What Matters Most:
Mama’s A Hot Mess – Most Of The Time
If you’re looking for a blog that is written by a soft spoken, even keeled, gentle heart…then let me warn you that you’ve stumbled onto the wrong blog. Not that I can’t be those things, sometimes, if I try hard…Just consider yourself warned.
For many years I thought it was more spiritual to try to be that way…but God made me bold, creative and just a bit sassy.
Let me just say…that if following Jesus, and raising up children that love the Lord, is supposed to look like a “HOT MESS” then I truly have it mastered!
On days that I am feeling overwhelmed, which is most days, the dialog in my head goes something like this: “IF I was doing this “Christian Parenting” thing right or was more of a Godly women, or was soft spoken and spiritual, it would not be so chaotic or seem so stinkin’ hard all the time.“
Ever been there? That’s where my brain likes to live in the land of “You are not enough!”
Those are the days when I need a little bit of coffee AND a whole lot of Jesus.
I thought there would be so much more peace, joy and harmony in our home and that the kids would be forming life long friendships…instead of forming alliances. Um, yeah, you read that right.
I thought that I would be this happy, skinny (lets not even go there) Mom, content to be home with all those adorable human beings, that rise up and call me
blessed Mom…instead of the burping, farting, running through the house screaming and jumping over ottomans in a single bound, easily mistaken for barbarians, that currently have taken over live in my home…and incessantly call me Mom.
I should make it clear that these behaviors are of the male children in the home…not the young ladies. Which takes me back to my single days when I envisioned a dreamy life of raising girls.
side note: I find it very hard to believe that I will miss this some day!
Back to my point…I said rise up and call me Mom because ain’t nobody at this stage in the game rising up and calling me blessed. See Proverbs 31:28. Probably because I’m not even trying to rise while it is still night…I’m actually crawling into my bed when I should be crawling out…sigh…the joys of teen talks after midnight!
So, what are we as Christian Moms called to do?
Is this really what Motherhood is supposed to look like…because I did not sign up for this!
What truly is good enough? We all want to hear when we go before the Lord “Well done good and faithful servant!” but most days I wonder why on earth did He give me all these kids to care for? Clearly I’m missing the mark.
Why do I feel like such a failure when I have given so much of my heart, energy and life to raising up these kids in the way they should go?
When should I hug it out instead of grounding them? You know, show them mercy or “Book “em Danno!” I just don’t even know anymore.
Here’s the thing. I’ve come to accept the fact that my head has been lying to me all these years. The picture in my mind of how life as a Christian family is supposed to look is truly not my reality.
I’m not going to get all “churchy” or legalistic and list out all the things that I think we should, or shouldn’t be doing, as Christian parents, and quote a bunch of bible verses…I just want to speak from my heart to your heart…Mom to Mom.
Honestly, I never thought that my kids would have done half of the things they’ve done over the years …because… I had this Christian parenting thing down. I knew how to help them make wise choices…and yet I have had some pretty hard things to walk through with my kids. Hard situations that have brought me to my knees, pleading for wisdom on how to reach my kids and how best to love and guide them.
I often search my heart and think through my “stellar” parenting moments. All the years that I have tried my best to lead, love and teach my kids to do what is right.
I can’t help but ask myself “Am I to blame for their hardheartedness and rebelliousness?”
Many years ago I would have said emphatically “YES!”
…insert my younger, judgemental, know-it-all voice here…
“Parenting is all about being involved, sheltering and disciplining well. If you do it right, they will turn out right. No kid of mine would ever talk to me like that or ….”
It’s like making a cake from scratch. Follow the directions and it will turn out perfectly, right?
But that is not Biblically sound thinking.
Unfortunately, there are no guarantees. The bible does not say that if you win a few battles when they are young that you will have their heart, they will rise up and call you blessed and turn their hearts to God.
Read more: Our Story Begins: Forgotten Moments
Now please, do not get on your “biblical high horse” and start throwing scriptures at me…I know that there are bible verses that you can quote that refer to parenting…but the truth is that there are no magical formulas that can guarantee that all of your children will be saved and be delightful children or adults.
Life is far more messy than that. For you, for your children…for all of us.
God never meant for us to try and come up with some legalistic plan of action, nor write a boat load of parenting books on how to “Raise Up A Child” so that we can follow steps 1-10 and secure a place in heaven for ourselves or our children.
That is not faith…that is works…and works is not what the gospel is about. It is a relationship not some set of rules.
God is a God love, mercy and grace, forgiveness and second chances.
Yes, being a Mom requires a lot. It is the most draining, self-sacrificing, humbling, thankless job we will most likely ever be called to do…but I also believe that it will come with the biggest rewards…even though we fail daily.
Motherhood oftentimes requires more than what I have to give…Thus my need for Jesus…and coffee.
This parenting thing is not easy…but in the end it is what living out the gospel is all about. Messy, far from perfect and dependent upon Him.
I think the most important thing to keep in mind is that in Christ your best is enough. Only He can do the heart work.
As a Mom of 21 years with 10 kids…all still at home…sigh…Lord bless…
I want to encourage you to…
Be real with your kids and seek to build a relationship of trust with them,
When in doubt show mercy and kindness,
Point them to the cross,
Listen more than you talk,
Pray hard, show grace, love much…and pour yourself another cup of coffee!