Friday, May 27, 2011
You are not God, You're a Mom!
A few days ago I posted this thought on facebook: In the toughest season of my life, when I thought I had ruined my children forever in neglect, with no extra money for tutoring or child care...God showed up!!!!They passed their standard exams with some of the highest scores in their class! That's the power of God through Jesus! Whoosh! Do I have a testimony! I'll take that testimony to the old school days! Moms don't fret; God can show up when you can't! This post received thirty likes and twelve comments, most of which were written by other moms whom I believe stand with me in agreement in celebrating my children’s success in spite of the hardships I experienced throughout the year.
But I suspect there are more moms like myself who have experienced many hard, gut wrenching life experiences while at the same time trying to nurture their children. Can we possibly do both? Nurture our children while living through whatever life has to offer.
Our children doing well in school and in life seem to signify many things to us moms. Often times their success seem to have a direct correlation with how good a mom we are. And on the other hand, our children’s failures seem to also expose the most dreaded insult, that we’re terrible moms. What a burden to bear? So let me get this straight, God has given us children so we can gauge how good or bad of a human being we are. Yeah I know, it sounds ridiculous when I phrase it in such a way. But it doesn’t matter how I phrase it, it’s a ridiculous thought process that mostly operate in the subconscious. How about the women who have no children, are they any gooder or badder (yeah I know those aren’t words but you get my drift)? How are they supposed to gauge their significance as a human being?
Side Note, I do believe there are psychopathic moms who either harm their children, or put them in harm’s way and have committed terrible crimes to their children, I’m not referring to those moms. I’m talking about the 98% of moms in the mainstream population.
You see the reality is every human being, under this side of heaven, has a need that can only be fulfilled by One. But we start off not fully knowing that, so what we do is to try to be fulfilled by these other things; a job, a husband and the less fearful, more natural relationship, our children. If truth be told, children seem to fulfill that void. They love you unconditionally, they make you laugh and they seem to have the ability to say the most perfect thing at the right time.
But moms, I want to help free you up and hopefully you can start moving towards taking the load and pressure off of developing the perfect child. The fact is: YOU ARE NOT GOD! Let me say it again, YOU ARE NOT GOD! Our children already have a God watching over them, they don’t need another one. Whether they turn out to be the president of the US, a successful businessman, drunks, abuse drugs and God forbid fall into same sex relationships, YOU DO NOT control those outcomes. You are raising children not robots. Only with robots you can insert a specific type of information and wait for the desired outcome. With children, you can do everything “perfectly”, perfect school, perfect neighborhood, perfect home, healthy two family home environment and they may still end up in rehab. While others may make all of the "wrong" parenting choices; wrong neighborhoods, wrong schools, single parent home, works many hours, moves around a lot and they may end the president of the United States. That makes no sense whatsoever right? How does that happen? Why does that happen? I really don’t know. However the reality is you cannot predict how your children will turn out. You cannot start programming them for a specific career or way of life because in the end you may be disappointed. If you can’t control or manipulate your children into being what you want them to be. If all of that is true, then what exactly is our job as moms?
Over the years I’ve realized my job as an effective mom has had a lot to do with three things:
1) Pray for your children daily! Over and over again, the Bible instructs us to ask for wisdom if we lack it, James 1. I have prayed psalms 121, 91, 23 over them as they leave my presence and into the world.
2) Encourage them daily! My children have had great influences around them, aunts who would often tell them that they were geniuses. And for the past year God has placed in my heart to constantly remind our boys that they were created for greatness. If there’s nothing to encourage them about, make something up. Just encourage them daily and do it often.
3) Tell them you love them daily! I can’t tell you how important it is for your children to hear that you love them daily. Even when they don’t respond back, say it anyway.
Now these things again won’t guarantee you great and perfect children. The outcome, you will never know but in the present just love them and love them well by taking your hands of control off of them and hand them over to God. You are not responsible for how they turn out; you are responsible for how well you love them. Now I’m not perfect at any of this but I am in process. I am in the process of finding freedom as a mom and for my children.