Are You a “Joyful Mother of Children”?

“Who is like unto the LORD our God, who dwelleth on high…He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the LORD.”  Psalm 113

I love the nuances of Scripture, giving us glimpses of God’s heart and clues for the way we are to embrace life. 

Are you a “joyful mother of children”? 

We certainly don’t want to pretend that we never get frustrated as mothers, that we never feel exasperated, or irritated, or tired.  But those feelings should not define the bulk of my existence.  God’s created order (all things being as they ought), gives us the privilege of being “joyful mothers”! 

I was walking through Wal-Mart last week with Avi (7) and while we were just chatting amid the ordinariness of grocery shopping I thought to myself, “I just enjoy her…thank you Father, for these sweet relationships with my children!”

I am striving to make those “irritated motherhood moments”–moments when I’m usually just in sin over my reactions–less and less, and celebrate more the joyfulness of mothering my children.

Joyful mothering should identify us as followers of Christ!  It’s one of those “shining lights before men” when others see the warmth of friendship and love between parent and child. 

It’s why I cringe every time a believer light-heartedly jokes about the “burden” of children.  If our children truly do seem a burden to us, might I suggest that something else in our lives is amiss?  Such attitudes ought not characterize the people of God.

We are to be “joyous over our children”…let it be so among those who call him Lord!


32 Responses to “Are You a “Joyful Mother of Children”?”

  1. Taryn says:

    This reminded me of a Christian movie I saw the other day- Hidden Secrets(2006) with John Schnieder. He made me laugh and a woman with child(King James Bible) character in it did as well. It’s called a dramadery. A friend recommended a “Christian” movie I did not like at all(hated, detested) called, “To Save A Life”. I mailed it back to Netflix as fast as I could- wanted it out of my house.

  2. Terri says:

    This is just beautiful! A few years ago I did a search through my Bible on the word “joy” and wrote all the verses down – my hand ached for days after that (just to give you a hint how many there are). I love my children but so desire to “enjoy” them. Sometimes I feel like I do all the teaching and training and everyone else gets to enjoy them. We must purpose to joy in them – to live deliberately!

  3. Of course you would post this blog today as I am having a rough day. 🙂 Thank you.

  4. Narelle says:

    I am most certainly working on it! Most of the time I am successful… too many aggro mums out and about and I don’t want to be one of them!!

  5. my mom has commented on how much i enjoy my children. parenting is challenging, especially when i don’t feel well which is all too often. but they are such interesting, funny, fascinating little creatures that i am honoured to raise. it’s a scary job, especially as i desire to raise them well, but i am blessed to see how much they love God, how receptive to his Word they are even when I’m not the perfect parent.

  6. LucyT says:

    Being joyful over my children is one thing I can say I am truely good at.I have been told by other mothers it is unnatural for me to find so much joy in them.My eyes light up when I see them and a smile spreads across my face.I just can’t help it.I have GREAT kids.God has blessed me.If only I never had to clean up after the stomach flu.

  7. LucyT says:

    Kelly, you have beautiful kids.I was just looking at Ashtons art he really seems to be growing in that gift.I think all of it is so good.VISION is really good as is PRINCE CASPIAN.

  8. Kelly,

    When I read the portion of that passage, “He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children” it means even more than being a “joyful” mother to me…. just even having the opportunity, as a “barren” adoptive mama, to BE A MAMA at all! I’m so thankful – and joyful! – to even have been given the opportunity to raise my two precious blessings as godly seed unto Him!

    Loved this passage ~ it ministered to me ~ thanks for sharing. You always inspire 🙂

    Jaime @ Like a Bubbling Brook

  9. Genieve says:

    I want to thank you for your blog. It is such an encouragement to me.
    I just received the MP3 of The Baby Conference in the mail yesterday… I can’t wait to get started 🙂

  10. Ericka says:

    I love that verse! I think it often gets missed that just as it is God that makes the barren woman to keep house, it is God that makes a mother joyful! It is HIS work in our hearts that rid us of the muck that gets in the way of enjoying our children: pride, selfishness, priorities that are out of whack (which usually results in some form of idolatry), etc. Just as a barren woman cries out to God to fill her womb, this fleshly mother cries out to God to make her JOYFUL!

  11. Dellaina says:

    Thank you so much for this! It’s an issue close to my heart.

    I am the (grown) child of a woman who considered her children as burdens. I won’t bore you with the many ways she communicated this feeling. But I can tell you that now, at 40 years old, one of the last things I want to do is spend time with my mother. It is a daily struggle to overcome the feelings that knowing how she felt has deeply ingrained in me. I am now having to force myself to honor my mother. It is a daily struggle. Confession: sometimes I honor her by simply answering the phone when she calls. It is all I can muster.

    I make sure to hug my children and tell them how much I love them, like them, enjoy their company. Even just a simple smile when they walk into the room… my mother never smiled at us. And I don’t think I ever remember her pulling me into a “just for grins and giggles” hug.

    So thank you for this post. I appreciate it so much!

