A Grander Vision

Sunrise through trees

Sometimes I get a bit lost in keeping up with the heaps of laundry, the never-ending dishes, the reading and the math worksheets (gosh, she's getting so old so fast!), and the kissing of boo-boos.

It's easy to get so focused on all of the smaller tasks that make up my roles as wife, mother and homemaker, that I often cease to see the forest for the trees, so to speak.

A couple of weeks ago, I began listening to the series "To Teach What is Good- Titus 2" by Carolyn Mahaney, and I found it so refreshing and encouraging. You see, over the course of this past month I've been feeling rather exhausted and overwhelmed by some stressful circumstances, challenging relationships, and duties I was struggling to accomplish. The fact that I wasn't sleeping well and was caring for another little boy probably didn't help.

In fact, I realized that I had gotten so worn out and discouraged that I had even begun to listen to some of the less discerning and doctrinally-incorrect voices around me, taking worldly advice and applying it to the struggles in my heart. For a couple of days, I allowed myself to think that I somehow "deserved better" and needed to make more time for myself and a few other thoughts that I know were less than true.

Listening to this CD the other day with my daughter, my heart was drawn back to this beautiful truth:

The way that I live out my life, in the context of my marriage, my mothering and my home, is a representation to a lost world of the Gospel of Jesus Christ!

(If you're unsure of what I mean by the Gospel, you can learn more about it here)

Listen to Carolyn's words in the corresponding chapter of Feminine Appeal
(the book upon which the CD series is based):

Although our daily actions might not be covered on the evening news, our lifestyle speaks loudly to those around us. How sobering it is to realize that our behavior has the potential to discredit the gospel. But how exciting it is to think that we can actually commend the gospel!

As verse 10 (of Titus 2) says, we can "adorn" the gospel with our lives. To "adorn" means to put something beautiful or attractive on display- like placing a flawless gemstone in a setting that uniquely shows off its brilliance. The gospel is like the most valuable of jewels. It is the pearl of great price.

Make no mistake, by adorning the gospel, we are not enhancing or improving it. The gospel cannot be improved! But by cultivating the feminine qualities listed in Titus 2, we can present the gospel as attractive, impressive, and pleasing to a watching world.

It doesn't take away the tiredness, or make some of the circumstances any easier, but it renews my passion to do what I have been called to do, and to do it well, through His grace. I am encouraged to continue on, realizing that all the "little" things I do day in and day out have a much bigger purpose- to present the gospel as more beautiful and attractive to a watching world!

I can't do it on my own, but I can press in to Him and lay down the burdens that I have been carrying at His feet. I know that He alone can and will give me the strength and ability to do it all in a way that glorifies Him and magnifies His gospel, without buying in to the lie of "me-ism". He created me for these roles, to serve my husband and family, through all sorts of circumstances and changing seasons, and He will equip me to do it. Only in Him can I find the rest that I am longing for.

Isn't it good to be reminded of the calling that we have, to present the Gospel through the roles and the work that God has given each of us? How has God been speaking to you lately, and how has He been bringing encouragement and refreshment for the challenges that you are experiencing?

About Stephanie Langford

Stephanie Langford has a passion for sharing ideas and information for homemakers who want to make healthy changes in their homes, and carefully steward all that they've been given. She has written three books geared to helping families live more naturally and eat real, whole foods, without being overwhelmed, without going broke and with simple meal planning. She is the creator of Keeper of the Home.

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Comments

  1. Your post has blessed me. :)

  2. Thanks for a great post. I’ve been thinking about reading Feminine Appeal for a while and you’ve encouraged me to do so. I plan to add it to my summer reading list!

  3. Encouraging, truthful words! The farther into “Me-ness” I go, the more resentful, angry, and “poor me” I get. The closer my walk with Christ, the farther I get from the “Me-ness”. You would think I would never wander away, but it is amazing how we can get off track and lose focus. What a blessing that He is always there to receive us back! Thank you for this post!!

  4. Thanks so much for this post. Right now I’m 29 weeks pregnant with my fourth, homeschooling the older two, dealing with an impatient two-year-old and trying to take care of ministry responsibilities at church and keep up at home. Then I came down with a cold this week. Prime pity part circumstances. I can get really grumpy. I needed the reminder to serve selflessly represent the gospel well, especially to my children.

  5. I’ve also found encouragement in Carolyn’s writing. I’ve been having a rough time lately just figuring things out and am trying to keep the right mindset while figuring it all out.
    God has brought me encouragement lately by giving me two wonderful gifts from others that I can really use to help me in my life, that were SO unexpected and SO helpful to me in my role as a wife and mother.

  6. So strange that they weren’t working! Sorry, Tami! They’re just fine now, so go ahead and give them a try.

  7. i’m unable to get the links to work! could you check them please? thanks!!

  8. Hi I really like your blog. So much to read. I will be browsing around for a while. Have a blessed day…hugs

  9. Wow, I needed that, after spending this very morning wallowing in my own self-pity. How encouraging it is to know that our work done in obscurity is every bit as important to God (Psalm 78:70). What a wonderful post! Thank you for the reminder.

  10. Yes, that is so me too right now. I’ve been focussing on ‘poor me’ and not on what I need to be doing. Being a wife and mother. Right now, that is what I have on my path and I’d better give it my best effort because time is short.

    One thing I struggle with is comparing myself to others and trying to keep up with that, rather than what God has given me in my family and in my own individual personality.

    I really liked your post a few days ago about “doing the next thing”. There are things I wish I could or would rather be doing. Or, I have so many things bogging me down, I just don’t know where to start. So I’ve been telling myself to just do the next thing. Don’t worry about tomorrow, just do today. Being 8 months pregnant, this is a good thing. Yesterday it was a game of Monopoly with my kids. Right now it’s folding a mound of laundry. But it won’t get done unless I start right? :-)

    Have a good day!

  11. My husband just bought me several of Carolyn’s books from the Feb. sale at SGM. I have been so encouraged by them, and cried thru some of the chapters. My attitudes of late haven’t been exactly stellar and I have been more focused on myself than I needed to be. The books were just exactly what I needed–a wonderful Godly, older woman to come along beside side me with practical, Biblical wisdom.