The role of being NEEDED twenty-four hours a day, for year upon year, for kid upon kid, upon kid.
I held. I rocked. I cleaned. I cooked. I read. I changed diapers. I taught little life skills throughout each day. I folded pile after pile of laundry. I played. I wiped noses. I filled needs everyday, all day.
Once in a while I got my needs met. Back then getting my needs met looked like balanced meals, a clean house, and well behaved, smart, cute-clothed kids.
I loved my kids but meeting their needs, so that my needs could be fulfilled, turned into an idol.
Then individual needs in my household began to change. And they didn't need me for those routine things anymore. And as I perceived their neediness of me lessoning two things happened:
1. I realized I loved them by serving them, but when those service opportunities changed I didn't know how to love them well.
2. Shepherding their hearts throughout each day was more important than creating a clean, sterile environment with a plethora of clean clothes and vegetables at every meal.
The idol of "being needed" required incineration in a holy fire.
I remember that May night years back when on my face, alone and desperate I prayed, ". . . throw me into the fire. May the flames burn up all that is left of me and leave only what is pleasing to you."
And in a few months I was feeling the heat.
I was desperate to learn to love well. In the year long refining process a transformation had begun.
C.S. Lewis characterized this refining process as the emerging of a "new man." He says, "They love you more than other men do but they need you less." He goes on to say, "We must get over wanting to be needed; in some goodish people, specially women, that is the hardest of all temptations to resist."
I want to need you and them less and less and need Christ more and more and more so that I can love you and them more and more.
We can only love others more when we let ourselves experience the love of Christ within.
We don't need to be needed, we need to need a Savior who sees our imperfections and loves us anyway so we can do the same to others.
I had to learn to let Christ's love go deep within so that in His filling I had something to pour into my own kids. It is an imperfect pouring most days, especially when I allow myself to become greater than He that is within me.
But it is those moments, those bitter, sweet, lemony goodness moments, that point me back to my desperate need for the fulfilling, once again, of Christ in me and I in Him.
P.S. I would love to read what is on your heart. If you are a blogger and post a comment I will be sure to return the blessings and visit you. If you are not a blogger but a friend, or a friend of a friend, thank you for being here. I appreciate you allowing me to share my heart with you through Inking the Heart!
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