I received this from MOPS awhile back but stumbled across it recently and wanted to share it (based on 1 Corinthians 13)
If I live in a house of spotless beauty with everything in its place, but have not love, I am a housekeeper, not a homemaker.
If I have time for waxing, polishing, and decorative achievements, but have not love, my children learn cleanliness- not godliness.
If I scream at my children for every infraction, and fault them for every mess they make, but have not love, my children become people-pleasers, not obedient children.
Love leaves the dust in search of a child's laugh. Love smiles at the tiny fingerprints on a newly cleaned window. Love wipes away the tears before it wipes up the spilled milk. Love picks up the child before it picks up the toys.
Love accepts the fact that I am the ever-present "mommy", the taxi-driver to every childhood event, the counselor when my children fail or are hurt.
Love crawls with the baby, walks with the toddler, and runs with the child, then stands aside to let the youth walk into adulthood.
Before I became a mother I took glory in my house of perfection. Now I glory in God's perfection of my child. (Jenae's edition addition: and His work in me!)
All the projects I had for my house and my children have faded away into insignificance, and what remain are the memories of my kids.
Now there abides in my home scratches on most of the furniture, dishes with missing place settings, and bedroom walls full of stickers, poster and markings, but the greatest of all is the Love that permeates my relationships with my children.