Boy Mum Raising Son with Solid Character

To the Boy Mum Seeking Hope and Help in Raising Her Son with Solid Character

I observed as my small grandson placed one hand on the door frame, shifted his weight to one foot, and then put the other small boot toe-down on the floor. Looking at his dad, he checked his hand position and then assumed the facial expression he deemed appropriate to the occasion, a conversation among “the guys.”

My grandson’s imitation of his dad is endearing, but it is also instructional. If you want to be like someone, even if that Someone is God, you study their actions and do your best to imitate and replicate them. If you want to be like God, and if God has revealed Himself through inspired writing as One who values and embodies particular qualities, then you have your marching orders.

Whenever I open the pages of my Bible, I read about real people and their encounters with a compassionate God who welcomes the shifty and the shy, the bombastic and the bumbler, the liar, and the lecher. Grace paves over some pretty rocky personal landscapes in both the Old and the New Testaments. Even so, scholars say that one of the strongest arguments for the reliability of the Bible is its apparent determination to paint every character with absolute truthfulness, celebrating their strengths and describing their obedience, while also faithfully detailing their weaknesses and revealing their failures.

Heroes of the Bible have feet of clay just like the heroes our sons and daughters flock to and admire in real life. Even the Marvel universe of heroes has clued into the dramatic impact of a hero with a few chinks in his armor. Allowing the Bible to speak for itself about the highs and the low points in the careers of biblical heroes lays a foundation of realism for our sons as they observe the lives of spiritual leaders, teachers, and family members who inspire them to do more and be better. 

I’m offering some cautionary words about how we handle the text when we teach our kids about heroes of the faith, so I’d love it if you’d join me over at the Joyful Life Magazine’s blog today. CLICK HERE to continue reading and to join the discussion with other mums whose goal is to nurture our sons to become men of character and action.

And I’m delighted to be sharing a resource geared specifically for boy mums today…

Examining the lives of well-known heroes of the Bible with our boys can help them to build courage and faith. It can also point them to their ultimate Hero and Rescuer: Jesus Christ.

And Now Let’s Talk Books!

I’ve raised four sons, and it was great–but it wasn’t easy. I can’t begin to imagine what it would have been like to have mothered four boys without the input and support of a caring and involved dad.

Because he was raised without that benefit, Roland Warren knows from experience that single mums face multiple daunting challenges. Since his journey to manhood required healing, forgiveness, and a good measure of grace, he has dipped into that reservoir to offer strong support to single mums. He serves as CEO of CareNet, and now has written Raising Sons of Promise: A Guide for Single Mothers of Boys.

A future full of hope and healing for families with an absentee dad requires processing the loss, giving and receiving forgiveness, and managing expectations going forward. Warren weaves present-day stories with the biblical account of Abraham’s life and the startling revelation that the father of our faith and star of the Hebrews 11 Hall of Fame was a pretty shabby father to his firstborn, Ishmael. Abraham’s rejection and abandonment shaped Ishmael’s life, and his mother Hagar’s too because she was saddled with a father-absent home and left with nothing with which to start a new life on her own

Hagar’s realization that God had not abandoned her, that God’s eyes had never turned away from her for a minute, is also the challenge for single mothers in 2022. Warren’s good work serves to validate the feeling of loss created by an absent dad–a loss for the mother and for the son. Statistics have been sounding the alarm for years to support the notion that an unhealed father wound follows a young man into adulthood and, unfortunately, all the way into another broken, fatherless home of his own.

The pressing challenge for a single mum raising a son on her own is helping her boy to “be what he did not see.” Raising Sons of Promise walks the fine line of speaking directly to the heart of a single mum, acknowledging her unique challenges, but in a male voice, as a witness to the role of the son of a single mum. Tough love is a connect-the-dots gift, enabling mums to see that their parenting, their personal boundaries, and even their dating habits will impact their sons’ view of marriage, fatherhood, and family life.

Whatever the backstory, raising a boy is a tall order for someone without Y chromosomes. Warren’s work provides a resource to help mums connect with their son, enter his world, and avoid some of the weightier pitfalls that come with the territory. Best of all is the reassurance that solo parenting never needs to feel entirely solo because of the God who sees, knows, and loves both you and your son and longs to partner with you in the work of building a man of solid character.

