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I don’t know how many hours I have spent praying for my children. Those hours began long before they were born, and it is a mantle of prayer that will be one of my greatest joys all my days. I love my children, fiercely, with the deepest love. There isn’t a moment on any day that I will not choose to lay down my life for them. I love them, but in that I still have to remember that’s not my highest calling.

It’s hard to see isn’t it. It’s hard to see that we aren’t called to be mommas first. We aren’t called to be wives first. We are called first and foremost to be the daughters of God, and everything about how we love our families flows from that place. If we can see this, we will approach everything differently.

I am so guilty of taking my eyes off of this. I am so guilty of forgetting that I am chosen and loved so deeply that it is a joy to just sit with the Lord and read my Bible and pray. Being wife and momma are such huge, demanding callings, but God didn’t chiefly save me for them. He saved me for Himself that I might know and enjoy Him forever (mostly quoting John Piper here). Everything that comes in life after that moment of His choosing and my knowing God is affected by how I walk with Him.

There’s a reason for that. In the midst of ease or difficulty, I have to press into Him so that I may walk in the ministries He has given in me as someone who deeply loves the Lord the most. It is almost counterintuitive and definitely countercultural to live with your eyes fixed on Jesus and to remember to love Him most, but if we don’t we’ll lose who we are in Him and things will begin to win our affections more than Him.

I can say without a doubt the person that I was before the Lord was not patient enough for kids and all the crazy ups and downs of motherhood. Most often when I get impatient it’s because I’ve taken my eyes off of Him. When I stop looking at Him, I start being more like my flesh. He teaches me patience and every other fruit of the Spirit that sustains me and allows me to walk out these ministries with grace and a love like His. If I’m not looking to Him and clinging to Him with deepest affection, I will not do any of these things well. I will get frustrated and bogged down. I will feel defeated at times. He made me to know I need Him to do it His way, and the more I am satisfied in Him the more I experience joy in everything else.

Know that you are not just momma or wife. You are a daughter of a Father who loves and lifts you up. Know that you will be given many ministries and callings in your life, but none are more important than being near to the Lord that He might sustain and fill you. I do everything else better when I am pursuing the heart of God. I need Him in all things, at all times.

Today, celebrate the life God brought forth from you. Celebrate the ministry of motherhood. It is a beautiful day to remember what the Lord has done in making us mommas, but also never forget that you are still a daughter. Never forget who you are in Him is who you were always most meant to be.