Parenting is hard work.
There were times when I questioned if all I was doing was worth it.
The fruits of my labor were absent.
I was tired. Worn out. Weary in my parenting.
Was anything I modeled and taught sinking in?
Let alone, so often I felt like I was failing as a parent. When I compared my parenting style to another mom, I would always fall short. Always.
Thoughts of “I’m ruining my children,” and “They are going to be scarred for life” were present in my mind often.
Now my children are almost 21 and 18. Almost.
I look back at those younger days, and goodness, what I wouldn’t have done to have had someone come alongside of me back then to encourage me. To tell me to hang in there. To infuse hope in my heart that the work I was doing as a mom was worth it. To help me understand the seeds God planted through me as a mom were being rooted in my children’s hearts. Deeply rooted. And to encourage me to keep doing what I was doing.
Sure, my husband did a great job of that, but when you’re up to your elbows in diapers, and Legos, and preteen emotional outbursts, it’s a gift to have another mom come alongside who understands because she has been there.
Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6
I also appreciate The Message translation:
Mom, Dad don’t lose heart. What you are doing to raise your children right is making a difference. The words you say. The steps you make. The time you take to teach, to train, to model, to equip. All is worth it. All of it matters. Even if the fruits of your labor are absent.
Continue to point them to Jesus, and to God’s Word. Continue to point your children in the right direction. The fruits will appear. God is faithful to help them stay on the right path.
Keep doing what you’re doing. You are making a difference.
And one more thing. Don’t believe the lie that you’re not a good enough parent, or that you’re not as great as so-and-so. No one could be a better parent for your child than you. No one. Trust God in that, and seek His wisdom and understand. He’s equipping you to be the mom and dad He wants you to be.
As I look at my children today, the fruits of my labor are evident. I see them making choices that glorify God. I see them look to Him in their times of trials. I watch them succeed in small victories in their faith and in their lives. No, they aren’t perfect, and they still mess up (like us all). But I can celebrate what God has done and is doing in their beautiful lives, and how God has used me as their mom.
Great job, Mom and Dad!
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