It's been heavy on my heart to be a Godly mother. I can honestly say it is one of the true desires of my heart, something I want to put my whole heart into. But how does one do that? Maybe to some the answer seems quite simplistic, straightforward and obvious. But living that out day by day is not. The decisions, actions, behaviors of a Godly mother and wife do not always come easy even when the answer is staring you in the face.
For me it's begun with a look at not what a mother is or should be, but how God views Children in our lives. Because maybe if I view children as my heavenly Father does, perhaps then I'll get a glimpse of what it is to be blessed with that awesome responsibility.
They are a responsibility, a fiscal responsibility, takers of your selfish time, dependents on you for everything, trouble, stress, an inconvenience at times, importers, leeches, hardships.......offensive isn't it? And yet these terms and hundreds others have been spoken by both Christians and secularists alike. This view is steeped in complete and utter selfishness. I think a view stemming from our turn in society, a turn towards selfishness covered over with the mask of "leaving a carbon footprint", "over population", "we can't afford kids".
Some give advice or silent opinions and think it's Godly, "Well you should decide how many kids you can afford and then stop." or "The Good Lord has given you some beautiful children but you know, the Good Lord also gave you some sense in that head to know when to stop!" Or jokingly they remind you of their quite childless homes that they "get" to return to, the free-time they have, the extra money they have to spend on pedicures and massages. The snide comments about one of you "getting fixed" as if we were stray dogs.
But what does God say about children? How does He view them, view you and me, since we are HIS children. Throughout scripture it is CLEAR that God views children as a blessing, a joy, a benediction from the LORD to grace our lives with fulfillment, meaning, happiness and satisfaction. Parenthood is God's gift to us!
"This is true even in a fallen world, infected with the curse of sin. In the midst of all that 's evil, children are tokens of God's lovingkindness. They are living proof that God's mercy extends even to fallen, sinful creatures." ~John MacArthur
The Lord is the source of children, even Eve recognized this and regarded her children as a gift and as an emblem of God's grace to her. The running theme of scriptures is non other than children being a blessing from the hand of a loving and merciful God. Children signified blessings from God and they STILL DO. Despite over population, despite your income, despite your belief! The are designed to bring you joy, happiness, contentment, satisfaction and love.
"Behold, children are a gift of the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one's youth. How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them; they will not be ashamed when they speak with their enemies in the gate."
Did you catch some of that language?
Blessing:: a special favor, mercy, or benefit, a favor or gift bestowed by God, thereby bringing happiness, the invoking of God's favor upon a person.
Reward:: honor: bestow honor or rewards upon, benefit, strengthen, support.
God's rewards of children are not necessarily based on your actions, though I think they can be as we see in scripture. But he rewards those who are non believers as well, those who abuse and mistreat children. But that is not what His blessing is meant for. God has the power to open and close wombs, to create life and take it. It's all in His hands whether you use the best birth control or non at all.
It's up to us as parents to view children and handle parenting with correct Biblical perspectives in order to fully enjoy the benefit of those responsibilities. If you are a parent, you know there is NO love like the one you have for your child. Nothing can even compare or come close to that type of love, that depth of love. I LOVE Dave, I've never loved anyone as much as I love him. We share a blessing and a bond I don't think many married couples do.
But the love we have for our children, is unexplainable to those who don't have children. It's not even in the same ballpark as the love you feel for your spouse. It would be like explaining a rose to someone who had never seen in their life. Oh sure you could come close and they could touch and smell and get an idea of what it was like, but they will never fully know what you are describing.
Suddenly as a parent, you understand a little more the Love God has for us, His children. The heartache and joy we give him. You understand a little more why he would have any desire to save us, to extend his mercy and Grace upon us when we clearly don't deserve it. I see glimpses of that everyday in my own relationship with my children.
For me the making of my own role as a mother has to start here, with viewing what God has really blessed me with, and how I will respond to that. To gain a right perspective of what these little souls are in my own life, help drive the way I then respond and treat them. When I am failing to view them the way God does, I allow behavior in my own life that is unworthy of that blessing. I am often amazed and literally cry out to God and ask Him why? I don't feel worthy to be a parent. It's the hardest job I've ever done, hands down. But if I could just see my children the way God does, as His inheritance!!!! Than maybe making those daily decisions to treat them as rewards, as gifts, as precious will come easier.
Because it isn't easy....it's almost never easy.
John MacAurther has some very deep and important thoughts on the subject.