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Life Lessons That God Has Taught Me Through My Motherhood Journey
Growing up I always looked forward to one day becoming a mother. One of my favorite childhood memories was role playing being a mother to my eight favorite dolls. For some reason, eight was the magical number of children I wanted (even though I had many more dolls than that). I’d get lost in time for hours on weekends playing with them - doing all of the “motherly things” that I’d learned from my own mother to do, like talking with them, feeding them, brushing their hair, and taking them on stroller walks in the park. During those walks, I’d watch and admire the interactions the mothers had with their children and I’d daydream about how much fun it would be to one day step into that role. Bliss, bliss, bliss was all that I had in my mind!
Then – years later – it was my turn. Soon after getting married, God blessed our union with a beautiful baby boy! He was an adorable sight to behold- everything that I’d hoped and prayed for. The miracle that I’d always prayed for.
Leading up to his arrival, I’d served as a Sunday School teacher for preschoolers. I’d volunteered as a youth camp counselor for years during summer camps. I’d served as a youth mentor to middle and high schoolers throughout college. I’d babysat the children of my friends. I’d read book after book while pregnant about giving birth and becoming a mother. I’d watched numerous “nanny shows.” And, of course, I’d spoken with my own mother, grandmother, and aunts about motherhood.
I’d prepared my son’s nursery and made sure that his clothes were labeled and organized, I was organized with systems and timelines, and we had regular nap times (both of us!). I was ready for his arrival! I was ready to step into my new role as a mommy.
Or so I thought!
In retrospect, I was not prepared for what was in store! As a matter of fact, I was totally overwhelmed. Never in my wildest dreams could I have imagined how my motherhood journey would unfold. To be honest, it was everything – and nothing – like I thought it would be.
God molded and shaped me in many ways I never expected. In doing so, I learned many life lessons along my motherhood journey. Here are just a few of them.
Being a Perfect Mom is a Fallacy
"Indeed, we all make many mistakes. For if we could control our tongues, we would be perfect and could also control ourselves in every other way." (James 3:2)
The first thing I learned early on as a new is that all my preconceived notions about motherhood are false. The TV moms (and even my own mom) made motherhood look easy. But, in reality, being a good mother takes a lot of work. And even still - despite the hard work - things may not always be perfect. Kids may sometimes stray or disobey. You may be late getting dinner onto the table consistently on time. Your house may not always be spotless. Most likely, you will be dead tired by the end of the day. And the list goes on. Additionally, if you're a new mom, you may not even get to enjoy the luxury of a good bubble bath for years to come!
Trust me, these things come with the territory. We've all been there and done that! Like you, I've made my fair amount of mistakes during my motherhood journey. Many of them – and so will you! The sooner you learn to be ok with this fact, the better off you will be. The best thing you can do is be your very best - and let God do the rest. Be kind to yourself. Give yourself grace. Learn from your mistakes. And love your children unconditionally. One day, you will look back on the memories and will laugh out loud as you reminisce.
It's Very Important to Rely on God For Direction and Guidance
"I will instruct you and teach you the way you should go; I will give you counsel and watch over you." Psalm 32:8
Like many moms, I have a plate full of obligations.
I’ve always known that I should rely on God, but sometimes I try to take on the world on my own. I worry unnecessarily. I consume myself with uncertainty. And through the chaos of motherhood, I just sometimes fail to just stop and give all my cares and worries to God. Increasingly, He has helped me to lean into him more than ever - and to look to Him for direction and guidance. While my time and energy are finite, God is infinite. Though I am weak, He is strong. Through Him, I can do anything.
Trust God In All Things
Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding, In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths. (Proverb 3: 5-6)
While I’d like to schedule every minute of every day, motherhood keeps me busy in taking care of my kids. Since I can’t control my children or what they need from me, my days rarely go as planned.
I also can’t control the future no matter how much I want to. Loving our children comes with vulnerability— and with that vulnerability comes fear. To overcome that fear, we need to trust God with what we can’t control.
Motherhood has helped me to acknowledge that God is the only one in control. And since He is good and all-powerful, I should trust Him.
Recognize That Motherhood is a Ministry
To whom much is given, much will be required. (Luke 12:48).
It took me almost to adulthood to realize that motherhood is a ministry. Yes, being a mom and raising up godly children is fulfilling the ministry that God has for me right now.
The Bible says that we are to seek wisdom and train up our children in the way of the Lord. We are responsible for teaching our children about our Heavenly Father, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and how to live Godly lives.
I’m so grateful to be the vessel that God chose to bring them into this world and I do my best not to take it for granted. It’s an absolute honor and a privilege to be a mother.
Accept That Everyone's Motherhood Journey is Unique and Special
Yet you, LORD, are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand. (Isaiah 64:8)
Each mother has a special and unique journey. From beginning to end, each day brings with it highs and lows, tears and fears, and celebrations and disappointments that we must navigate with respect to our own families. We can not and must not compare. Each step along the way may be different, but the end goal is the same for us all - to raise decent human beings who love and honor God.
We must stay encouraged and not compare ourselves to one another. Much like a potter is intentional about every pot he creates, so is God! Intentional. Just like our children are unique - so too are we! Unique. Exactly like Jesus had a purpose for coming to this world. So do we. Each one of us is made for a purpose. The creator of the entire universe intentionally made each one of us so unique that we have different fingerprints! (How's that for attention to detail?!)
I could go on and on but these are some of the life lessons that motherhood has taught me. Remember, life will have it’s challenges as a mom, but this is the best role that we will ever have in our lifetime!
Enjoy the journey!
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