Category: motherhood

When Being at Church Hurts–Infertility

A beautiful, tough post from my cyber-friend, Jennifer:

“Some Sundays it’s hard to be at church. That may sound like a funny thing for me to say. Yes, I love Jesus very much. I love to worship Him and to be taught His word. I enjoy the fellowship meals, conversations and the love of my church. These folks are so dear to my heart. They are family.

So, what makes church hard for me? Babies. Little ones.”

Read the rest of When Being at Church Hurts



A Mother’s Work: Ministry is Not About Numbers (Just Ask Jesus)

Do not get sidetracked by numbers. Our Lord never did.

There are some fantastic ministries around, you know? And I’m beyond grateful for them. Those radio programs that reach the whole world, books and sermons and speakers who touch more lives than they’ll ever know. Praise the Lord for them. We need them.

And then I wonder if my work means anything.

Do you ever compare yourself?

If you are living a life of obedience, seeking to walk humbly with your God, your ministry is just as robust, just as meaningful as the famous missionary-biography you just read.

Jesus. Perfect. Missionary. The spearhead leader of a movement that would surpass any other religion. Let’s talk about his numbers:

One hundred fifty, give or take a few. That was the whopping number of followers He garnered while on earth. The man that performed miracles that have never been matched. The man that died and rose again.

He didn’t get caught up in numbers. He got caught up in walking alongside people. The word? Relationships.

I write here mainly to moms. If you are a mom, walking alongside people, building relationships, your ministry can be compared to the perfect Savior’s.

Don’t let yourself compare your ministry to anyone else.

And if God can take that handful of people Jesus poured into and multiply it to the ends of the earth, He’ll do the same with your faithful investing.

Tend your mission field. Build and invest and serve the people in your care. Teach them about the Father through your life. Mother with a generation vision. You have no idea what God is doing with your fish and loaves.



Obama’s Feminist Remark: It’s Not About Choice

You’ve probably seen the quote from Obama’s speech Friday but in case you haven’t, the statement that rightly has stay-at-home moms up in arms is this:

“Sometimes, someone, usually mom, leaves the workplace to stay home with the kids, which then leaves her earning a lower wage for the rest of her life as a result. And that’s not a choice we want Americans to make.”

He called for more taxpayer spending on preschool so moms won’t “have to make that choice.”

Besides some really obvious reasons this statement was so ridiculous, it disturbs me on a couple of levels.

Feminism Isn’t What They Say it Is

The leader of our country has just worn feminism’s true face, delivering a clear message to the young men and women at a college in Rhode Island (and everywhere): “It’s not really about choice.”

Feminism is an enemy of the traditional family and all that represents. Women may be technically free to make the choices they want, but women who choose home will be stigmatized more and more, as feminists (like our President) continue to belittle the role of a home-career.

Is it All About the Money?

From his statement, yes, apparently it is. And do you know why? Because somewhere, somehow, very slowly, we forgot how important it is for parents to invest in the lives of their children, that raising people is the most important job in the world, and that neglect to do so, deliberately and wholeheartedly, will bring negative consequences on all of us. So if it’s not important, why would any woman choose to do it when she could make money doing something important? It’s kind of a no-brainer.

The news is rife with a “world gone mad” and we scratch our heads and talk about solutions to crime and send police officers to school and implement “mass shooting drills” and the list goes on, and all the while, no one suggests that maybe, we should go back to the cradle and start honoring people-raising as a career and remind our young women coming up that they are the ones who can rule the world, and that is pretty important.

But feminism’s true face wants mammas and babies separated as soon as possible. Do you wonder why? Let me remind you that Hitler wanted the same thing. The earlier the state can get our children, the easier it is to make “good citizens” out of them. Nothing good has ever come of that.

But they can’t say that exactly so it comes out something like:

“You poor, underprivileged stay-at-home mom who has to clean up messes all day while other women are earning a paycheck in heels. Let me help you out…” Don’t buy it.

