, the penultimate unappreciated Servant, glorifies Him VERY much.
Not being a martyr, but serving from a heart filled with His love and purpose. Shored up with His Truth — not the world’s.
Is Mother’s Day a bad thing? Of course not. But for some of us it can be a very difficult thing.
Next year I’m not getting on Facebook that day. Just not gonna do it, wouldn’t be prudent. I can’t expect my family to change, and I don’t need the inevitable comparing that will steal my joy.
But hopefully by then I’ll have a better grasp of where a true sense of being valued comes from. Hopefully I will be more shored up in the Word and have closer to an eternal view. Hopefully I can face the day with less longing for special treatment and more a desire to give of myself to those around me. To be like Jesus.
Which words do I want to hear the MOST?? “Well done, good and faithful servant.”