When our children make mistakes, we encourage them to learn from those mistakes, don’t we?
When their limited abilities disappoint them, we encourage them to try again, to try another way, or to wait patiently for a time when they are stronger. We look for opportunities to engrave the phrase, “You can learn from that!” in their hearts and minds. We see childhood as a beautiful journey of development, an educational wonderland in which everything – from success to failure – is an opportunity to reflect and grow.
And yet, we don’t always apply the same mentality to motherhood. But we should, shouldn’t we?
What if we chose to see ourselves as women who are ever growing in our abilities to mother?
What if we simply learned from our mistakes instead of beating ourselves up?
What if we tried again, tried another way, or waited patiently until a time when we were stronger?
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we considered motherhood to be a beautiful journey of development, an educational wonderland in which everything – from success to failure – is an opportunity to reflect and grow?
Let’s hide this in our hearts and let it encourage us from day to day:
Motherhood is a woman’s continual growth in relationship and skill, it is not an impossible standard of perfection reserved for an elite few.
When you suffer from pangs of mommy-guilt, let it be a signal for you to think better about motherhood. Guilt may threaten to shut you down, but don’t let it. Instead, bravely consider if the guilt is legitimate: is there some way you could grow, change, or learn? Consider if the guilt is misplaced: is there some way you could surrender, let go, or rest in God’s sovereignty and goodness?
When we feel like we’ve failed our children (oh, I know this feeling well), the best thing we can say is, “I can learn from that”. God’s grace extends to us, as mothers, especially in our weakness and limitation. This humble habit of receiving grace and growing in it will be a beacon of light for our children, far outshining our mistakes.
Failure is never the end of the story… even for mothers. One hundred failures today are one hundred stepping stones to a stronger tomorrow.
(Remember what the Apostle Paul learned in his weakness? He wrote that God taught him, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:9)