Mothering is often not fun. Most moms have figured out how to weather the un-fun times with grace. Not perfection. Grace. But since yesterday was Mother’s Day, and that particular day of honor can pack a punch to the gut for some moms, I thought a closer look might be in order.
What happens when . . .
〉 Mothering has left you feeling like a monster?
〉 Mothering has robbed you of your dreams?
〉 Mothering has drained your sense of identity?
〉 Mothering made you wish you could run far, far away?
〉 Mothering has been so painful your pillow cradles more tears than snoozes?
These are deep questions I don’t have specific answers to. But I do have some suggestions.
What would happen if . . .
† You believe what God’s Word says about you?
† You trust God’s promises for the future?
† You let God handle the impossible?
† You count your blessings?
† You worship God anyway?
This month in my Facebook posts I’ve been writing about each of my five children. I share what they were like when we first got them; the challenges they presented me; how they’ve grown into respectable adults; and what I learned because of them. The following are the key thoughts I have shared, or will share.
- Jesus has no last name. When my child follows Jesus, he/she doesn’t necessarily have to look like me or my husband.
- Moms are teachers but they also need to be learners. We need to listen carefully and learn from our children.
- Moms need to have tender hearts but thick skin, and not let our children’s words or behaviors define our sense of success or failure.
- Walking through fire with our children can cause our relationships with them to be purified and stronger.
- Our children are more than a bundle of behaviors. Their feelings run deep, requiring a careful and gracious approach.
This is what we do when mothering isn’t fun.
This is what changes our . . .
♥ self-image from monster-ish into angel-ish
♥ dreams from nightmares into aspirations
♥ identity from waning into flourishing
♥ desire to run to excitement to stay, and
♥ private tears into public praise
In spite of my innumerable monster-ish, nightmarish, and heart-rending experiences as a mom, I can promise you today that eventually the sun does come out and you will again smile and sing and dance.
I received the following Mother’s Day greeting from one of my children yesterday:
Happy Mother’s Day Mom! I thank you to this day for loving me and taking me and my hooligan brother into your life. We were your first tornadoes. Thank you for putting up with us all and teaching us life lessons as well as school. We learned more than most schools offer. We all tested you but you showed us love, the best love any little Russian boy could ever wish for. I can’t ever thank you enough for giving me a chance at life. I love you Mama!
None of my kids turned out as I hoped they would. But, I promise you, hurting and weary mom, in time you will have more good days than bad. You will feel pride in your children. The work of your hands will be established (Psalm 90:17), and God will say to you, “Well done, good and faithful servant” (Luke 19:17).
Copyright May 2016 by Cheri Johnson