Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Feeding the Five Thousand

Lately I've been feeling a bit overwhelmed with all the tasks that rest squarely on my shoulders -- important things like setting the tone for kindness in our home, preparing healthy meals, and teaching our children to become responsible with their chores, as well as small things like reminding my four-year-olds to use the potty before they have an accident, cleaning up after said accidents, making sure we don't run out of diapers or fruit, re-organizing every room in this house, picking up after all but one of my kids (we have one child who is just naturally neat. Weird, I know), hounding my kids to pick up after themselves, finding time to exercise daily, remembering not to bark at my husband when he doesn't appreciate me enough, and so on.

I've been reading a book called Celebration. I was touched last night by this story:

"My daughter Julia, who is expecting her tenth child, makes seven school lunches every morning. It is a job she has disliked so much it was hard for her to get out of bed, because the chore of making sack lunches is the first chore she faces every day. . . .

"Lunches were a chore for Julia that made every morning less than joyful until the Sunday that her eight-year-old son came home from church and had the following conversation with his mother.

"'What was your Primary lesson about today?' his mother asked.

"'Oh, you know,' young Weston said in an offhand way. 'It was that story that everybody knows. You know. The one about the time Jesus was walking around the Sea of Galilee and all these thousands of people came walking after him, and they listened to him for most of the day, and then it got hot and late and they were all tired and hungry and there wasn't any food at all.

"'Except, you know, for this one little boy, and his mother had remembered to pack his lunch, and so he had some loaves and fishes, and Jesus took them and fed all those people.'

"My daughter told me this incident, and there were tears in our eyes. 'His mother had packed his lunch.'

"'So you see, Mother,'Julia said, 'I have learned to like making lunches now, because I realize that when I'm feeding my children, I am feeding the five thousand—-and more. It makes me think of all the hundreds of people my children's lives will touch through the years, and I am making that possible by nourishing them as they grow up.'

"'Lunches are a whole new experience since I have thought of that unknown mother in Galilee who made a lunch for her little boy, and her son gave it to the Savior, and the Savior fed five thousand people with it.'"


Jacki said...

Wow- never thought of that! I get tired of the routine things too- but we just had a lesson in Relief Society that pointed out to enjoy the journey- every part of it, and that if I do then they won't be a 'chore' but more of a joy... working on that!

3in3mom said...

Such a good thought. I find it's that extra measure of love that allows things to be less of a chore. Thanks for this story--though I don't make sack lunches yet--I make them at home OVER and over and am glad we do have food to eat--etc.

I think President Monson said it best when he said that the laundry piles and fingerprints will quickly disappear. Though there are many hard things in the mean time I think that is what is getting me through right now. That soon the diapers will disappear and we will have a different age and stage and then they will be gone.

Such a wonderful persective in these times of motherhood.

working in it too--

Nickie said...

Thanks Cristina for this thought too. We do so much over and over, this is a nice way to look at routines.

I also thank you for your kind words the other morning at my blog.

Christine Rowley said...

I enjoyed reading this. Thanks! I linked to your blog from your signature on PYP.

Lisa6Kids said...

I have one 'neat' kid too and I find it funny that it's a boy that is neat. My girls are all MESSY.

Jason & Meradith Christensen said...

What a tender story. I know it gets hard feeling like the mundane tasks every day even make a difference. I told my husband I wasn't going to do his laundry anymore because I hate doing laundry and he doesn't appreciate it, and then when he kindly said, "that's ok, I'll just do it," and started doing it I started to cry and told him, "see?! you don't even need me to do what I do, you can do it yourself just as easily! How would you like if you told me you were gonna stop providing for the family and I said, 'no big deal, I'll do it myself,' would you feel very important??" So, I guess sometimes no matter how he responds to me, it's just the wrong way haha. Sometimes the everyday things that feel the most daunting. I sure admire you though and think you are doing a GREAT job!

Corine said...

...I don't know why I'm crying. :o


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