Thursday, July 18, 2013

Motherhood is for A Lifetime


"The mother's heart is the child's schoolroom."
                        - Henry Ward Beecher 

Sometimes we often joke that when we are unburdened with young children and toddlers, we will have more freedom for ourselves. We can travel without hindrance and finally "achieve" those things we got held up from when our children were young. And it's partially true---to enjoy a vacation, a real vacation without all the gear of babies, naps and fussy times, will surely be wonderful. To read a book in a few days time, rather than a few months time--or let's face it a few years-- will be much needed and enjoyed!

Although the diapers, late nights, breastfeeding, bottles, sicknesses and making every meal will be gone eventually, the truth is they will need us in other ways. The needs of a child for his or her mother is never lessened. It just changes with the seasons of life. The need of a child for a mother is designed by God for a lifetime.

"As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you; and you will be comforted over Jerusalem." - Isaiah 66:13

God knew what He was doing when He designed mothers. He needed someone to care for His children, provide nourishment---physical, spiritual, emotional and mental. He needed someone to be a reflection of His love for them, even though we can never love them as much as God loves them.

Our children don't stop needing us when they are ten and can make some food for themselves, shower themselves and be more independent. They don't stop needing us when they are sixteen and can drive themselves. They don't stop needing us when they are studying in college. The need doesn't stop when they are married. No, the needs just change but they are still there.

They need us to listen when they have the big questions of life. The what is God's plan for my life and whom should I marry questions. The debate on what job to take questions, the dreams of their heart and the things that they fear. The inner things they struggle with inside themselves. The how do I cook this or that questions. The can I wash this in the washing machine questions. They need us for that too. Our children lean on us and look to us and our lives. They need us to comfort and they need us to be strong. These are the very things we look to God to be for ourselves, aren't they?

As mothers we have to look to God to comfort, to give strength, to provide wisdom on how to mother the children He gave us. To give us energy to make it through the day. We have to lean on God to be a mother. He is our strong tower, our Adonai. We can lean on Him to mother for a lifetime. It is only through leaning on God that we are able to accomplish this. Our fragile human strength will never achieve this apart from God.

"The name of the LORD is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe." Proverbs 18:10

Our society may think of mothering as temporary at times, that it ends when our children turn 18. No, it doesn't end, it changes. Mothering never ends. We will short change our children if we think it ends. If at that moment they move out of our home, we count ourselves as "free."

Mothering is a lifetime of laying down ones life for your children. Mothering is mothering the motherless that may come into our lives. It is answering the 2am phone call. It is staying up late listening to their hearts. It is being a grandmother when your child has had a new baby and their eyelids can't stay open any longer from lack of sleep. It is answering the how do I get the baby to stop crying questions. How do I do this and that questions. Mothering is cleaning your childs house when they are too tired to move. Mothering is comfort. Mothering is taking care of them when they are 40 years old and sick. Mothering is reflecting God. Mothering is love. Mothering is being a servant of Christ.

"Since Jesus highly values children, mothers are His servants when they bless their children for Him." - Art Birch

Why does the culture we live in find this so hard? Because our self sacrifice smells of the fragrance of Christ. The world rejects Christ, remember? “If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first. The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you." John 15:18-19 

Our living for others smells of not living only for ones self. Self sacrifice is hard and it goes against the cultures ideals of selfishness. We go against selfishness when we give up a giant corporate paycheck for our children. We go against selfishness when we think that these God created children that are more valuable than any dollar signs. We go against selfishness when we aren't out everyday pursuing our own desires. We go against selfishness when we cut corners to do with less possessions to be with our children, train them, and love them.

"For we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing..." 2 Corinthians 2:15

What did Jesus do with His life? He ministered to those God put in front of Him. He laid down His life for those He loved. Us. Too often we think laying down our life means actual physical death that takes our body from this world. But laying down our life also means dying to ourselves.  

I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me, and delivered Himself up for me. Galations 2:20

God never stops being our Heavenly Father when we are older, does He? He never stops comforting our hearts and our minds. He never stops teaching us and He never stops loving us.

Mothers--in a lot of ways we are our children's lifelong "friends." This isn't meant in a non disciplining, non parental way, but in a Godly way. Jesus also meant that when we lay down our life for those we love, although they may have the name of "child", there is nothing greater.

 "Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends." John 15:13

"A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials, heavy and sudden, fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends who rejoice with us in our sunshine, desert us when troubles thicken around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts."
- Washington Irving

 This is what a mother is called to do by God. Never stop loving, never stop comforting, never stop teaching. Never stop giving. She provides a haven of peace. She lays down her selfishness at the foot of the cross. She will do it with God's strength and wisdom guiding her for a lifetime.

The loveliest materpiece of the heart of God is the love of a Mother.
-St. Therese of Lisieux

 Prayer: "God, help me to love my children as you love them. Show me your heart for them. Show me how to guide them with your wisdom and show them Yourself through me." Amen.

