Let me preface this article by saying, most of the wisdom I’m sharing here was learned the hard way…this isn’t one of those, “do as I do in 3 easy steps” moments. I’m coming to you fresh from the battlefield that is Motherhood. So fresh, that I almost hesitate to share because in many ways, I’m still in the trenches. So, hear me when I say, this is what I know so far to be true. This is what has been revealed to me in some hard-won battles and what I will cling to in the moments yet to unfold. I joke around with my close friends about being more of a “cautionary tale” than a fountain of wisdom.
But, I have experienced so much of the grace of God in hard times as well as better-than-I-could’ve imagined times, and I want to share with you some truths that have been faithful companions no matter the circumstance.
If you’ve ever flipped on the radio and heard the soothing sounds of The Commodores crooning, “You know I’m eeeeasy, easy like Sunday morning”, you probably sang right along and went about your day. One particular morning I heard the words of that chorus and they stopped me in my tracks. Anyone who’s ever gotten kids — in my case, three kids — ready for church knows Sunday mornings are anything but easy. Amiright? Once the initial sarcastic comment crossed my mind, it was like the Holy Spirit wanted to arrest me and pour into me a particular truth that has marked my life as a Mom: Authenticity matters!
No one knows you better than those sweet little people who share your space and occupy your thoughts 24/7. We owe it to our children to be our real selves. We can dress everybody up and get them to church on time, smile and wave to all of our church friends, worship with the best of them, tell the pastor how God really used him to speak to our heart, collect the kids, show them off at lunch, even post a #sundayselfie to the ‘Gram, but if we get home and take off our Sunday best only to reveal hidden/unseen, unhealthy layers, what is it all for?
Authenticity means apologizing to our kids when we get it wrong. It means honest answers to the tough questions they ask. It means allowing the Holy Spirit to put his finger on any area of our lives and gently correct us. How can we expect our children to be comforted by the correction of a loving parent if we don’t yield ourselves to the correction of a loving Heavenly Father? Stay humble and teachable before the Lord. Let your kids in on the journey. We’re all in this together, remember?
The next truth that has shaped my mothering, that I wish I had implemented sooner but am also aware that it is never too late to begin, is this: Praying in the Spirit matters! All prayer is beneficial and important, but there is a power that comes when we partner with the Holy Spirit on behalf of our children. It is unmatched by anything I’ve encountered. As a young mom, I struggled with debilitating anxiety over all of the unknowns facing me every single day. It didn’t matter whether the decision was which fruit to introduce, which form of schooling to choose, what book to read at bedtime. The decision fatigue set in quickly and I was toast; lost in analysis paralysis, a sea of indecision where I was drowning. After struggling silently with what I was so sure no other mother had faced, I began to seek wisdom from the Lord on the matter. Imagine that! He heard my cry and answered me. “Wanna confuse the enemy, Marie? Wanna know the plans I have for your children, want some peace in your life and in your mind?”
Um YES, please and thank you, I’ll do anything, Lord. “Pray in the Spirit!”
When I tell you I have known peace like you wouldn’t believe and have been able to truly trust the Lord with my kids and their future for the first time in all of my years of mothering, believe me. Praying in the Spirit is powerful and so often overlooked. And if you want to go all-in, find some friends who you can do this with and for, then sit back and BE AMAZED! It’s trajectory-changing!
The final truth I want to share with you is so important. It is one that I can say the Lord has given me so much grace to live out with my children. And when I say that I mean, in the moments where I’ve missed it He has graced me with quick conviction to repair, renounce and rename whatever it is I’ve failed to speak words of TRUTH over: Your Words Matter!
It’s never too late to agree with what the Word of God says about our children. Just one promise from God’s Word declared over your kids can erase a million lies of the Enemy! As you read portions of scripture, search for the ones that resonate with you for your kids. Speak them out loud. Pray them outlaid. Tell your kids what you see for them. Children will become who we tell them they are. Words create worlds.
Let the words you speak over your children be words of life, encouragement, truth and love! The most important legacy we will leave our kids are the words we speak over them. Those words will plant seeds in their lives that will come to harvest over their children, and so on and so on. The Word of the Lord never ever returns void.
Mama, you’ve got this! The Holy Spirit in you is strong and well- equipped for the journey ahead. You know where your help comes from? Your help comes from the Lord, the Maker of Heaven and earth. He is a firm foundation and a very present help. He is the source of all wisdom. You are the exact mother each on of your children need. You were chosen to guide them and steward their God-given talents, gifts, dispositions and their purpose. Partner with them, laugh with them, be real with them, pray for them and speak the word over them! And one day when they are launched into adulthood, you’ll get to sit back and enjoy an actual warm cup of coffee and a clean home and know that you fought the good fight. You ran the race marked out for you with excellence, humor and lots and lots of grace!