3 Reminders for the Weary Mom

Being a mom can be hard. I’m only five months into this motherhood thing, but the longer I’m in the more I begin to understand what busy moms go through each day and what it really means when everyone tells you how sanctifying this new season of life will be.

Enter into our past weekend: I’m sick with some kind of stomach bug, my husband is away for work and ministry events, and my son becomes a feverish and clingy five month old who no longer cares that sleeping is actually a gracious gift from God. I would love to report that I handled everything with perfect poise and patience toward everyone around me. But it would probably be closer to the truth to say that, in fact, I was once again reminded that my sin runs far deeper than I usually care to admit.

When I feel out of control or when I don’t get the rest I think I deserve, I get irritated. I’m resentful. I want what I think is “fair.” I compare the time I’ve spent with our son with my husband’s. I’m impatient. I feel defeated. I could go on and on, but the list isn’t pretty.

It’s especially in these times when everything just feels hard that I need the following reminders:

1. God’s Word is necessary.

My soul needs nourishment when I’m feeling exhausted and drained. Often, I look to social media or television shows for some mindless “breaks.” But Christ alone can give me true rest. It is only in the word of God that my soul is refreshed. God promises to “give power to the faint” (Isaiah 40:29) and renew my strength (Isaiah 40:31).

I’ve found that encouraging assurances of Scripture written on index cards serve me well when I only have a few minutes. The Psalms remind me that it is always okay to bring my emotions honestly to God. And A Mother’s Heart has been a good read to give me an eternal perspective on this long journey I’ve started in raising another person.

And don’t discount the truth that comes to you in the form of friends. I need people around me to remind me what is true about God, that he is there and in control and still good, even when it feels like everything is falling apart. Often, those on the outside of my situation can see it far more clearly that I can myself when I feel like I’m in the trenches.

2. Prayer is essential.

James 1:5 tell us: “If any of you lacks wisdom you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” Lacks wisdom? That’s most certainly me. It would do me well to ask for his help constantly.

In 2 Corinthians 12:9, Paul reminds us that God tells us: “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” How I need to hear this daily! I am free to go to God in every flash of weakness, and he will help. He will readily supply the grace that I need, moment by moment, to love and serve my family well – in his power.

3. Sleep is wise.

Someone once told me that sleeping can be a spiritual discipline. Spiritual discipline or not, it is wise to give our bodies the sleep it requires. I get that this can be really, really hard when you’re a mom of little ones. But sometimes, for me, the reason that I’m not sleeping enough isn’t because my son is up all night, it’s because I’m doing things that I just think need to get done but aren’t necessary, or I’m doing things that aren’t beneficial and are a waste of time (scrolling through Instagram as I lay in bed at night… anyone?). Sometimes it’s okay to leave the house a mess, climb into bed, and get the shut eye that God designed your body to need. After all, we are creatures, not the Creator. I need fresh strength and the new mercies that will always come in the morning (Lam. 3:23), even if the dishwasher will still need to be unloaded and the sink is still piled with dishes. If I feel guilty about this, it’s usually because I’m trying to do too much, more than what God is really calling me to do.

Inevitably, my own sheer will and determination will never be enough to navigate well the challenges I face as a mom – especially when I am weary, sick, and drained by the circumstances of my day. This past weekend was proof of that once again. Motherhood is a hard job, but it is God who calls us to care for our families and it is God who will supply the strength.

*Originally posted Mar. 4, 2015

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