Holding You in the Light,

Raising a boy is a tall order for someone without Y chromosomes. @rolandcwarren knows from experience the challenges single mums face. #RaisingSonsofPromise offers hope for sons to become men of character and action. via @ivpress

Many thanks to InterVarsity Press for providing a copy of this book to facilitate my review which is, of course, offered freely and with honesty.

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I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program and an affiliate of The Joyful Life Magazine, two advertising programs designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees. If you should decide to purchase any of the books or products I’ve shared, simply click on the image, and you’ll be taken directly to the seller. If you decide to buy, I’ll make a small commission at no extra cost to you.

39 thoughts on “To the Boy Mum Seeking Hope and Help in Raising Her Son with Solid Character”

  1. We have a book here that was very popular called Raising Boys by Stephen Biddulph and another more recent one called Prince Boofhead by Michael Carr-Gregg (I adore Michael Carr-Gregg, all his books are brilliant) #Dreamteam


  2. Oh Michele! This is an excellent article, not just for moms of boys. We are not David…This was such an eye-opener remark for me. I will have to trust the Spirit to bring these truths to my kids as He has in a fresh way to my own heart today through your words. We have a hero. I need to learn to fix my gaze on Him rather than my own weakness…Thanks for all the work that went into putting these helpful words together!


    1. I enjoyed every minute spent researching and pulling this piece together. The opportunity to speak into the lives of boy mums through JLM has been a true gift–one I certainly did not foresee!


  3. What a precious image you paint of your grandson! I was talking to a mom yesterday; she has all girls and was remarking on how it must be hard to have all boys but I have nothing to compare it to and I KNOW that God knew what he was doing when he gave me my boys.


  4. I was a boy-mom who leveled up to become a man-mom. With both of our sons as adults, I pray for them even harder now because I have no control over what influences them. I do love it when they say things like, “Dad taught me well.” Or “Well, that’s what you taught me to do.” I continue to pray for the planted seeds of their childhoods to continue to bloom and be fruitful.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. …I helped to raise three children and am reminded of the saying, “give your children roots and wings.” As my 20 year old grandson leaves this week for Army basic training I’m having a bit if a problem with the wings part.


  6. Michele, there is so much wisdom in this post. Scripture provides us examples to learn and grow from. Each story reminding me to depend on the Lord, to keep my eyes on Him for all I need in being a mom and now a Mimi. It is only by His grace and mercy and I am so aware of this each and every day.


  7. This is a great post and so relevant for everyone working with children in whatever context. I think there can be a big tendency in children’s ministry to focus on being like Bible heroes such as Moses and David but we need to give the whole picture the Bible presents of God working through their weaknesses. I vividly remember the impact it had when I was about 8 and I first heard about David and Bathsheba – it was so shocking to hear about that when all I knew before was his victory over Goliath but it definitely got me thinking!


  8. This post is an interesting read and reminded me of my son’s growth from day one. Now, even I can’t imagine he is a big boy. They follow parents and I noticed they easily absorb what parents do. A lovely picture of your son and grandson.


  9. To err is human, to forgive divine. Humans make mistakes but we learn and we grow towards the light. As parents, we need to be honest that we don’t always get things right and that change is possible. Thanks for linking up with #DreamTeam


  10. Ah…raising boys!
    It’s such a joy, a challenge, a frustration, and a hoot! Often all in the same day!

    I love our three boys, but they have pushed me way beyond my comfort level so many times. And recently I have had God remind me often that it’s Him who is going to lead. I’ve done what I thought was best, and sometimes it wasn’t. I hope that sometimes it was, though.

    “Lord, please lead our boys. Please whisper to their hearts of what they know is truth, and don’t let the world steal them away from You. Thank you that You love them more than we even do. Save our children, is our prayer.”

    Blessings and thank you for writing this.
    Thank you for sharing it at the Sunday Sunshine Blog Hop 12!

    Ridge Haven Homestead


  11. Raising boys is not for the faint of heart! Thank you for this article, Michele. Also, thank you for linking up and have a great week ahead.


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