March 29, 2016
Where Does a Mom Go to Resign?
“And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.” Galatians 6:9 (ESV)
It started out as an ordinary spring day. Outside, the sun shone brightly, warming my kitchen counters through the window. Inside, however, the temperature was chilly. (And I don’t mean the thermostat was set too low.) My normally cheerful spirit had glazed over into a wall of ice and anger. I’d finally had enough. And so I snapped.
My emotions snapped.
My self-control snapped.
And — most visibly — I snapped at my three children.
“Ugh!!!!! You kids get out here right this minute!” I hollered from the living room, tagging on a warning, “And I don’t mean maybe!” All of a sudden, it was the 1980s and I heard my own mom’s voice coming out of my mouth. I vowed I would never say, “And I don’t mean maybe!” Yet here I was not only breaking that promise, but other vows as well.
I’ll never scream like some parents do. I’ll gently explain.
Our family won’t have anger issues. We’ll be loving and kind.
That morning, my well-intentioned plans got chucked out the window as I let my angry words fly. My kids’ crime? Simple childhood irresponsibility.
My youngest had abandoned his action figures and plastic building blocks in the living room, right where this unsuspecting mom would step on one, barefoot.
My second child had tracked in mud from the woods. Somehow — despite being told umpteen times — he just couldn’t remember to remove his boots in the garage before entering the house to show me the latest creature he’d caught.
And our kitchen was a total disaster after yet another one of our young teen daughter’s kitchen concoctions. She loved creating recipes. Unfortunately, what she didn’t love was cleaning up the mess left in the wake. And on the counter — in the midst of the mess — were two permission slips she needed, now spattered with batter.
I was tired of trying to teach my kids to be responsible. I wanted to officially resign from being a mother. Without even giving two weeks’ notice!
When my temper simmered down, I apologized to my kids. But I didn’t let them off the hook. We talked about their lack of follow‑through, their messes and the resulting mayhem that drove their mama nuts! We all vowed to try harder and to speak kinder next time.
Bringing up children is not for the faint of heart. Day after day, we must instruct, encourage, correct and supervise. And then? The next day, we must do it all over again. For years and years … oh my!
Yes, motherhood is hard work. But it is also good work. And today’s key verse says this about good work, “… let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9).
See those last four words? Do. Not. Give. Up.
Mom, don’t turn in your resignation just yet. You aren’t finished. There will be a harvest … in due season.
My children are all over 18 now. I’ve had a little time to observe the harvest. And I see that it is true — we reap a harvest when we don’t give up.
My toy‑building, critter‑catching boys each have jobs where they are responsible, and they now clean up after themselves very nicely. My daughter uses her culinary skills to bless others and even fills out her own mounds of paperwork in a timely manner as a small business owner.
Eventually, our children acquire the skills we attempt to teach them. Not overnight, but in due season. They will learn to keep a house. Make a meal. Take care of a business. Not only will they survive, they will thrive.
So hang in there, mom. Keep doing the good work of motherhood. Don’t grow weary. Mothering matters. Not only to your kids, but also to God.
Father, please grant me a fresh perspective and renewed energy to persevere in the high calling of raising kids for Your glory. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
James 5:7-8, “Be patient, then, brothers and sisters, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop, patiently waiting for the autumn and spring rains. You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near.” (NIV)
2 Thessalonians 3:13, “And as for you, brothers and sisters, never tire of doing what is good.” (NIV)
For more encouragement as a mom, check out Karen Ehman’s new book, her blog today.
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
In what areas of motherhood do you tend to grow weary, tempting you to give up? List these on paper. After each area, list a possible result of you refusing to throw in the towel and instead being diligent to persevere as a mom.
© 2016 by Karen Ehman. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
630 Team Rd., Suite 100
Matthews, NC 28105
Originally published Tuesday, 29 March 2016.