Note from Kat: This post is from my good friend and monthly contributor, Liz Griffin.
For nearly five years my husband and I have been in the process of adopting internationally. The whole story could be an entire summer-long series, so I will spare you too many details. The journey has included four different adoption agencies, three different state processes, and three international adoption programs. It’s been kind of insane at times.
Adoption doesn’t just require lots of time, it requires quite a bit of money. International adoption isn’t exactly cheap. A few months ago some friends of ours put together a bake sale outside of our church’s college service one Wednesday night. We had a large amount of goodies and hoped to get a couple hundred bucks out of the deal.
It was the usual gang of sugary items. Chocolate chip cookies, rice krispy treats, brownies, soapapilla cheesecake squares and the like. Good stuff but nothing gourmet or super fancy. Kids made little signs to hold up as the students piled through the doors.
Students were greeted with chants, songs and cheers directing them to the table inside with all the baked goods. The expectation was not to raise a considerable amount of money. Moms just wanted to get their kids involved in helping bring orphans home and hopefully bring in a couple hundred bucks for our adoption fund.
After the service college students started flooding out and lining up at our bake sale table. Hundreds of college students waiting in line to get their simple deserts. That night we raised nearly $1500. Gulp, yes that’s right. On a little ole bake sale.
I saw one college guy pay $300 for a cookie. And you want to know what? That cookie was not even worth $10. Why in the world was he willing to pay so much for something so basic? Because the cookie was not worth much, but it’s purpose held extreme value.
The generosity of his gift had nothing to do with the quality of ingredients, the culinary education or skills that went into making his cellophane wrapped purchase. He didn’t pay $300 for a cookie. He paid $300 for what the cookie was intended for. To help bring an orphan into a family.
At that moment I realized something.
God isn’t looking at the retail value of what we do. He is looking at the heart of why we do it – which is far more valuable than perfection.
The value of what we do as moms is not measured by how well we execute our plans. Perfectly folded laundry, meals straight off Food Network and expertly crafted children’s artwork on the fridge is not what God is looking for. Although, props to you if that is what your house looks like.
The days where all you have to show is the fact that your offspring are still alive? Those days are worth just as much as the days where no one throws a tantrum while grocery shopping and your kids are looking perfectly coiffed.
Remember the whole thing about man looking at the outer things, but God looking at the heart? The same is true for motherhood. The value in what we do comes from our heart. Our desire to raise godly children and to build strong families. To show little people how important they are and make sure they know they are loved.
That is the intention behind motherhood. That is the $300 cookie.
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Elizabeth is a church planter, speaker, writer and naptime abolitionist. She lives in Texas with her husband and two kids. Her other hobbies include wasting time on social media, trying to remember where she parked her car & browsing Pinterest for DIY projects she will never actually make. you can visit her over at Lark & Bloom or on Twitter @larkandbloom.