Sunday, October 2, 2011

Some thoughts on mothering

My best friend from 10th grade had twin baby girls in August. She has a 4 year old, a 2 year old and now newborn twins.

Her hands are full. And so is her heart.

And she is doing an amazing job!

We had a little baby celebration for her the other night. We chatted, we ate and we held her five-week-old twins!

I shared the following with her that night:

Deuteronomy 6:5-9
"Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates."

That passage is quoted often and as parents we hear it frequently. It gives us important direction in raising our children and teaching them about Jesus. In my mom's Bible, they present a unique reminder about this passage that I'd like to share with you:

"If it were important, I would have remembered it" is a big fat lie we tell ourselves. Our abundant use of sticky notes, electronic organizers and calendars on the refrigerator attest to the fact that we function best with constant reminders. When God first gave instructions to the Israelites, he knew his people would need daily reminders. The most important information is not absorbed instantly - it is steeped into our heart through repetition. Today, tell your children again about God's wisdom and love. They need to be reminded as much as you do."

We are told as followers of Jesus to spend time regularly with God. Scripture is clearly telling us that our children need to be taught about Jesus regularly as well.

Our most important role as a mom - the best thing we can do for our kids - is to impress upon them the Word of God and the love of Jesus. At meal time, bed time, bath time, dressing time, cooking time, playing time. Our time with God shouldn't be limited to a short devotional in the morning or evening...but rather small moments all throughout the day.

Pray daily that you would love God more, love your children more and that they would love God more.

It's easy to be overwhelmed as a mom with young children. But if nothing else gets accomplished in your day except telling them repeatedly that Jesus loves them unconditionally, that's all that matters. Then you can lay your head on your pillow at night, and even if there are crumbs on the floor, piles of laundry to wash and dirt in places you don't even want to think about, you can rest assured because your children know about the love of their Savior.

Don't ever let the world tell you mothering isn't important. It is one of the most important jobs in the world - to raise the little people in your home to know and love God in a personal way.

Every night when I put Samuel and Lauren to bed I pray according to Deuteronomy 6 that they would love God with all their heart, all their soul and all their strength. What better prayer is there to pray as a mom?

I'd like to conclude with these powerful words from Growing Grateful Kids:

"We have this one life, this short time on earth to make our mark and to make life count. We have these children in our care for a blink of an eye. Now is the time to be engaged and fully present. Now is the time to seek divine insight into God's plan for their lives. Now is the time to rise up and be the parent that we might train our kids in the way they should go.

We are not alone. Not be a long shot. Yes, we have a seemingly impossible task before us, but we have Christ within us, and the heavens cheering for us. We can make a difference in this world! We can do ever single thing God asks us to through Christ who gives us strength. Nothing is impossible for us! It doesn't matter that our society has fallen to an all-time low; in fact, this is the perfect time to rise up and be blessed. God's promises are as true as they've ever been. His call to live an otherworldly life is as real as it has ever been.

Will it be easy? Absolutely not! Will you cry yourself to sleep sometimes? That's certainty. But would you want to be anywhere else? I hope not! God has ordained you and appointed you to bear life-giving fruit, and to leave an impact on this earth that lasts long after you're gone. Your children are part of that fruit. Invest in them. Teach them about this living, breathing God we serve. It's not enough to being them to church on Sundays and to get them to youth group on occasion. That won't be enough in the days ahead. Go after Jesus in your personal life. Live with breathless expectancy and marvel at everything He does. Because everything He does is worth noting.

Share what you learn with your children. Let the joy of your faith journey deeply impact kids. Teach them not about rigid religion; teach them about love. And forgiveness. And faith. And hope. Help them inherit the idea that, truly, nothing will be impossible for them if they will humble themselves before the Lord.

Cast a vision for what is possible for those who believe. Read stories of some spiritual greats who have gone before them. Tell your children that god wants them to change the world, because He does, you know. Never allow your walk with Jesus to become rote, or an ought-to, or a should-do.

Life with Jesus is unequivocally a get-to."

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