When I first started my blog, I had the intention of sharing truths that I was reading and studying in the Bible. I wanted to be able to open up conversation about the topics that we tend to gloss over as Christians or the verses that we try to make fit into our cultural world view as opposed to letting the truths change our views. Although the focus of the blog has changed alot (Yay, God for showing me His plan and using me in this way :)), I still hope to be able to talk about the tough stuff!
This past Mother’s Day had me really thinking about how our culture defines what it means to be a mother and what it means for those who are not yet mothers. My sister and I have talked extensively about how we feel that the day has become kind of an awkward holiday. In an attempt to include everyone, we make posts on social media about mothers and non-mothers alike. I think that the heart behind it is kind and sensitive, but subconsciously it shows how we feel about motherhood.
Doesn’t our need to include everyone in Mother’s Day make it seem like mothers are the cool clique? It’s like we feel sorry for those who haven’t joined yet, because we see that as the ultimate achievement and desire, and if you haven’t reached that, then you are lacking. Or maybe we are the ones feeling sorry for ourselves? Are we desiring children, so much so that we fail to see and value all that the Lord has promised to us?
When we really think about it though, we can’t really blame anyone. Our idolization of motherhood makes sense when you realize what society tells us about it.
- “There is no greater love than that of a mother and child.”
- “The most important job in the world is being a mom.”
- “Motherhood is the highest calling.”
- “When you become a mother you will understand ________ .”
But do these statements fall in line with what the Bible says?
“If you want to be my disciple, you must hate everyone else by comparison–your father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters–yes, even your own life. Otherwise, you cannot be my disciple. (Luke 14:26)
“Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?’ And stretching out his hand toward his disciples, he said, ‘Here are my mother and my brothers!’” (Matthew 12:48-49).
“Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel,” Jesus said, “who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life” (Mark 10:29-30).
I’ll be honest, these are some harsh verses to read. But I think they sound so harsh because they are so counter to our culture. I love the way John Piper explained it when he said “Jesus is turning everything around. Yes, he loved his mother and his brothers. But those are all natural and temporary relationships. He did not come into the world to focus on that…. We need to reorder our world…” He also mentions that we need to see relationships as God sees them, that “marriage and family are temporary and secondary and the church is eternal and primary.”
Are there any parts of your world that you need to reorder? If Jesus didn’t come to focus only on that, then we shouldn’t either. We tend to let the world tell us that we are “less than” because we haven’t had a child and let the world convince us that we will be “better than” when we do have children. I pray that if I ever have children that I put them in the right place of significance in my life. I pray that I won’t get my validation from being a great mom on my good days and I won’t feel like a failure of a person on my bad days.
Has the world made you feel like a dried up tree? I remember an awkward convo one time where a friend said she wanted to have all her babies before she turned 30 to prevent any special needs issues. Picture me over here in the corner counting on fingers, thinking “Nope, that is not going to happen for me.” At times, I would stress that I was getting old and my eggs were going to dry up. I wondered how I would feel if I couldn’t “be fruitful and multiply”. You start to feel like you may be missing out. But that was silly thinking. God has shown me a few things.
1.) I know that with God all things are possible. If it is something He wants for my life then He is more than capable to bring it about. And if it is something that He doesn’t want, then I ultimately don’t want it. 2.) Having children is not the only way to “be fruitful and multiply.” We see so many times that when Jesus speaks, He speaks on a heavenly and spiritual level, while everyone He is speaking to is listening on an earthly physical level. I believe that the most important “multiplying” we can do is making disciples and bringing them into God’s family. 3.) I must look at children the way that the Lord does and put them in the right order of significance and importance in my life and view them in light of eternity. My desire for children should never be greater than my desire to serve the Lord and follow His plan. And my ultimate confidence should not come from birthing and raising a child.
It can be so easy to KNOW the truth, but not necessarily to live it out. These verses in Isaiah tell us that the childless one (let’s just replace eunuch with childless, huh?) who pleases the Lord, will have blessings in Heaven that far outweigh the blessings of children on earth. He will have a legacy that will endure forever, not a family tree that will end with the earth. It seems like a pretty basic concept to get… Heaven stuff is better than earth stuff. But do our actions exemplify that we really believe that?
My desire with this post is to present the Word and let God use it to speak to and challenge you. Let the promises of God dictate how you view motherhood and every other thing we come across. Ask Him if it is possible that your view of motherhood is based on what the creation has been feeding you instead of the Creator. What I have been finding, the more I read the Bible, is that the things of God are radical and they will turn everything we know to be true from this world on it’s head.
So let’s chat. If you agree or disagree I want to hear from you!
Do you think our worldly view is skewed compared to the biblical view of motherhood?