"By eight-thirty in the morning I'm already exhausted."
These are the words my daughter, Julia, used to describe yet another day in raising a very active three year old boy and a six month old cutie named Sophia. Her lament is common to moms dealing with very young children who require constant attention and more energy to care for than one person normally has. Oh, others can come by to visit and marvel at how wonderful the kids are, or take a moment to cuddle and play with, even spend a few hours actually babysitting these two, but in the end we know who's in charge. My wife (who has raised four) once said that the toughest thing about being a mother was that you're always on "stand-by." A sentiment now equally shared by our daughter who is, herself, always on stand-by as these two grow up to care for themselves, hence the exhaustion.
Which brings me to a similar idea when it comes to our own "church family." When it comes to caring and serving there are some members who are always on "stand-by." Unlike others who breeze in and out on a Sunday morning for worship, content to visit and then a quick goodbye, or those, who if convenient, might render a service if asked, there are some – no, many in this congregation who truly feel accountable for the welfare of this church family. They are always on stand-by to serve in any way because very much like Julia and her little ones, they feel that this is their family and in the end they are responsible.
I want to commend you and say to you, who are constantly serving, the same thing that I say to my daughter when the burden of parenting gets a little heavy:
"You're doing the right thing, don't be discouraged in doing good, and know that your reward will exceed your effort. I know this for a fact – look at what a great Christian mother (servant) you are becoming." Love, Dad