Many times, I feel invisible. I wonder whether anyone sees the “real me” (whoever that is; sometimes I think she disappeared about 3 1/2 years ago when Button was born). I wonder whether anyone sees what I need. I wonder whether anyone sees what I’m doing. Heck, what am I doing anyway? Am I contributing anything?

And I suspect I’m not the only one who feels this way.

Recently I read a fantastic reflection on a book of the great cathedrals in Europe. The author identified 4 truths from the book that are directly applicable to my life, and to the lives of countelss women I know:

  1. No one can say who built the great cathedrals – we have no record of their names.
  2. The builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished.
  3. They made great sacrifices and expected (and received) no credit.
  4. The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.

It reminds me of a story I heard regarding the buidling of the national cathedral in D.C.: Builders spent many months carving intricate details into the soaring spires of the cathedral. When asked why they spent so long on details so small that they would never be seen by people , they replied, “We’re building for God, not for people.”

How true that is for the work we women do. It usually goes unnoticed by people, but God notices. He sees the sacrifices we make every day. He sees the notes we send, the calls we make, the prayers we say, the meals we prepare, the things we do to make others’ lives smoother, the little things that make others feel loved, and the ways we care for others’ needs. He sees how we live most of our lives for others, with little in return. But no act of love has been too small for Him to see; no kind thought has gone unnoticed by Him.

The author made a point that really resonated with me: When I really think about it, I don’t want my kids to tell their friends who they’re bringing home from college for Thanksgiving, “My Mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she hand bastes a turkey for three hours, and serves dinner in an immaculate, model-home-like dining room.” That would mean I’d given in to covetousness and built a shrine to Martha Stewart. Really, I want my kids to want to come home and to tell their freinds, “You’re gonna love it there!”

As women, we are building great cathedrals, even though we will never see them finished. In expecting and receiving no credit for our sacrifices, we are ridded of pride and self-centeredness, which makes room for a passion for God and an unwavering faith. If we’re building right, we will never get credit. But one day the world will marvel at the sacrifices countless invisible, godly women made as they see cathedrals all around them. To God be the glory.