This month’s article was recently delivered as one of several devotionals at a bridal shower. This article applies to all women, whether your current calling is mother, wife, daughter or sister. I’ve added some recommendations to the end.
This too shall pass. Always remember, this too shall pass. Tired, weary wife and mother surrounded by never-ending tasks and never-tiring children, this too shall pass.
As you and your husband have purposed to accept the responsibility of someday raising children, training and educating them in your home, I pray you will see the utter sacredness of your task. Through the blur of the motherhood years, remember the blessed privilege that it is to be called mother and teacher.
As a parent, I am to help my child put away habits of sin; determine and help change character weaknesses; and mold my child’s life with godly, Christian character. Their formative years must be treated with a sacredness due its eternal ramifications. What I write on their hearts, or allow to be written there, will ever remain. I have one chance to raise my children. In this business of training and teaching I must understand that I am shaping souls.
Mother, you are the enforcer of the Law. Youmust take the time to fill yourself with the LORD and His Word and then let Him pour His life out through you. It has been said, “It is natural that a child should look up to, and follow, the example of, one who has the training and management of him. Now, what can a teacher make of a child, save what he is himself? What principles can he instill, save those which govern his own mind, and form the basis of his own character?” Know your God. Time spent drawing closer to your Lord is time very well spent.
Discipline, routines…habits! These are the keys to your success. Naturally, we are all bent towards sin. The current of the river of life takes us all on a downward path morally, physically and spiritually. One must be taught how to swim against the current to protect one’s purity and to look not on that which is evil. One must be taught to choose the right foods and to purpose to keep one’s body fit. This takes work and is a real battle against our very flesh. And spiritually speaking, all men have turned aside from their heavenly Creator. It takes a conscious act of the will to seek those things that are above, and to allow God, not self, first place in your heart.
To teach a young soul these things takes time, diligence and effort, great effort. I can not afford to squander the better part of their day and consequently the better part of their formative life.
You can not do this incredibly important job in your own strength. You will need the wisdom of God, nothing less. You will need the boldness of a lion; the protective fierceness of a mama bear; the tenderness of a…of a…of a mother with her child. As tender as a mother…tenderness. It is you, mother, wife, daughter. You are supposed to be tender; giving a love to others that only a wife, a mother, a daughter can give. So selfish, so harsh, so impatient are the ways of most women today.
There are a lot of people in this world. There are even some people that may care for those you love, but no one, no one will ever be able to love your child or your spouse the way you can and should. As you desire God to be patient and forgiving towards you, won’t you be the same towards that child or that spouse. The unmerciful servant in the book of Matthew was forgiven his debt, but turned around to find the man that owed him but a fraction of his own former debt and mercilessly punished him. Oh, Friend, turn and do thou NOT likewise. Give as ‘twas given unto you. “Be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.”
Forgetful, tired mother; your focus has been removed from its rightful place. You are looking around again instead of looking up into the very eyes of Love. Patience, remember, patience. How many times has the Lord extended His patience to you? How many times has the Lord taught you the same spiritual concept: Trust and obey—trust and obey—trust and obey?
My duty must always outweigh my feelings and my desires. As one with great influence in the home, I can not afford to carelessly react. I must purposefully act. Pouring my life into another isalways worth it. Mothering and teaching is a selfless act; but so is loving; truly loving. And life would be so cold, so lonely without love and tenderness. What is it in this life that does truly count? What is it thatdoes truly matter? You’ll find it as you look deeply into the eyes of those who love you and those whom you love.
Our God is so kind and so merciful to have warned us of our hopeless condition in this life if we choose to live without Him. And He has been so kind to light our darkened path with the light of His Word. Read it, heed it, and teach it to those dear little ones who long only for your love, patience and understanding. “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” (Gal. 6:7-9)
Dear Friend, allow the Holy Spirit to fill you and control you; all of you, all your day long. Grieve Him not by your speech, your actions, or your selection of reading material. Prayerfully search our library shelves for reading material that draws you closer and closer to your precious Saviour. Look for titles by Elizabeth George, Hannah Whitall Smith, Frances Havergal, Charlotte Mason, etc.
You are no different in makeup from Daniel and from Ruth or Esther. They submitted their life to their God and sought to please Him in all their choices.Character deficiencies can be bolstered and altered forever through God’s Word and a diligent application of the truth; spiritual apathy can be obliterated with an honest meeting with your heavenly Father who specializes in banishing discouragement (just stare into the wonder of Him for a while); and wrong paths taken can be used to transport you into lessons for your good and His glory.
The past is past. Your Father chooses to forget confessed sin, and you can do the same knowing that you have an ever-present Guide to light your way and to keep you from falling. His power is lying dormant within; dormant, not dead. Christ in you is the most powerful of forces for effecting change in your life and in the lives of those you love.
May God bless you with the knowledge of the reality of His presence within you, without you, beneath you and above you. “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2:20
As seasons of life change, Elizabeth happily remains desperately dependent upon her God. Two of her four children have now branched off to begin their own families. She is a homeschooling veteran and a faithful wife of almost 30 years.