And Forgive Us Our Mom Sins . . .

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We often feel a great deal of guilt for our shortcomings as mothers, but we can ask God to forgive us our maternal sins, just as we seek forgiveness for our other shortcomings.

“And forgive us our sins.” —Luke 11:4 ESV

Just about the time the epidural wears off, the guilt kicks in. (You au natural mommas may get a pass on guilt for a few hours . . . you’ve earned it.) Sometimes we get mom guilt over silly things. I’ve had to work through patches of guilt for giving my boys too many Pop-Tarts, holding them too much, not holding them enough, and not letting them have a dog. These are minor offenses. The best recourse is to simply let the guilt go.

But there are bigger offenses I commit as a mom. Offenses so big I dare call them sins. Sometimes I lie to them. No matter how I justify it, telling them that the ice cream man only rings his bell when he is out of ice cream isn’t the truth. (But my, is it convenient!) My anger toward my children scares me (and them) at times. I grumble. I complain. According to God’s Word, all of these are sins. They separate me from my children, and ultimately, they separate me from God.

Jesus knew we would sin. When He taught us how to pray, He gave us a simple solution to soothe our guilt—ask for forgiveness.

Action Step: Write it down.

Write down a list of the sins you’ve committed as you’ve mothered. Then let it marinate. Ask God to reveal other areas of sin that you might not even be aware of. Write down what comes to mind. The goal isn’t to create a comprehensive list that outlines every sin you’ve ever committed. Likewise, the goal isn’t to confront you with your sin in a way that heaps on more guilt. The goal is to get real about the fact that we all sin, and sometimes mothering brings out a unique set of sin tendencies.

Now simply pray about that list. Ask God to forgive you of your sins. Throw the list away. It’s forgiven. Make a habit of reflecting on sin daily and asking God to forgive you often.

A Mom’s Prayer: Jesus, I am a sinner, and I can’t stop sinning. Thank You that Your grace doesn’t run out. Please forgive me for the sins I’ve committed today, and give me the wisdom to let go of expectations that cannot be met as I mother.

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