Having just returned from our grandson’s graduation celebration, we were happy to discover he already has a “job.” It’s just a taste of what he will do in his lifetime, but nonetheless he will be learning some great skills and gaining practical knowledge. It got me thinking about my first experience getting a “real” job.
I’d just finished my two year college stint in business and was ready to dive into a profession I knew very little about. My first interview landed me a full time job with an advertising agency. At that time, advertising was a much different business than it is today – think the TV show, “Madman.” In my case, however, this was an old established agency, where all three of my bosses were approaching retirement and pretty much worn out from all those three martini lunches.
I got the job, because of my ability to take shorthand. However I had a hard time deciphering my own writing. When actually put to the test, I found myself asking my boss to give me the exact words again, so I would type it accurately. Like I said, these bosses were old and I was 20. After enduring my inability for about a month, they switched to a Dictaphone. Talk about old technology, right? Still, they were willing to accommodate me for my shortcomings. I learned from then on to respect my employers, even when I didn’t believe they deserved it.
My career in the advertising biz ended when the company went bankrupt – giving me a foreshadowing of how fickle the business world can be. One day you’re on top and the next, you’re just scraping by. Jobs came and went, but when we started planning our family, I was about to discover that I was completely unqualified for what lay ahead. No one has ever written a handbook which describes what will be required of you as a parent. Most of what you do is like flying on a wing and a prayer. Every chapter is different for each individual.
Someone once wrote a list of qualifications for motherhood. I can think of at least ten necessary requirements:
- SPIRITUAL GUIDE
- PRAYER WARRIOR
- DAY PLANNER
And that doesn’t even begin to cover all the side jobs that occur along the way. You will be faced with an unending loss of socks in the washing machine, dirty dishes in the sink, dust collecting in more places than under the bed or unexpected guests – like snakes, frogs, baby ducks and grasshoppers. You’ll scrub out the grass stains; bandage scuffed knee; spend more time in the ER than you thought you would; wash graffiti off the walls; wear clothes that require a built in burp cloth. You’ll make provide balanced meals – unless you pass McDonalds on the way home.
You’ll drive them to soccer practice, dance classes, basketball games in a blizzard, art and drama classes. All of this you do, knowing that your car may not make it to the next stop sign. You make sure they go to Sunday school and church, even if you spend more time in nursery, reprimanding them. You know that somewhere along the line, the Holy Spirit is working in those sweet little minds.
You struggle to save enough to send them to college – to clothe them – to insure them. You teach them to drive and pray that you’ve done the right thing by giving them the car keys. You learn to trust, believe and listen to them – which is probably some of the hardest stuff you will do as a parent.
This is one of the most important jobs we can do in this world. We’re responsible for what happens to society in the future, by building the kind of children who will eventually lead.
Never underestimate the job of Motherhood. It is a blessed gift from God. It will give you satisfaction beyond expectation. It is the only job that lasts for a lifetime, with no salary, but the benefits are amazing. Whether you’re a single mom, struggling to make ends meet – a mom in an abusive situation – one who didn’t have the benefit of a good mother – a woman who is longing to become a mom without success – one who has lost a child to death or addiction – or one who wonders how she ever got through it – God will bless you through this experience. Even in the toughest times, He will be at your side through the process. He knows what parenting is all about, because He had a Son that changed the world.