I remember clearly the momentous day when, deep in the weeds of Toddler Parenting, I realized I could do everything “right” and still end up with a wayward child. I could wear out a blender pureeing fresh veggies. I could teach and expect obedience, model polite manners, sing hymns at the breakfast table, and diligently foster reading readiness, but my little bundles of DNA were free to throw all those advantages to the wind, squander every opportunity for success, and reject a godly lifestyle.
Fast forward twenty something years, and I’m grateful that not one of my worst nightmares came true. (One of the greatest gifts of being a pessimist is hardly anything ever turns out as badly as I expect it to…) However, I’m well aware that you may have a different and more disappointing story.
Mother’s Day next week is, for some women, an endurance contest in which you straighten your shoulders, lean into stiff-upper-lip mode, and soldier through the day. Perhaps your own mother was not present for you, either by choice or by hardship, and your heart still aches. Have your kids made choices you can’t endorse (or even imagine)? Do you have regrets about your own mothering story and long for a relationship with your son or your daughter, but the distance widens as your hope wanes?
God, the Disappointed Parent
Let me remind you that God also has sat in the seat of the disappointed parent. With him, you need not pretend. God knows your heart, understands your sorrow, and God is the one and only person who can stand beside you with full empathy.
If you are dreading Mother’s Day this year, remember that God also has sat in the seat of the disappointed parent.Tweet
No Condemnation and No Magic Formula
Understand, first, that your story for Mother’s Day 2021 need not be condemnation or shame. At the risk of prescribing medication for a heart condition I barely understand, may I suggest that this Mother’s Day can be a new beginning for you as you commit yourself to focused prayer for your children?
No matter how you feel about your own parenting or how well (or disastrously!) you were parented, you can sign on as your own children’s chief prayer warrior. I’ve created a resource to help you get started with biblical prayers for your kids. Straight from my own prayer notebook, these are the requests I’ve been carrying to God for my own sons for over twenty years.
We will begin by asking God to rain righteousness on ourselves and our children! He’s the source of all that’s good, and apart from him, there is no salvation, no godly family line, and no growth in grace.
“Shower, O heavens, from above,Isaiah 45:8
and let the clouds rain down righteousness;
let the earth open, that salvation and righteousness may bear fruit;
let the earth cause them both to sprout;
I the Lord have created it.”
Understand, second, that there is no magic formula, no set of words to “guarantee” our kids’ safety or spirituality (see paragraph one above), and yet I have found praying the words of Scripture for my children guards my heart from asking for scorpions and stones that look to me like fish and bread in the moment.
Free Printable for You
Complete the form below to receive the free Prayer Warrior Challenge Printable in your email inbox. Want to know more about me before you sign up? We can get acquainted here where you can even listen in on a podcast interview where I talk about my family and life here on the hill.
Remember, as your son or daughter’s mum, you are in the perfect position to pray for them. Make this Mother’s Day a new beginning in your mothering life. Take the challenge and commit to praying for your children every single day!
Grace be with you all,
Praying the words of Scripture for my children guards my heart from asking for scorpions and stones that look to me like fish and bread in the moment.Tweet
Stumped in your search for a Mother’s Day gift for your mum, mentor, daughter, or favorite aunt?
The Joyful Life summer issue on Rest is now available for pre-order, and the single issue (or an annual subscription) is a thoughtful remembrance that lasts. Click here to subscribe or to check out their shop, which is full of gift ideas and resources to enhance your own walk with God.
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