Sarah Parham

Progress amidst laundry

So, as I mentioned, all these thoughts I’ve had on progress have come over loads and loads, and loads of laundry.  So about that laundry…it’s daily, it’s constant, it’s the opposite of progress!  So, while I can have all these great, lofty  (and often cynical) thoughts about progress.  It all means nothing if I can’t apply it to my daily life. I have decided that progress is ultimately God’s glory, so what does giving God glory look like in my daily life?  Perhaps it means that I’m supposed to quit everything I’m doing now and go be a missionary in some third world country.  Or at least I should spend most of my time doing something meaningful here in my city.   But each time I try, I find that I am loosing something valuable right here in my own home.

I clearly remember reading a book called “Desperate” by author Sarah Mae (who stole my name btw).  In it she said that God is not disappointed in us for spending our days changing diapers (or doing laundry).  He isn’t wishing we were doing something greater, which is often the feeling I have and transfer onto my image of God.  Someone has to do these daily  things, and it is our duty.

Another dear friend enlightened it differently for me.  She was telling me about taking her grandmother grocery shopping and how she had something of a sour attitude about it.  Then she realized that if she were volunteering her time to take some old lady from the nursing home shopping, she would have left that event feeling on top of the world like she had just done some grand thing for the kingdom.  What self sacrifice!  But since it was her own grandmother, it seemed more like duty than sacrifice.  I thought to myself as she was telling me this, woah, I do the same with my kids.  If I spent a day taking care of the needs of some orphans in a remote place, I would feel like I had just done a great thing for the kingdom.  I will have shown them God’s love. (cue angelic music here) That’s what missionaries do right?  But because it is MY kids, it’s just my duty, not a sacrifice that should be celebrated.  But really, if I didn’t do these things for my kids, they would be orphans!  So now, in my mind I consider myself a missionary to these poor Parham orphans.  It brings meaning to the mundane.  Why do we do that?  Why do we separate duty and sacrifice?  Our ‘duty’ can be our sacrifice when done for the glory of God.

The only other place we see duty and sacrifice put together in this way is in military terms.  The idea is that these people have given up their lives to serve something greater.  Now it is their duty to follow their new leader, not their own agenda.  We as Christians have given up our lives to follow God, to live for His glory.  It is a great sacrifice!  God never said it is not a sacrifice.  In fact, Jesus tells us to count the cost of following him.  There is a cost. But there’s a reason we chose to follow Him.  We know there is nothing greater.  There is nothing else worth living for.  Only God’s glory!

This same principle applies to any area of life.  Are you a nurse?  Care for your people as if you were working in a clinic in Africa.  Do it for God’s glory, not for the paycheck!  Are you a teacher?  Again, do it for God’s glory, not for the paycheck.  Give glory to God!  Whether you work, or stay at home, whether it feels meaningful or not, do it as unto the Lord!  It is all for His glory!!

Comment (1)

  1. Debra

    Reminds me of a line in a song about giving God the “sacrifice of praise”, whichI have never really thought was much of a sacrifice. But, do I always take the time to do it? Not as I would like. This is good, Sarah.


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