~ A Message for Dads on Mother's Day
Have you ever noticed how God has given mother special abilities? For instance,
He gave them built-in lie detectors - they can cross-examine better
than the best lawyers! And everybody knows mothers are equipped with
eyes in the backs of their heads - as well as super-sensitive hearing.
Mom's Job - Difficult
God gives moms special abilities, because their job is so difficult
and so important. Whether they're stay-at-home moms or employed outside
the home, whether single moms or step- moms, mothering is hard work.
One mom got tired of people thinking she had an easy life so she wrote
this job description:
"I'm a wife, friend, confidante, adviser, lover, referee, housekeeper,
laundress, chauffeur, interior decorator, gardener, painter, dog groomer,
manicurist, barber, seamstress, manager, financial planner, secretary,
teacher, disciplinarian, entertainer, psychoanalyst, nurse, public
relations expert, dietitian, chef, fashion coordinator, family letter
writer, travel agent, speech therapist, plumber and auto maintenance
expert. In all of this I am also supposed to be cheerful and radiant."
That's a lot of stuff! Imagine a "help wanted" ad for the
position of mother: "Wanted: Someone to do all the tasks listed
above, plus, be on call 24 hours a day, with no days off, no sick
leave, no pay package and no pension. Must have infinite patience,
top-flight nurturing skills, boundless energy, and inexhaustible love."
That's a very difficult assignment!
Mom's Job - Important
God gives mothers special abilities because their job is so important.
Mothers are cutting-edge leaders in human-development. They are moulders
of human beings. The nurturing they provide, love they offer, encouragement
they bestow, teaching they do, dreams they instill, values they impress
- all are critical to the future of our world.
The world's high achievers point to their moms as
being key influencers in their lives. Lincoln said: "God bless
my mother. All that I am, or ever hope to be, I owe to her."
Edison said, "My mother was the making of me." Napoleon
wrote: "The future destiny of the child is always the work of
the mother." Mothers make a significant contribution to parenting.
Mom's Needs - Relevant
Let's look at six basic needs of mothers identified in a survey of
mothers of pre-school children. Moms will agree that they apply to
1. The Need For Significance
Mothers often ask, "Does mothering really matter, am I really
making a difference?" Because society sends signals that mothering
doesn't matter, moms need to hear that what they're doing is important.
Mothers play a critical role in the emotional, physical, psychological,
and spiritual development of their children. Mothering matters because
it is the pivotal role in society. It's a calling, a responsibility,
and an honor! Moms have every reason to feel good about who they are
and what they do.
A mother's job is even more important, since the walls that protected
children in the past are crumbling: walls of community, family, extended
family and local church. So God says to mothers, "Love your children
as I love you." He's the great example of unconditional love.
He loves us simply for who we are - His children. We did nothing to
earn His love, and can do nothing to keep it. Even when we aren't
worthy of His love, it remains.
What mothers do is important, but real significance does not come
from what we do but who we are, which leads to the next basic need.
2. The Need For Identity
When moms ask, "Who am I, really?" they are expressing loss
of identity. They may see themselves as extensions of their children.
They may feel that they do not exist except as someone who meets the
needs of others.
As fathers we should help our wives understand that their identity
and value as a person extends beyond the role of motherhood; that
they are unique individuals who are prized and valued for who God
made them to be. The Bible meets the need for identity. God says we
are unique and fearfully and wonderfully made (Ps.139:14). In fact,
we were created in the very image of God almighty, and He loves us
unconditionally. That gives moms value, purpose and identity. God
doesn't love them for how good they are as moms; He loves them because
of who they are.
3. The Need For Intimacy
Mothers said they have a fundamental desire to be understood and accepted
for who they are. This is a huge need, especially for mothers of pre-school
children. Often, their biggest struggle is with loneliness. They desire
to have intimate, grace-filled relationships to sustain them.
4. The Need For Instruction
Most women come to mothering ignorant of what it means to mother their
children. Not only that, but during the early stages of mothering,
they also lack information on how to manage their time, how to stay
on top of the finances, and how to understand their value and identity
Mothers need input from other godly moms who can share their insights.
Whatever the problem, another mother has already gone through it.
Tap into their knowledge and experience to make the road a little
God has the answer here too. The Bible is full of wisdom, insights
and practical principles for mothering. It's a lamp to illuminate
your pathways (Ps. 119:105).
5. The Need For Help
Someone needs to be a lifeline to mothers who feel like they're sinking
under the weight of their responsibilities. The problem is that most
moms shrink from even asking for assistance, afraid that asking is
admitting failure. Or they compare themselves to moms who appear to
be making it on their own, and they feel guilty for wanting assistance
themselves. We have to offer to help in specific, sensitive, non-threatening
ways. We need to become part of a network of helpers. It's wrong to
put all the pressure on moms. God is always there to help. Paul wrote,
"1 can do all things through Christ who gives me strength." And God
told him, "My grace is sufficient for you" (Phil. 4:13; 2 Cor. 12:8).
God's helping. We should too.
6. The Need For Hope
Perhaps the most important basic need of mothers is for hope, because
sometimes it seems there isn't any. At those desperate moments, she
needs hope. God can give her the hope of heaven. He can give mom hope
when everything seems hopeless, and He can be a constant source of
encouragement, strength, wisdom and guidance in the daily adventure
of motherhood. God loves mothers with an everlasting love and sees
them as significant and unique.
So trust Him implicitly for each day, love Him as only a mother can.
As you follow God, your children will follow you. Seeing God meeting
your needs will be the greatest life-lesson that you can teach your
What Others Should Do
Fathers, children, friends, brothers, sisters, parents, the local
church, and the community all need to encourage and support mothers.
We should think about ways to contribute to meeting these six specific
needs of the mothers around us. And then we should do something!
**********************Letter # 17 (11. 5. 2003)*******************