Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Maternal Tempation

I'm currently reading C.S. Lewis' Four Loves.

A certain section struck me as I was reading about Affection and our need for affection. This can come out in two ways, either through a need-love, or a gift-love. We all need affection. We all need to be needed through affection, and we all need to give through affection. However, as I was reading about gift-love and an inherent temptation that comes along with it, I was struck with something that will be very good for me to keep in mind as a mama.

He goes on to talk about the temptation of gift-love that needs to give; therefore needs to be needed. That's obvious right? but the temptation comes, when we don't realize that the "proper aim of giving is to put the recipient in a state where he no longer needs our gift...The hour when we can say 'They need me no longer' should be our reward."

Wow, as a Mom of a toddler, and of a baby not yet born, this is almost unimaginable. All that i'm doing is providing for needs: getting him out of bed, getting him dressed, going potty, changing diapers, feeding, playing, reading, teaching, correcting.....the cycle goes on and on. So, to remember when Colson tackles a certain accomplishment on his own, whether it be to go potty all on his own, or in 20 years when he leaves our home and becomes one with another, and every task achieved in between, shall be a reward. What a blessing if we can see it that way, and what a disappointment, if all I want is to be needed, if all of my worth is in providing for his needs.

To quote Lewis again: "We feed children in order that they soon be able to feed themselves; we teach them in order that they may soon not need our teaching."

This is helping me realize that not only when Colson and all our children are grown will this be important, but all along the way, it will be something I'll need to remember: that in my relationship with my children, I need more than a need to provide. As a human, as a mother, this temptation will certainly be there to want to grasp and hold, "to keep my object needy, or to invent for them imaginary needs." Lewis says that in order to let go of this desire, something more needs to be added, and that his goodness; patience, self denial, humility, and the coninual intervention of a far greater sort of love than Affection, in itself can ever be. "If we live by this 'Affection' alone, affection will go bad on us." And ultimately it turns into a form of, not love, but hatred.


Chris/ty said...

Wow Ker. Thought provoking. I am going to get that book. It is so good to keep in mind that we are given these children from the Lord to raise as servants of Him and not to fulfill out needs as mom's. Thanks friend. I loved that.

PS - how are you feeling?? I want to know more about how your pregnancy is going!

Bridget Beth said...

WOW. Wise words indeed.

J Yo said...

This is so great! Thanks for Christy said, it's so good to keep this in mind so that our kids grow up to be God-serving, independent people.

Jessica said...

Beautiful thoughts. I must read that book.

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