Motherhood Is Application

From Rachel Jankovic over at Desiring God:

If I had to pick one word to describe motherhood, I think that word would be “transforming.”

The days of a busy mother are made up of millions of transformations. Dirty children become clean, the hungry child fed, the tired child sleeping. Almost every task a mother performs in the course of a normal day could be considered a transformation. Disorder to order, dirty clothes to clean, unhappy children to peaceful, empty fridge to full. Every day we fight against disorder, filth, starvation, and lawlessness, and some days we might almost succeed. And then, while we sleep, everything unravels and we start again in the morning — transforming….

Mothering is a job that is full of difficult moments. Diapers blow out in stores when you have too much in your cart to just walk out. Sudden carsickness can leave you pulled over on the side of the road wondering just how much can be done with half a bag of wet wipes. You need to take what you believe and apply it to these difficult moments. Does the Bible teach us that God is disgusted by our frailty? That he doesn’t want to carry our burdens? That he doesn’t have the energy to deal with us? …

The gospel is not just something to talk about Sunday morning while you are in clean clothes and the kids are looking orderly. It is not limited to quiet times and reflective moods. It is something to apply while you are in a difficult position in the back of the car trying to buckle a child up who is playing the kazoo and needs their nose wiped.

God is not above these moments. He is teaching us, and leading us, and refining us, in them. He wants to see our faith in action. He wants to see us feeding our children with the grace that he has given to us.

Read the entire piece HERE.

2 thoughts on “Motherhood Is Application

  1. I need some prayer, advice, support… I have an 8 year old stepdaughter, a two and a half year old daughter, a 1 year old daughter (15 months) and I am currently 15 weeks pregnant. We only get to see our oldest every other weekend for my husbands visitations, but I stay home with our other two full time. My husband is an awesome provider. He works long, stressful 10-12 hour days to keep me at home with our kids. I am so proud of him. He has worked hard to get where he is now in his career. He is faithful and attentive to me. I am so blessed, but I have to say this pregnancy is kicking my behind. I have been sick all day from sun up to sun down since day 1. My laundry is piling up on me, dirty dishes are suddenly so hard to wash and keep up with, my two year old is fighting her sleep at night while my one year old doesn’t want to take her much needed naps anymore. When they are both finally asleep I know I should be busy busy busy, but instead I’m snoring snoring snoring trying to catch just a couple of hours of sleep. My mom is always asking me to send the two youngest home for a week or a weekend to visit and while I would LOVE to jump at the opportunity to take a breather my husband doesn’t think it’s ok. Just to be clear our girls our very comfortable with my mom and see her several times a month when she comes to visit and spoil like grandmas do. My husband and I have argued and argued over this several times. I’m in tears telling him I need a break. And when he gives in i see him looking down on me like I shouldn’t need a break. He thinks I should be able to just handle this and he has told me he thinks that. I have never felt so insufficient in my whole life. I’m amazed at women with 5 or 10 or 15 children all close together in age who do just handle it and I wonder if maybe they are just better at it then me. Have you ever just been tired and needed a break? Just to be clear I am ALL FOR motherhood. But am I the only mother out there needing a quick break?


    1. Dear Jody,

      I’ve been through “Mommy Bootcamp” and lived to tell about it, so I know the feeling. My wise mother gave me the best advice she ever could have when my first baby was born: “When he naps, you nap!” You’ve got to get in the rest in order to stay awake when they are at their most energetic, especially when you are pregnant. When your littles go down for their naps, do not try to race around and get everything done. Instead, lie down and take a nap when they do. I have ten, and I still get in a 20-minute nap each afternoon when my toddlers and baby are down for naps. (They nap longer than 20 minutes, but that time seems to be sufficient for me — take a longer one if you need it, though!).

      When the little children are back up, have them “help” you in your work. When you are in the kitchen doing dishes, hand the two-year-old a washcloth and ask her to wash the cabinet doors. The one-year-old will be happy with a bunch of plastic bowls and spoons while she sits on the floor in the same room. Or she may copy big sis! It doesn’t matter if the cabinet doors end up more wet than clean — the point is that you are including them in your work and helping them stay occupied while you work. Eventually, they will be old enough to really help with the dishes. Do the same with laundry. Even a two-year-old can match socks and fold wash clothes. You may have to re-do the socks later, but who cares? That little one is busy and happy with mom, and the chores get done.

      Having your mom come to help is part of Titus 2. The older women are to come alongside the younger women to teach them to love their children and be effective keepers at home. That’s hard to do long-distance. I recommend making a respectful appeal to your husband, sharing with him the difficulties you are experiencing with this pregnancy and letting him know that the Titus 2 help would be a huge benefit to you at this point. When he sees a happier, more rested wife who feels able to tackle more, the benefits will be obvious.

      Hang in there! This season is shorter than you think, and you will soon find that your children are giving you rest!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s