    • Charity says:

      I know exactly where you are coming from. I grew up in a very abusive home and was I constantly reminded of what a burden (“curse”) I was. I am always reminded that the Bible says to honor them, but gives no condition of what type of parents they were. So it helps me to think *I am doing this unto HIM*. Because of the abusive situation, I and my children are not around them. So I try to call every few weeks to check on them, even though they aren’t generally interested in talking to me. I also send cards on Mother’s/Father’s day/birthdays/anniversary/holidays, although I struggle finding anything to write in them. It is a tough spot, and I have to bring it to the Lord daily. Sorry to ramble. I will pray for you as you are in a similar situation too. Thanks for leaving that comment…in a way it encouraged me 😉

      • Dellaina says:

        Thank you for your prayers, I covet them. I just prayed for you! God is faithful to bless us when we obey, right? And we are to obey, even when we don’t *feel* like it, right? That’s what I tell my children so I’m trying to walk the talk. 😉 But oh, it’s so difficult sometimes.

  12. Charity says:

    What a wonderful reminder to us all. Kelly, that picture of you and your daughter is just precious…beautiful…both of you!

  13. Teri Miller says:

    Amen & amen! Even in the frustrations of day-to-day life, my children continually point me to the Creator, sometimes with sighs-of-resignation…but more often than not, with laughter & enjoyment. Thank you for the reminder to delight, delight, delight in my seven children!!

  14. Thank you for this today. I have been totally convicted of being irritable and resentful lately in my mothering. I can not seem to keep up around the house and I feel like no one “pulls their weight…” yada, yada….all that to say, it is simply MY bad attitude. Thank you for this reminder. I know there are many things in our schedule that need to GO – I want to enjoy my children the way I always have, but ever since we adopted a baby 6 months ago, the spiritual attacks have been relentless — and I have been snappy with the other kids and really just not joyful. I am going to choose joy, starting today!!

  15. Kelly L says:

    I think I have it easy because I have one gift from God and no more. But because she is in such pain throughout the day, I sometimes get resentful or just plain sad because I am serving her in a manner that one serves a 2 year old (I try really hard to make sure she does not see this.).I do blow it with a poor me attitude, but I have to remember that people wish they had a kid like mine. Full of love, conviction, mercy, righteousness. One who listens to God and obeys Him in the face of ridicule. She loves God when she is in pain and things do not go well. SHE is and example to ME. I must remember I am serving God in serving her (and anyone else). I resolve, more than ever, to find joy in being in the place God has given me while praying for the next level.

    • Avaya says:

      Kelly L,
      Does your daughter respond well to massage?
      I am studying herbal medicine and would like to see if I can help/point you in the direction of people who may be able to help, since I am in a different country.

  16. Jamie says:

    Thanks for sharing such lovely and honest words. I was convicted of something similar when a friend without children was listening to me describe a difficult evening and said “Just one more reason not to have any.” Whew! May my witness never, ever, lead to that kind of thought ever, ever again. It’s made me more careful about my thoughts, actions, and words regarding the blessings my children are.

  17. Taryn says:

    I ask my granddaughters(2 and 18m.),”Who does Jesus love?” and “Who do I love?”. They answer,”Me!” (Our youngest granddaughter is 9m.). I was raised in an abusive home. Then I read Titus 3:3,4(King James Bible) and pray for my estranged extended family. The joy of the Lord is your strength(Nehemiah 8:10). I love that verse- I had 6 children(4 sons, 2 daughters). My oldest daughter, Jessica(28), has autism spectrum and recently moved into a group home. My youngest daughter, Angela(20), has Type 1 diabetes-since 5- and gets sick often, mostly during the night. She just had a high risk pregnancy and a gorgeous baby(9m). We can’t let anyone or anything rob our joy.

  18. Missy says:

    Thank you for this article! I just found out that I had a miscarriage on Friday and you posted this exactly when I needed it! I have one son, 2, who I need to remember to be a joyful mom to, even in the midst of our loss. Thank you again for your encouraging words!


  19. R. F. says:


    Thank you for the reminder! I always try to make sure I have a cheerful attitude when I am out in public especially. I want people to see that children are a blessing, but how would they if I’m not showing them? So I put on a smile, even on my bad days, and let strangers know I find JOY in mothering!

  20. Hayley Ferguson says:


    I’m sorry for your loss. I ahd a miscarriage between no four and five and I would always pray “Lord please never let that happen to me, I couldn’t handle it”. But you know, I did when it happened. I cried out with a cry I’ve never before or after cried, if that makes sense? But even though it’s now just a sad thought, somedays I find joy in that I know that that baby is waiting for me and my husband when we “get there” at least one of our children will be in eternity with us we can be sure because children belong to the Lord. Hopefully and by His grace our other children will join us too. I hope over time the Lord heals your heart and helps you to “grieve not as the heathen do” and you find comfort in Him.

  21. Taryn says:

    Is that last quote in the Bible? I couldn’t find it in the King James Bible. I know Jeremiah 10:2-4 where it talks about the Christmas tree or the “Jeremiah” tree as some Messianic Jewish believers call it. I had 2 early miscarriages but they were painful and I felt a deep sense of loss. has interesting holidays’ info- scroll down to the Believer’s Corner. lasttrumpetministries has online tracts and has info as well. Jeremiah 10:2- “Learn not the way of the heathen…”(KJB).

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  25. 6 arrows says:

    Very nice verse you quoted, and this that you said about it: “I love the nuances of Scripture, giving us glimpses of God’s heart and clues for the way we are to embrace life.” Yes, definitely agree. What a blessing how God works joyfulness into our mothering. This post put a smile on my face tonight, thinking of the Lord’s faithfulness.

  26. […] practical ways we can mother joyfully.  I thought this post would fit perfectly on the heels of “Are You a Joyful Mother of Children”.  Enjoy the free printable she offers to hang up on your […]

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