Why did he leave out the dishes?  Doesn’t he realize that I had the kitchen clean?  Can’t he learn to do the dishes after he cooks breakfast?  Ugh….why does she have to drag every single toy into the kitchen to be near me?  Can’t she realize that I’ve spent all day cleaning up after her?  Oh, and now the other one needs to nurse again, great.  Like I have time to sit and feed him.

Some days I find my train of thought doing this.  I can be such a martyr.  Poor, poor me getting to stay home and take care of my family.  How dare they actually expect me to do what the Lord has created me to do!!!  I mean, really!

I have been spending a lot of time and reflection with the FlyLady over at  She is a wonderful teacher for those of us that homemaking doesn’t come naturally.  I have learned to take it one step at a time, building small habits that have turned our messy house into a clean, nurturing home.

Of all the lessons the Fly Lady has taught me, letting go of the martyr is the hardest and most rewarding. I’ve driven the previous thought train off of a bridge and decided to conduct another.  It goes more like this:

I am so thankful for a husband that cooks me breakfast after I’ve had a long night with the kids.  God has truly blessed me with such a wonderful man.  I am so glad that Evalyn wants to be near me and help.  And now I get to teach her how to clean up after herself.  What a great life lesson to learn!  Nursing is such a great gift to both David and I…I’m thankful that God has given us a built in time to bond and spend with each other.  Not to mention the awesome weight-loss factor that happens!

Seriously, it may sound overly-cheesy, but I really do replace the negative thoughts with the positive ones and my whole day and outlook on life are so much more joyful.  It’s kind of like Polyanna’s “Glad Game” (a future post).

So instead of being the Negative-Nancy martyr, I am going to strive to be the kind of martyr God intends me to be.  Not necessarily the kind that gets burned at the stake, although if it were to come to that….

Anyway.  I am talking about the kind of martyr that dies to yourself.  Putting others needs before your own and being truly joyful to serve those needs.  That is the kind of martyr we are called to be.

St. Joan of Arc, pray for us that we may be holy warriors of God by putting others needs before our own.  Pray that we have the courage to die to ourselves and let Christ shine bright.  Amen.