Sunday, May 8, 2011

My Mother's Day Pledge

On Mother's Day I can't help but think about what kind of a mother I am and how I can be a better one. I rediscovered a "mother's pledge" of sorts that I'd come across years ago. Since then I've had it taped on the inside of my bathroom cabinet doors (which I promised in a recent post that I will open for your curious eyes one day). Because I "see" this printout every day, I don't really see it anymore - it just blends into the background. But being Mother's Day, it caught my attention again today.

This is not something that I wrote, rather I stole it from someone else. If memory serves me correctly, it came in an email from Proverbs 31 Ministries but I can't remember specifically who wrote it - otherwise I would give credit where it is due. Regardless of who wrote it, I found it very inspiring. Oh boy do I fall so short, but it is something to aim for, to aspire to. I wanted to share it for all the other moms of young kids out there who may also find it convicting and inspiring. I need to daily ask for God's wisdom, strength and guidance as I feebly attempt to renew this Mother's Day Pledge:

I will put my Bible before the television, computer, music, telephone, and other books, for my children will know my priorities by the way they see me spend my free time.

I will make my prayer requests known before God and my children, enlisting their help in the process and informing them of the outcome, for by letting them help when I petition our Lord, they will learn of a living God who answers prayer.

When times of crisis, conflict or confusion arise, I will hit my knees before I hit the phone or keyboard, knowing that by my example my children will discover that although friends are important, God alone is the one who holds the solution to life's every problem.

I will erase the words "luck" and "lucky" from my vocabulary and will instead by my speech point my children toward the One who orchestrates every detail of our lives and brings all good things to pass, for by this my children will learn of an all-knowing, all-powerful God.

When bad things happen, I'll neither grumble or complain, but will instead help my children see that in the scope of our lives even bad times are allowed for a reason, for by this my children will learn quiet trust in their Maker.

When normal childhood mishaps occur, I will remember that although difficult, it is still easier to remove grape juice from the beige couch than to erase harsh and unloving words hurled at a child whose chubby fingers have failed her, for by this my children will see a God who understands when our best efforts fall short.

When my children have witnessed something ugly in me - unkind words, an angry temper, "harmless" gossip, biting sarcasm or a "mommy pout" when things don't go my way, I will confess it as sin before them seeking their forgiveness, for by this my children will develop the much needed habit of wiping their spiritual slate clean before God and man.

I will teach my children the importance of cleanliness and order while at the same time remaining sensitive to the fact that a skinned knee or hurt feeling is more important than a spotless floor or uncluttered counter, for by this my children will learn to value people above things.

I will make time for the lonely, the sick, the elderly, the difficult to love, and will bring my children along, for with each afternoon visit, each meal delivered, each ride to the doctor, each raked lawn or washed window, they will have opportunity to serve Jesus by serving "the least of these."

I will make our home a haven of rest and retreat from the outside world and a welcomed place for my children's friends, for with each impromptu backyard soccer game, each video viewed on a rainy day, each cup of hot cocoa or chocolate chip cookie, my children will have opportunity to practice the art of Christian hospitality thereby learning to share all God has given them.

I will by my actions and my speech let my children see a mom love their dad, for by this will my children sense family stability at a time when marriages all around them are crumbling.

I will not require of my children obedience, honesty, patience or kindness without first being willing to submit to the same rules whether in speech, in miscounted change from the store or when answering a toddler for the fourteenth time, for by this my children will see a mother who is also learning and not a perfect parent to whom they'll never measure up.

In all things remember that more is caught than is taught.

There are little eyes upon you, mom. You are the first Bible your children will ever read.

Feeling like a horrible mother right now? Every time I read it I am so humbled and reminded of how far off the mark I am. But then it inspires me to get back on track and to again ask God for the wisdom and patience that only he can give to be the mother he wants me to be.

This just happens to be one woman's own pledge of sorts that she shared but I found all parts of it worthy of aspiring to. I'll admit I've tweaked it slightly to better fit me personally, but I've decided I'm going to use this as a starting block to write my own personal Mother's Pledge. I will take much of this content but also change a lot and add some things. What would you add to this list? Do you have any motherhood goals or pledges that you would share for the benefit of others? Please comment with them here or contact me. Thank you and Happy Mother's Day!

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