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Duty or Delight?

Are you parenting out of Duty or Delight?

I suppose when one thinks of duty, there is certain nobility to the sound of the word. It is my duty to be a good American, friend, wife, mother, daughter, and employee, but whatever is done for duty’s sake has not been personified, has not been felt, has not been lived. There is nothing but a pragmatic, stoic action behind duty. Duty is absent of emotion, sacrifice extravagance and love. If we parent out of a sense of duty, we find ourselves bitter, burnt out people, wondering when our reward will come. Duty stifles hope and joy. What if our work suddenly resembled children playing in the sandbox? How do we move from a posture of drudgery to a posture of delight?

Do you know yourself well enough to know what you delight in? What brings you pleasure? How have you put those things out to the margin of life in a season of raising children? Why? Identify these things and start to integrate them into your day. If we can lean into the way we’re made rather than being so resistant to it, we might find ourselves laughing over the kitchen sink as we clank the dinner dishes clean.

Remember: You will need to find some play time if you want to delight in your work.

Try this: What did you used to love to do when you were a kid? Dance, ice skate, take a hike in the woods? Take two hours this week and go do it! Do it by yourself and allow for some good playtime. The more you play, the more you find delight in your work.