"As apostles of Christ we could have been a burden to you, but we were gentle among you, like a mother caring for her little children."
- 1 Thessalonians 2:7

"I have been reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also."
- 2 Timothy 1:5

"So it is not the will of my Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish." Matthew 18:14

"Becoming a mother makes you the mother of all children. From now on each wounded, abandoned, frightened child is yours. You live in the suffering mothers of every race and creed and weep with them. You long to comfort all who are desolate."
- Charlotte Gray

 "A mother's yearning feels the presence of the cherished child even in the degraded man."
- George Eliot 

"Women know the way to rear up children (to be just). They know a simple, merry, tender knack of tying sashes, fitting baby-shoes, and stringing pretty words that make no sense. And kissing full sense into empty words."
- Elizabeth Barrett Browning





  1. What a beautiful reminder. I am sorry to say that I often choose to listen to society and ignore what I know to be true when it come to the job of motherhood. But this is a good reminder of the Truth.

    Thank you

    I'd love for you to share this with my Cozy Reading Spot, it's open for the rest of today (Monday) but will reopen on Thursday if that would work better for you.

    I hope to see you there.


  2. Agree with Marissa, this is a beautiful reminder of what a mother should be. Forget about what society says. They are almost always wrong. I am a mother by marriage and am so blessed to be. It is a lifelong job. Linking with Living Proverbs 31. Kim from Pouring Down Like Rain.

  3. Hello, I have lived this all with many ups and downs with the many years of being a Godly Woman and Momma. One thing I can always remember was how I was never prepared for when they all left home. Now in these last 13 years I have had to become the older woman and seek for a new direction to be used. I still feel the calling as a wife to my husband is still needed even more so then when we were so fixed on our children.
    Darn they grew up and left home :( But alas we gave them a wonderful foundation and roots. Now we have 7 grand children!!
    Please come visit me some time in the future...
    Love your heart!
    Blessings, Roxy

  4. Such important truths to impart, Ashley. Mothers get such mixed messages in our culture. I love that our children need us for a lifetime because I miss them already and only one is in college. Blessings.

  5. This is an encouraging post. Thank you so very much. Sometimes I wonder what I would do if I were in my mom's position. I remind myself that someday I may be there... ... will I consider the lady our daughter has grown to be and take her as she is or will I expect her to do and be what I want? Will I be unselfish and go to her when it suits her best? Will I then travel the distance to make the visit easier for her? Will I listen to how she hopes or feels the Father leading her family train up the children she is blessed with? Will I allow her to learn how to tend to her new baby without pushing what I learned on her? I don't know. ... ... Likewise, someday I may have the opportunity to be in my mother-in-laws position. What will I do to encourage my daughter-in-law as she trains up our grandchildren. Will I be able to be there for her in the ways she needs or will I only be able to be there for our son whom we trained up? Will I be an encouragement in her walk with the Lord or not? Will I be able to enjoy conversations with her even if our son has to work late? Will she want to stay with us without our son if he is on a business trip? Will I be an encouragement to the young ladies in my life when our children are grown? I suppose that is what I wonder. Will they turn to Christ in me and desire the help He uses me to share? I don't know. I hope for strong lasting Christ centered relationships with our two growing blessings and have hoped and prayed for that since they were in the bassinette. It is something I continue to ask Father for. I want that in my life, an older woman who will listen to me and encourage me to fallow God's leading in my life as a wife and mother and I don't believe I have that. It's heart breaking to feel this way. I would love for the Lord to use me in this way to other women, I am not at all sure how He may do that. So, I pray. A LOT. *gentle smile* Thank you for this scripture filled confermation that I have understood but haven't figured out how to express. Have a blessed day growing in His ways. Sinerely, Mommy of two growing blessings & so much more!

  6. I enjoyed reading your post today. As a young mother, I had a sweet friend, an older woman, tell me that in every phase of my children's lives there is sweetness and joy, and there is difficulty and ugliness. She encouraged me to look for the positives in every stage of their growing up, and trust God to get us through the not-so-great parts.
    As I look back over the years, I realize how true this is. And, honestly, I now see that it was easier in their younger years when I understood better what their needs were and how to meet them. Raising children into adulthood has stretched me and my own faith, taught me so much about my God and His promises.
    This motherhood journey is an exciting one!

  7. So sweet. I'm 33, and I still need my mommy. :-) I love that my kids need me. I think our culture discourages the bond between moms and children by making mothers both resent that need and feel guilty for not shoving their little birdies out of the nest before their wings are strong enough. We're supposed to make them "independent", but we really end up breaking their spirits.

  8. Sound biblical instruction and a call to our higher calling with His help. Thanks for posting. Featuring at Family Fun Friday.

  9. So good to read your words of encouragement for mothers. I found joy in the Bible verses and quotes that you gathered in this post. I'm visiting from the Homemaking Party.