If you love Me, you will keep My commandments. I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever ... In that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you. He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me; and he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and will disclose Myself to him. ~ John 14:15-21
A sweet mom wrote me a letter this week and said that she and her friends had been reading through Ministry of Motherhood together. She said they really enjoyed it, but it was a little overwhelming because it felt like I was always so positive about my children and that I always loved them. Then she asked if I really always felt that way.
Of course not! We all go through seasons where we wonder if some of our children came from another family. Sometimes we have feelings that suggest we are not really a good mom because we don’t even like our children. And sometimes we just wish we could escape.
I learned very early in my Christian life about the concept of obedience. God asked me to obey Him with my heart and Jesus said, “If you love Me, you will obey Me.” So, obedience is out of love, not feeling. Many times, I would do the right thing, even though my feelings didn’t match. In other words, I knew it was right to “act” in a loving, patient manner towards my children. Or I knew that God wanted me to “respect” Clay–even times when I did not feel like it! But because I wanted to love Jesus, I would obey. What I found out is that my feelings would follow. In other words, the more I obeyed the Lord in serving my children and encouraging them, the more of an investment they became to me, and the more I cherished them and began to see just how important children are in God’s economy.
Growth is a long process. My deep love and reverence for these children has grown after many, many years of cherishing them–sometimes because I truly loved and enjoyed them–and sometimes purely out of faith. But, as I have said before, as in a garden, whatever you water and nourish the most in this garden of life is what will flourish. If you water the garden of family and children and love and life-giving and beauty, it will grow and flourish–it is a long-term work.
I have a special treat for you! My sweet friend Misty Krasawski, who is also our Community Director at MomHeart Online, is launching her new blog called Encouraging Beautiful Motherhood today! We did an interview a few weeks ago as part of her online mentoring program, Titus2University, and she's making the audio available today as a free download. She also has some wonderful giveaways and I think you'll enjoy her site so please go say hello, download our chat and take a look around!