Obama, if he really cares about our nation and the people in it, needs to say,

“Sometimes, someone, usually mom, leaves the workplace to stay home with the kids, which then leaves her earning a lower wage for the rest of her life as a result. But there’s no better investment she could make for her family and for our nation. Thank you mothers, for trading a fleeting paycheck for the priceless investment of the next generation.”

I am mother, hear me roar.



Raising Children is a Terrible Waste of Time

I think I finally agree with the feminists that raising children is a waste of time. After all, anyone really can do it. So why not let a paid day care worker handle the messes, settle the squabbling, feed the babies, change the diapers and keep them happy so you can do something meaningful, contributing to society?

Few will come right out and say it like that, but they should. Why aren’t we being honest?

Motherhood isn’t treated like an important position-like a profession, because raising children isn’t important. And I agree.

In fact, raising children isn’t just unimportant, it’s exceedingly destructive.

What we should be doing is raising men and women. That’s real parenting. And that’s where we’ve missed it. Tragically. Monumentally. Ignorantly.

No one wants to raise children–and who can blame them? Raising children is cleaning up messes and never getting help. It’s settling squabbles and never seeing change. It’s changing diapers and laundry and preparing more food but it’s never more than that. It’s continually sacrificing for the needs of others with no reciprocating sacrifice and no reward. So we either hire someone else to do it, or we grit our teeth and suffer through it.

Now we have a crisis: a society raising children while few want to do the hard, but incredible work of raising people. Adults who will take our place as cogs in the wheel of life. Do you want to contribute to society? Every other profession pales in comparison to your contribution of raising men and women. Because everything depends on who we bring up to carry out life in the next generation. Everything.

We got so short-sighted. In our world of instagram, instant news and instant gratification, we stopped raising people because people take time and sacrifice and work. But maybe more than that, we lost our ability to look past today and saw just a child with demanding physical needs, and forgot his becoming a person–a person of strength and courage and wisdom and love and compassion (if that’s what we put into him)–and how much that involved and how much it takes mothers and fathers and family pouring into the life of another person to ensure that he really becomes a whole person.

Instead, we have generations of people who grew up and remained children. Adult-children who get mad and have never learned how to handle anger or love their enemies and so they walk into companies and open fire at their “play mates” that hurt them.


Adult-children who blame everyone but themselves when things go wrong, and who fully expect the government to fix all their problems because no one ever taught them how to handle life and difficulty and change. They never learned to take responsibility for their actions, and believe they deserve whatever they want.They were given everything except the few things they really needed so now they borrow money to get the things to fill the void.

We’re surrounded by grown-up-children who never learned to be content with simple things, to find satisfaction in hard work and enjoy the crowning sunset at the end of a long day.

We have adult-children who are having their own children and they don’t like them because raising children is frustrating and this cycle spins at dizzying speed and we are all paying the price.

Oh that we would find our love and zeal and passion for raising people!

Do you know perhaps the most tragic part of all? Since we don’t see past this temporal busy-work that goes along side of raising children into people, children themselves have lost their worth. We don’t value children because we don’t value the process of raising them into whole men and women.

But there’s hope. Change starts with you and me. It’s easy even for those of us who do value the work of motherhood to get short-sighted and forget to see the men and women in the faces of our children. It’s easy to forget the shaping of lives that goes on in the midst of daily life, the lessons learned at a thousand places in the day. Anyone can raise children, but only committed, devoted, my-life-for-yours parents can raise people who will contribute significantly to the human race.

And then we can rally around other young parents and remind them of the life-work of pouring into the next generation for all of our sakes.

The monumental happens in the minutia. Raise people.

(If you need to renew your vision, get When Motherhood Feels Too Hard. Short, daily snippets of powerful reminders of what this business of raising men and women is about in the dailiness of life.)



A Woman’s Function in Society From Home (G.K. Chesterton)

And here, Chesterton makes a profoundly important point, almost completely lost in our society, to our detriment. Oh where are the voices who will keep proclaiming the infinitely important work to do at home that cannot be done by another?

