It was almost 9:00 at night, and I was just then able to think about supper for myself. As I pulled the cheese toast from the oven, its American-cheesiness making my stomach growl, I thought, “I should take a picture of this.”
So I did.
I intended to post the picture to Facebook with a caption along the lines of: “You know you’re a busy mama when it’s cheese toast for supper at 9:00. Why? Because at the normal dinner hour, you were preoccupied with feeding someone else and making sure her baseball bag was loaded for that night’s game.”
Somewhere between putting the pot holder down and picking up my phone to take the picture, though, something in my mind (or my heart – sometimes its hard to tell which) said no. “You can take the picture,” it seemed to say, “but don’t post it to Facebook. There’s something else here to be said.”
While I ate, I thought about it. What would have been my intention in posting that picture to Facebook? What purpose would it have served to share that with the world?
The only thing it would have done is to call attention to myself – to my life – to my busy schedule and, if I’m honest, to my own need to be seen. It would have been a plea for congratulations. A request for accolade. An asking for recognition.
“Good job, mama. You’re doing right. You are a good mom.“
After such a long day, something in my heart needed someone to see me – to recognize what I had done in getting her things together, her uniform ready for the game, her supper made and eaten. Something in me needed someone to know that I had worked so hard to get out the door on time, only to be held up by roadwork, traffic, and a vicious nosebleed in the back seat of my car on the way. I needed someone to know something about my day, and I needed someone to nod in recognition and appreciation of my efforts.
But I realized something else – something far more powerful than any thumbs-up “like” on Facebook could have ever told me.
Whether I post snippets about my day on social media or not, I am seen.
Whether I share pictures of my daily life with explanations of their back story or not, my story is known.
Whether I tell everyone how hard my day has been or not, my efforts are not unnoticed.
The thing is, God sees my every move. He sees every thankless act of motherhood I undertake, whether my daughter or husband or anyone else ever knows about it. He knows my every tired, hungry, worn-out, frustrated, stressed, “how can it only be Wednesday?” thought. He notices my scurrying to get things in the car and my struggle to hold my tongue and speak softly even when I’ve told her a hundred times to get her shoes on. He sees, and He knows. He notices me.
So friends, whatever your thankless, behind-the-scenes work is for today, be encouraged. You are not as invisible as you feel, and your efforts are not unnoticed. You are seen. You are known. You are loved.