Be kind anyway | Anthea's Project Life
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Be kind anyway (even when you are annoyed)

After ten years with my husband, there are no more fluffy clouds and the roses are no longer in full bloom. After all these years together our honeymoon period is a long forgotten memory and everything just feels like such hard work.

This was how I felt all day long on Sunday. My husband woke up with a supposed pinched nerve in his back which rendered him completely useless. The only mobility he could just barely manage was the walk between the bathroom (to take a nice relaxing bubble bath) and the TV room, while I was left to tidy up, clean the dishes, bath and clothe the children, cook a pot roast for lunch, etc. Needless to say, I was fuming and doing chores all day….

In fact, I’m pretty sure I was breathing fire whenever I spotted him in my peripheral vision and hardly exchanged one word with him until the bedtime.

Sisters picking up the slack

I couldn’t help thinking of every occasion when I had been down with a cold or bogged down by deadlines yet still managed to perform all my regular functions for my family and work.

powerful-womenI lamented about how the term “cave man” was aptly given because I was pretty sure that it was the sisters who were the hunter/gatherers in the clan in addition to taking care of the family and hearth while the men lounged around in their “man caves” all day!

When I shared this sentiment with my husband, he defended his ancestors by saying that they must have had it rough because they had such short life spans. I quickly retorted that it was likely due to my ancestral sisters knocking them off, lay-abouts that they were!

It’s a day later and my steam has cooled down and now I start to wonder how my husbands back is doing. I remembered these words from a friend who said: “In the words of Mother Theresa, be kind anyway”. I finally google this and read the entire poem:

Do it Anyway — Mother Teresa

People are often unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered.
Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind,
people may accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
Be kind anyway.

If you are successful,
you will win some false friends and some true enemies.
Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and frank,
people may cheat you.
Be honest and frank anyway.

What you spend years building,
someone could destroy overnight.
Build anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness,
they may be jealous.
Be happy anyway.

The good you do today,
people will often forget tomorrow.
Do good anyway.

Give the world the best you have,
and it may never be enough.
Give the best you’ve got anyway.

You see,
in the final analysis it is between you and God;
it was never between you and them anyway.

That poem made me think of this verse in the bible:

“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as though you were working for the Lord and not for people”

Colossians 3:23-24

Oops. My bad.

I was living under the assumption that my love had to be earned and reciprocated. I had completely forgotten that every single day I tap into the well of love from a Father and a Friend that I did not deserve to know, had not earned my place, a love that was freely given to me by grace and not because of any merit.

How could I forget that?

As an imperfect wife and mom, I struggle to be a good friend, a good wife and a good mom when there is mostly very little reward. It gets especially hard when I feel as though all my efforts are unappreciated and that I am being taken for granted.

Well God gave me a reminder today that I am a child of a perfect Almighty God who has called me to be more than that. I was born in this time and place not by accident, but by design in order to shine for Him. By grace alone I am loved, I didn’t do anything to earn my salvation or my blessings.

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The sacrifice that comes from serving others with your time and your deeds is an act of love in itself. And when it is done begrudgingly or with an expectation of thanks or acknowledgement, it is no longer an act of love.

Jesus Christ showed us by His example the deeper joy to be found in serving others out of a love for Him. How much easier should it not be to show love by actions to our loved ones?

So I waited until lunchtime, then I called my husband, the man that God set aside for me out of all the other men in the world, the one who stands beside me even when I am grumpy and the one who not only gets all my jokes, speaks “Anthea”, but also makes me laugh everyday. I called him to tell him that I love and adore him. I also thanked him for all the little things that he does for me and the children and upon reflection, ladies, I can tell you that the list is endless…

If you were encouraged at all by this post, please share it with someone who might also benefit from it!

Anthea

Anthea O'Neill is a wife and proud mom of three. She is front-end web developer, blogger and a self-proclaimed glitter & yarn addict. Anthea's Project Life is a blog for the modern mom.

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8 Comments

  1. Really nicely written Anthea. I could almost picture me and my hubby in the same scenario!! Although it’s only 5 years in our case!! 😛

  2. Great post ….wise words defo food for thought
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  3. Stephanie says:

    My grandmother always said. ..never do to others what they do to you…..what she meant (I learnt later in life) is always be kind to others. She probably got that from Mother Theresa. Thank you for this beautiful reminder of our greatest example of love and kindness…. Jesus Christ!

  4. I know the feeling.

    My wife and I go through this from time to time, where one seems to be doing all the work while the other is a lay about. We’ve been together 10 years, too, and we’re…I mean I am still learning to communicate effectively when I feel this way.

    I’m used to being the “suck it up and do it anyway” guy in my family, baggage I’m carrying from my childhood, and I’m just now, at 42 (almost 43) figuring out how to drop that baggage and leave it behind me.

    Great post… love this one!

  5. I have been teaching my children about Mother Teresa and her beliefs towards doing good. My daughter just recently said that “it’s hard when everyone is so mean” and the other said “I’m just a kid mom”. I agreed and told them that it is hard even as an adult. The best way I show them and the world the characteristics of a Christian is living as one. Though I sometimes get grumpy, annoyed and don’t smile. I do “it” (forgive, be kind, love, share…) anyway. Doing “it” has strengthened all of my relationships for the good. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Anthea says:

      She truly is an inspiration for doing good!

  6. trenna says:

    I would say you are on a roll. I am looking forward to reading your blog every day. They have a man cave – I want the she shed!

    1. Anthea says:

      Hahaha!

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