“Babies need not to be taught a trade, but to be introduced to a world. To put the matter shortly, woman is generally shut up in a house with a human being at the time when he asks all the questions that there are, and some that there aren’t. It would be odd if she retained any of the narrowness of a specialist. Now if anyone says that this duty of general enlightenment (even when freed from modern rules and hours, and exercised more spontaneously by a more protected person) is in itself too exacting and oppressive, I can understand the view. I can only answer that our race has thought it worth while to cast this burden on women in order to keep common-sense in the world. But when people begin to talk about this domestic duty as not merely difficult but trivial and dreary, I simply give up the question. For I cannot with the utmost energy of imagination conceive what they mean. When domesticity, for instance, is called drudgery, all the difficulty arises from a double meaning in the word. If drudgery only means dreadfully hard work, I admit the woman drudges in the home, as a man might drudge at the Cathedral of Amiens or drudge behind a gun at Trafalgar. But if it means that the hard work is more heavy because it is trifling, colorless and of small import to the soul, then as I say, I give it up; I do not know what the words mean. To be Queen Elizabeth within a definite area, deciding sales, banquets, labors and holidays; to be Whiteley within a certain area, providing toys, boots, sheets, cakes. and books, to be Aristotle within a certain area, teaching morals, manners, theology, and hygiene; I can understand how this might exhaust the mind, but I cannot imagine how it could narrow it. How can it be a large career to tell other people’s children about the Rule of Three, and a small career to tell one’s own children about the universe? How can it be broad to be the same thing to everyone, and narrow to be everything to someone? No; a woman’s function is laborious, but because it is gigantic, not because it is minute. I will pity Mrs. Jones for the hugeness of her task; I will never pity her for its smallness.” -G.K. Chesterton



Mom Life Hack: Teaching Diligence

“The plans of the diligent lead surely to advantage, But everyone who is hasty comes surely to poverty.” Proverbs 21:5

Moms freak out. I know, I am one. Some days it feels like there are 5,350 important things to do, all at one time. And homeschooling moms can feel like they have the weight of the world on their shoulders just carrying around the burden of educating their children, besides all the other stuff to do in life.

Sometimes I have to regroup and remind myself of the really important things in life. And there are quite a few. But when it comes to preparing my children for the future, I can simplify my efforts by going back to a few basic things, one of which is teaching diligence.

“Seest thou a man diligent in his business? he shall stand before kings; he shall not stand before obscure men.” Proverbs 22:29

In a word, Scripture says that a diligent man will be successful.

Diligence is concentration, thoroughness and persistence. And in a culture where instant, fast and easy prevails, diligence is hard to find, and harder to attain.

But we can be deliberate about diligence in our homes and put our children far ahead.

Encouraging them when they face a difficult task, requring them to redo a careless job and praising them for their perseverance are ways we can help them grow in diligence.

Also, begining early is important. Not only can we expect our young children to be diligent in an age-appropriate task, but they thrive on the realization that they are a meanginful part of the family.

My 3 year old wanted to help me with supper last night and cut up tomatoes. I first told him he would have to wait until he’s older because he’s too young to use the knife. But I remembered a dull point knife with just enough serrated edge to cut a tomato that would be safe for him and told him he could try. He sawed away, announcing to all his big brothers and sisters that he was helping make dinner. A small thing for sure, but I praised him for seeing the job through to the end and for his willingness to help and serve.

Limiting their entertainment has important consequences. First, it forces them to do things with their hands–an opportunity to perservere and to find reward in work and productivity. Also, it helps them develop a stronger and longer attention span. They will read more, imagine more, think more, create more and relate more when their access to entertainment is limited.

Teaching diligence doesn’t just set our children up for success though; it is one of the most helpful things you can do for yourself. If you take the time (and it does take time) to teach your children to be thorough and persistent, it will pay off for you down the road.

Little by little, daily reminders and encouragment and purposeful parenting will grow into big rewards for them and you.


 



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