Being a mother is undoubtedly one of the things that has been a tremendous source of joy in my life. It is also one of the things that has been a source of anguish and has driven me to tears some days. There have been times when I have found myself shaken to my core with feelings of inadequacy and insecurity. If you saw me, you probably couldn’t tell because I put that picture perfect smile on (you know the one) and kept my head up high – acting like nothing was wrong.
Motherhood is not for the faint of heart. And despite all of the gorgeous Pinterest pictures, there isn’t much that can prepare you for the journey. Many of us look to our own mothers for motherhood encouragement during the difficult days. Others may look to women in the church or friends for words of wisdom. These can all be great ways to get some advice on what to do for a colicky little one, sleep training or handling toddler meltdowns. But the truth is, we all will be gripped by these feelings of inadequacy.
We will all find ourselves questioning if we did something right or second guessing our choice of words. via @MrsAngelPenn Click To Tweet Being a mother is JUST PLAIN HARD at times.
Mary, the mother of Jesus and wife of Joseph, may not be someone that you think of when you start looking for examples of motherhood encouragement. After all, she was a very young girl when she found out that she would supernaturally become pregnant and carry the Savior of the world. Yet, like most of us, Mary’s journey is not totally unlike anyone else’s. We can look at her story – and the truths found in God’s Word for motherhood encouragement.
I want to share five takeaways from Mary’s life and story that have inspired me.
A mother is brave.
This young woman demonstrated unparalleled bravery when she heard and accepted the angel’s message by saying, “… may it be to me as you have said” (Luke 1:38). But did she understand what she was agreeing to? Not the fullness of it, I’m sure.
Like many of us, she wasn’t sure what was ahead. Although Mary knew what had been revealed to her, others around her and Joseph had not. It is not unlikely to think that others would have thought that she was not being truthful about how she became pregnant. Joseph could have suffered ridicule and backlash. Mary could have also or worse.
Instead of being fearful of what was happening, Mary took solace in God. She was certain of Who held her future in His hands and walked in it. Mary was a woman deeply admired for her bravery and loved for her unwavering devotion to God.
Be open to the unpredictable.
Ok. Can we just stop for a moment here to talk about this? Mary was a very young mother, a teen mother in fact. She was also engaged to be married. Can you imagine how she felt when the angel Gabriel from the Lord appeared and told her that she was going to carry baby Jesus? Talk about not being on your radar? That would have been enough for me to have felt honored at first and then plunging into all kinds of fear, apprehension etc…at the very thought of what I had been told.
It had to be a shocking and fearful experience.
“Do not be afraid, Mary; for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb, and bear a son, and you shall name Him Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David; and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and His kingdom will have no end” Luke 1:30-33
One thing about God though is that you can always count on Him to make sense of the unpredictable. Isn’t it wonderful that we don’t have to figure it out?
There is strength in being vulnerable.
There will be times when society wants us to think that it is a sign of weakness when we admit that we are struggling. It’s not good to need help. After all, women are tough – we should be able to handle just about everything that comes our way.
However, there is a quiet strength in being vulnerable. At times where we may feel weakest, there we will find His strength. One thing that has been a tremendous blessing to me as a mother is the community of other women that have come alongside me in this journey. Some of them mothers, some not. They have walked with me, encouraged me and been the hands, feet and heartbeat of Jesus when I needed it most.
Trust God with the results.
Mary is the only person who was present both when Jesus was born and when he died on the cross. How heartbreaking it must have been for her to see Him suffering for a cause so much greater than what any of us could imagine. Knowing that God’s plan was perfect and bigger than her, it must have been difficult to not question God as to why it had to happen the way that it did.
As a mother, I will be the first to say I mess up. A lot. Some days more than others. But you know what, I have a heart that longs to please the Lord in all that I do. I give heart and soul day in and out training my children. Character building is not always easy. Right now, we are in the middle of a challenging season with my youngest son. And truthfully, some days I don’t see the results that I want to. You may not either.
Your child may not respond in the manner in which you want them to. But the thing is we don’t have to carry the burden of that. When we trust God with the results, we release all of that into His care.
He can do a much better job of refining our children that we ever could.
Above all, walk in faith.
The battle for our children is real. As a mother, we do our best to raise the children that God has entrusted us with. We have good days and bad days. If we are honest, sometimes, some are really bad days. But God is faithful. He already knows what we will encounter before we do. He has the answers to any problem or challenge that will arise. Can I trust God to work out every problem I encounter if I submit myself to Him? Absolutely.
The ultimate source for motherhood encouragement is walking with God. His Word reveals timeless truths and demonstrates His faithfulness to get us through difficult times over and over again. We can trust Him to see us through each and every time.
Don’t miss the rest of the posts in this series, click here or on the image below, to get to the landing page.