Dear Moms, Jesus Wants You to Chill Out

I didn’t write this.  A husband wrote it – one who has the presence of mind to see that one-up-manship is killing Moms.  He is right…. I am reposting because many of you will not catch the article on Facebook.  Read on:

“FACT: If your children can’t read by age four there is a 95% chance they will end up homeless and on drugs.

FACT: If your children eat any processed food there is an 85% chance they will contract a rare, most likely incurable disease, by age 12.

FACT: If  you’re not up at dawn reading the Bible to your children, you are most likely a pagan caught in the clutches of witchcraft.

FACT: If your children watch more than 10 minutes of television a day there is 75% chance they will end up in a violent street gang by age 17.

Obviously, the “facts” listed above are not true (at least, I don’t think they are). But, I’ve noticed that the Internet has made it much easier for people, and moms in particular, to compare themselves to each other. Now, just to be clear, this is not a post against “mom blogs”, or whatever they’re called. If you write a mom blog, that’s cool with me. This is a post to encourage the moms who tend to freak out and feel like complete failures when they read the mom blogs and mom Facebook posts.

Moms, Jesus wants you to chill out about being a mom. You don’t have to make homemade bread to be a faithful mom. You don’t have to sew you children’s clothing to be a faithful mom. You don’t have to coupon, buy all organic produce, keep a journal, scrapbook, plant a garden, or make your own babyfood to be a faithful mom. There’s nothing wrong with these things, but they’re also not in your biblical job description.

Your job description is as follows:

  • Love God. This simply means finding some time during the day to meet with the Lord. It doesn’t have to be before all the kids are awake. It doesn’t have to be in the pre-dawn stillness. Your job is to love God. How you make that happen can look a million different ways.
  • Love your husband (unless you’re a single mom, of course). Your second job is to love and serve your husband. Husbands are to do the same for their wives, but that’s for a different post. If your husband really likes homemade bread, maybe you could make it for him. But don’t make homemade bread simply because you see other moms posting pictures of their homemade bread on Facebook.
  • Love your kids. Your calling as mom is to love your kids and teach them to follow the Lord. They don’t need to know Latin by age six. If they do, more power to you. But that’s a bonus, not part of the job description. Your job is simply to love your kids with all your exhausted heart, and to teach them to love Jesus. That’s a high calling. Don’t go throwing in other, extraneous things to make your life more difficult. If you want to teach your kids to sew, great. But don’t be crushed by guilt if your kids aren’t making stylish blazers by the age of 10.

Moms, Jesus want you to rest in him. He wants you to chill out. His yoke is easy and his burden is light. Don’t compare yourself to other moms. Don’t try to be something God hasn’t called you to be. If the mom blogs are making you feel guilty, stop reading them. Be faithful to what he has truly called you to do, and know that he is pleased with you. When your kids are resting, don’t feel guilty about watching an episode of “Lost”, or whatever your favorite show may happen to be.

Love God, love your husband, love your kids. Keep it simple and chill out.”  – Stephen Altrogge

What Are You Repeating?

Then the Jews who lived near them came and told us ten times over, “Wherever you turn, they will attack us.” – Neh 4:12

After discouragement came the next enemy from within the ranks – FEAR.

True – there was a death threat issued (4:11) and the possibility of an unseen enemy sneaking inside the walls and killing workers was real.

But repeating the issue ten times over?  Really?  Someone who should be on your own side has suddenly become part of the opposition!  Family members and close friends are famous for this kind of behavior…

Outside Jerusalem concerned mothers and relatives were stressed and afraid and they ratcheted up the fear factor by repeating over and over again the danger the workers in Jerusalem faced.

But everyone is saying….  Haven’t you heard… Don’t you know… It’s not good… You should stop… Come to a safe place… Why are you being so insistent, so hard-headed… It’s dangerous for crying out loud!

Kelly Minter calls them “ancient-day re-Tweeters of Sanballat’s threats”.

She also writes, “I believe the Jews from the surrounding areas were loving and concerned citizens, but they had lost sight of what was most important: the successful rebuild of Jerusalem.  Even well-meaning people can unintentionally draw us away from God’s will in our lives.”

Discouraging words may be true.  You must choose what to do with them.

Who is repeating discouraging messages to you?  Stop listening to them.

Are you repeating discouraging messages to yourself or others?  Stop re-tweeting what is not helpful for building others up. (Ephesians 4:29).

Let us not lose our focus on the things we are called to be doing.

Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfector of our faith… “Our great and awesome God” as Nehemiah called Him.

– Nehemiah, a Bible study by Kelly Minter.