As we begin this journey together, I want you to know where I started as a mom. I didn’t start out as a can-do mom with can-do thoughts and can-do kids. No. Those whiny give-up attitudes my son displayed in yesterday’s devotion were inherited from me. I was quite familiar with the sidelines of mommy life, where I would often stand and declare “I CAN’T.”
I was discouraged.
Once my kids became toddlers who would not listen to me and obey me like robots, I panicked. I looked at other moms who seemed to know what they were doing. They enjoyed being a mom. Me? Not so much. I would often wonder, “What is wrong with me? Their children listen when they tell them no. Why will my child not keep his hands to himself in the grocery store or the toy isle? Why didn’t someone tell me this would be so hard!?”
I felt like a failure.
I compared how I felt on the inside to how other moms looked like they had it all together on the outside. My feelings of inadequacy and thoughts of insecurity were held up in comparison to moms who dressed their children in matching outfits and adorned themselves with attitudes of grace and wisdom. I wondered how in the world they pulled it off with a smile? I could barely get a shower, get my kids dressed and get us out the door before lunch!
I wanted to quit.
One day I came home from running errands with two whiny toddlers. I put them down for a nap and searched for pink construction paper so I could write “I QUIT” on it. I was going to hand my “pink slip” to JJ when he came home from work that day. It was just too hard, and I was tired of feeling like I would never measure up as a mom.
And that’s where I started.
I didn’t really start being a mom until the day I almost quit. Because that was the day I fell on my knees before God and choked out the words, “I can’t do this.” And it was as though He bent down on His knees in front of me and spoke into my heart and said, “You are right, Renee. In your own strength and through your own perspective, you cannot do this. But I am here with you. And with my grace, my mercy, my promise, my presence, my power – with ME – all things are possible. You can do this through Christ – who will give you strength!
That day became a beautiful picture of Psalm 18:35 for me, “You give me your shield of victory, and your right hand sustains me; you stoop down to make me great.”
No matter where we are in our motherhood journey, this can be our new starting point. Let’s acknowledge together that on our own we’re a mess, but with His gentleness, grace, wisdom and guidance, we can become the mom He calls us to be; the mom we want to be; and the mom our kids need us to be.
Father, give us your shield of victory as moms, and protect us from discouragement. Extend Your right hand to sustain us; you grace to strengthen us; and your wisdom to lead us. Give us your thoughts and your ways that are not naturally our own. Thank you that through your Son, you not only stooped down to make us great, but you came down to make us great because of Your great love for us. We love you, and we begin this journey not looking back, but looking up and looking forward to where you will lead us one step at a time. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Copyright 2009. Renee Swope – All rights reserved.
Today we’re giving a copy of Angela Thomas’ best-seller “My Single Mom Life”. It’s a great book whether you’re single or married, offering encouragement and wisdom all mom’s need. From mommy guilt, living with integrity, setting healthy boundaries, lonely mom syndrome, living the amazing life God has for you and your kids each day, Angela covers it all. I am reading it now and loving it! Winners will be drawn from today’s comments. Be sure to include your email address so we can contact you if you win the give-away.
All winners will be announced Saturday morning. And don’t forget, each Friday we’ll be giving away two tickets to the D6 Conference. So be sure to come back for more encouragement and resources from D6 and Proverbs 31 Ministries! If you’d like to get a reminder each time I post, be sure to click on bloglines in my sidebar.