I like New Year’s Resolutions, mainly because I like a challenge and I enjoy setting goals for the New Year. With every January, I tend to evaluate how I’m spending my time and planning my days. Each New Year, I attempt to figure out how to maximize my waking hours to get as many things done as I can within twenty-four hours. Then, last year, I realized I was viewing my time all wrong. I was ending my days weary and frustrated as I would review my to-do list and see more things to do and fewer items accomplished and crossed off the list! What was worse, I had very little joy in my God given roles as a wife and mom. I was so focused on what I thought I needed to do, that I lost sight of planning my days and my time with eternity in mind.
Making the Moments Count
I am a stay-at-home mom to two small children—an energetic four-year-old boy and a very opinionated two-year-old girl. My days are often filled by playing on the floor, attempting to keep up with laundry, preparing meals, washing dishes, cleaning a house that stays unclean, wiping away tears (sometimes even my own), sitting in the preschool car pick up line, and snuggling while reading books. Some days feel mundane and anything but impactful for the Kingdom of God. Then, a friend challenged me to look at my time and daily tasks with an eternal perspective and to see beauty in moments that appear mundane.
We all know that our days are fleeting and our time here is short. We sense our days running by us, especially at the start of a new year. It seems like the last year only just started and here we are beginning another. Moses knew this reality as well. In Psalm 90, he wrote “Our days may come to seventy years, or eighty, if our strength endures; yet the best of them are but trouble and sorrow, for they quickly pass, and we fly away” (vs. 10). He asked God for an eternal perspective on his days. “O Lord, teach us to number our days that we may have a heart of wisdom” (verse 12).Moses knew time is fleeting and wanted to use each moment wisely.
Eternal Perspective in the Mundane
So I took my friend up on her challenge. As a stay-at-home mom, much of my time is spent in the same physical space as my family. I often wondered where and when I would make an eternal impact and assumed I would have to wait until my stay-at-home days were over. I soon realized I was thinking incorrectly about my time. Instead of waiting to make an eternal impact outside of the home I had to realize that I was and am making an eternal impact from inside my home every day.
For me, the most mundane task is washing dishes. It is my least favorite activity, especially at the end of a long day. My friend challenged me to either pray or memorize Scripture while washing the dishes. She assured me that my mindset about this mundane task would quickly change if I captured these moments for eternal purposes. I followed her advice and made a weekly prayer calendar and wrote out individuals to pray for each day of the week. I made Scripture memory cards and taped them to my window where I would look up and see them multiple times during the day.
I began to discipline myself to pray and memorize God’s Word while washing dishes. This may not sound life changing to you—but for me, this was life giving! My rotten attitude at the kitchen sink started melting away. I soon realized, I could use this time to pray for the nations. I added countries to my prayer calendar to pray for the Gospel to be known around the world. I also prayed for missionaries serving in those countries, that they would be used mightily for the Kingdom of God.
Eternal Mindsets Make a Difference
What amazed me the most about these very small, practical changes was that they began to spill over into other daily tasks. Folding the laundry became an opportunity to pray for my children and my husband. There’s nothing like folding those small children’s clothes and realizing they won’t be this small much longer. Or praying for my sweet husband to be salt and light and to put on the Gospel as he prepares for the day.
My perspective in being a stay-at-home mom started to change as I realized I was impacting the nations from my kitchen sink. The walls of our house were no longer boundary lines representing confinement, but instead, I began to travel the globe in prayer.
Most of all, I realized the impact I will have on my children. If only what we do for Christ will last, then I want every mundane moment to be filled with an eternal, Christ exalting purpose, especially with little eyes watching. My actions will either motivate my family to make the most of their lives for the Gospel and experience the joy of Christ, or to seek after something else. Oh that I would make much of Christ and make the most of my mundane moments!
Would you join me in making 2017 the year of making the most of mundane moments for Christ?
Mimi Brady is wife to her sweet Lee and a stay-at-home mom to two small children. She is a member of Christ Covenant Church in Matthews, North Carolina where she serves on the women’s leadership team. Mimi has recently launched the No Ordinary Day Planner to help provide tools for how to plan your days with eternity in mind. When Mimi isn’t with her kiddos, she can be found flipping through cookbooks looking for a new recipe to try, making coffee and making a mess in the kitchen.