While living in California, a leader of our Sunday class referred to his wife as "low maintainence". It was a compliment, and everyone smiled. The wife, Michele, also smiled, but I wondered if she would say the same about her husband. But Michele was famous for her high capacity, always serving and always thinking of others first, staying calm and moving on to the next thing, even with two toddlers in tow. Privately, by email, Michele revealed to me that was the appearence she gave but in reality, she often was overwhelmed. We then had long exchanges about budgeting time and energy like we would money. Knowing where the value was, making a little go a long way, and putting out large expenditures where it mattered, as well as putting some in reserve in cases of emergencies. In short, living wisely. I was glad to encourage a young mom who wanted to glorify God and build up His church. [Some time later, I cooked for a women's luncheon and Michele came in the kitchen asking to help, it was such a pleasure to tell her no, please sit down and enjoy the fellowship].
Giving out much and asking little in return is something that will drive a woman into the ground. Women love sacrificially for whom or what they care about. Sometimes at a risk. Sometimes foolishly. It's been called many things, including maternal instinct. Many a woman would live like this 24/7 all their lives, but is that really glorifying to God? Is this really our calling?
It depends. I had a friend and room mate who was deeply involved in helping women spiritually grow--it became a full time ministry for her eventually, for awhile. She told us during our bible study that she can only give as much as she receives from her walk with God--so daily quiet times and deep prayer times that connected her to the heart of God and His word mattered a lot to her.
I agree with her. As a result, I've seen God take my "loaf of bread and a few fish" and mulitiply it further than I could imagine. The key isn't me, it is Him through me.