“Everyone wants to have a baby, but not everyone wants to be a mom”. When I heard that statement from a young mother recently, it really struck a cord with me. I have interacted with Mothers and Fathers at baby showers when everyone is full of anticipation and excitement, only to see it slowly wane as the difficult parts of raising children come crashing into their daily existence.
The realities of sleepless nights, illness and the ongoing challenges of training children, begin to be viewed as an inconvenient interruption to the personal living preferences of the adults. The child is no longer viewed as the cute bundle of joy that once prompted silly baby talk, but rather a relentless irritant that wont go away. Exhaustion, depression, financial or health difficulties can be very real factors that contribute to the stress of raising children.
Many of us have at one time or another experienced the pains and struggles of child rearing, but what is the difference between those who experience a deep sense of joy in the role versus those who abandon or in some way abuse their role as parent?
EMBRACING THE CALL
” We are His workmanship created in Christ Jesus for good works,
which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”
Ephesians 2:10 (ESV)
Could it be that the reason that the struggle is a symptom of our own unbelief? We forget that we have been called for such a time as this. Workmanship implies that special care was given during our creation. There were special ingredients added to ensure our success before we ever begin the task. Perhaps the key difference between Joy and discontentment or bitterness in the role of parenting is who bears the weight of the call.
When trying to parent according to a personal sense of proficiency or intelligence, each of us will be found wanting.The new creation – beautiful child given to a set of parents is a supernatural being created by a Holy God. Our fleshy achievements can never prepare us for the complexities of parenting. Joy on the journey is only found in Christ. Apart from him, we can do nothing.
When you are tempted to believe that no one understands the difficulty your particular circumstance. Those moments when you wonder if the loneliness and feelings of failure will ever go away; remember, God knew about all of this beforehand. He has given you everything you need for life and Godliness. 2Peter 1:3
Enjoy the journey…