For the Mom Who Feels Like a Failure Right Now …
“For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven.” Ecclesiastes 3:1 (NLT)
There have been many seasons over the past 27 years since my first child was born when I have felt like a failure as a mom.
For example, the new-mom-of-an-infant season, where I struggled to manage the exhausting grind of caring for a newborn. The season of raising three children under the age of 6 while working full time, feeling incapable of being the attentive mom I wanted to be. Years of raising middle school tweens and high school teens where emotions and drama ran high, and every decision made in their best interest turned into a battle of wills. And now the empty-nest stage, when all my babies have spread their wings as young adults, and I worry whether I did a good enough job of preparing them for the real world.
But by far the hardest season was becoming a single mom after separation and divorce. It was and still is a season consumed with daily worry over how the brokenness of our family might affect my children’s hearts as well as my own. A season of carrying the weight of trying to be Mom and Dad and feeling like a failure at both. A season of perpetually longing to ease their emotional suffering, while at times knowing my own decisions or emotions are making things worse instead of better.
Regardless of the cause for a hard season or the ages of our children, the mind of a mom is where way too many battles take place. We constantly fight the lies of the enemy telling us we aren’t good enough and never will be. We may at times even question God as to why He made us a mother to these precious children when we in no way feel worthy, qualified or capable.
I have found comfort in reading Ecclesiastes 3:1, which says, “For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven.” The rest of the verses in this well-known passage go on to say there is a time to be born and to die, plant and harvest, tear down and build up. A time for pain and healing, breaking and mending, crying and laughing. Through this passage, Solomon reminds us we will always be in ever-changing seasons, but God has arranged every single detail of our lives within each season. We can rest in the fact that He will never leave us.
Life is full of ups and downs, good times and bad, easy seasons and hard ones, but nothing is a shock to God. His plans are always perfect, including blessing us with our roles as mothers. And because of that, we can have confidence in the call to parent the children He gave us.
Don’t let feelings of inadequacy or guilt keep you from being the beautiful, wonderful, capable and fully qualified woman God designed you to be. Don’t let criticism from a spouse, the struggle of co-parenting, hard seasons of life, mistakes children may make or your own self-condemning thoughts steal the joy of being the mom your kids desperately need. Have confidence in the abilities God gave you and the calling on your life as a mom, and lean into Him on the toughest days of parenting.
If you’re struggling for any reason today and doubting your ability and value as a mom, hear this: God has faith in your ability to mother His children. Have faith in yourself.
God knew the struggles you would face and even the mistakes you would make, yet He still made you the mom of your kids.
You are the only one — the best one — for the job of raising your children.
You are the one whose unconditional love for them is powerful.
You are the one God called to guide them through every easy and difficult season of life and to simply love them with your whole heart, even on the hardest of days.
And Mama, you are enough.
Lord, help me to be the best mom I can be, no matter what my circumstances are. May I never forget to love You, myself and my children while standing in the truth that You have equipped me to be the mom I need to be — mistakes, imperfections and all. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Proverbs 31:31, “Honor her for all that her hands have done, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.” (NIV)
For more encouragement on navigating hard seasons, purchase Tracie Miles’ popular books, Living Unbroken: Reclaiming Your Life and Your Heart after Divorce, and Unsinkable Faith: God-Filled Strategies to Transform the Way You Think, Feel, and Live.
Our favorite Therapy & Theology series is back on The Proverbs 31 Ministries Podcast! Join Lysa TerKeurst, along with Proverbs 31 Ministries’ Director of Theological Research, Joel Muddamalle, and Lysa’s personal, licensed professional counselor, Jim Cress, for conversations about topics like guilt, shame, signs of emotional maturity and more. Subscribe to The Proverbs 31 Ministries Podcast today so you never miss an episode!
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
What is causing you to doubt your worth and ability as a mom today? How might remembering that God appointed you to be the mom of your kids help you know you’re equipped and capable for the job with God’s strength?
What can you do to show your children some extra love today, regardless of their age? Share your thoughts with us in the comments!
© 2021 by Tracie Miles. All rights reserved.
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