All quotations taken from 2003; Waterbrook Press

Chapter 2: Beautiful By Design

God’s Word, you see, gives us the map or plan for the family so that we might better understand what he had in mind for us. Few things will last after we die, but our children and their children will live throughout eternity. What we do as mothers, therefore, has eternal significance, so it’s especially important to understand God’s original intentions in this regard. Exploring his design for families and for and for motherhood cannot only help us understand what has gone wrong, but also how, with God’s help, we can move closer to the joyful, fulfilling, and vitally important role he intended for us from the very beginning. Chp 2 page 21

Have you ever considered that children are eternal treasures and your role as a mother has an eternal significance? I am working on this post, in the late evening and as I read these words, my heart is comforted. And I hope you will be, too. The mercy of God knows no end and is new every morning. As long as there is life, there is opportunity for positive impact, change, and growth. I am so grateful for the grace of God! I am also so dependent upon Him. It is only through Him that I can walk in this vital role. Do you see your role as a mother as joyful, fulfilling, and vitally important? Perhaps you are weary. I am. Let’s take a moment and quiet heart and mind before the Lord. Let us gain vitality and strength from Him!

It is important to note at the beginning that God started families when the world was perfect and no sin had taken place- that the role of “mother” was a part of God’s core design of a perfect life. The family was to be the unit of life through which all of life was organized. Each person would come into this world through a mother and father who would work together to give the family stability and purpose. Chp 2 page 21

“the unit of life through which all of life was organized” Do you see your family and your role in such a way? The family unit provides the grid through which all of life is organized, ordered, viewed, and comprehended.

Chapter Two deeply explores issues of motherhood and today’s culture. It presents the biblical foundation for this crucial, precious role as well as honestly underscoring the confusion, ambivalence, divided loyalty, and disconnect women today feel in response to children, mothering, careers, and life itself.

If they[women] absorb the cultural message, they may avoid having children at all or radically limit the number of children in order to leave enough time and energy for their “real” work. They may come to consciously or unconsciously resent the children who keep them from being “productive.” Or, more commonly, they will exhaust themselves trying to have it all- a successful career and a vibrant home life. They try to fit too many activities into their days and end up feeling that they are not successful at anything they do.

A whole generation of children, as a result, ends up feeling rushed and pushed, with little or no sense of comfort and stability of a satisfying home life. Without a strong, supportive structure for passing down righteousness, the morals of the culture become relative to the personal fulfillment of the culture. When the biblical mission of motherhood is devalued and disappears from culture, the whole next generation suffers morally, emotionally, and spiritually.  Chapter 2 Page 34

There is a lot of food for thought, encouragement, and biblical truth laid out throughout this chapter.  Perhaps, you, like me, can and/or are feeling discouraged, weary, and hopeless. In light of this- I will end with hope.

On page 36, Sally shares scriptures and truths that express how God is the God of Redemption. Wherever you (and I) find yourself today, there is hope and a way to move forward into wholeness, purpose, and goodness. From the end of this section:

We serve a God or redemption and second chances. When we acknowledge our shortcomings and failures to him, he is faithful and just to cleanse us from all unrighteousness, We can always start off with a fresh slate with the Lord and trust him to show us how to return to his original design. He has promised to support those whose hearts are completely his (2 Chronicles 16:9).

The most important factor in being a successful mother is to turn our hearts to God, to seek his will, and to allow him to begin making sense out of the messes we’ve made of our lives. He who created motherhood is the gentle teacher whose ways and input we must seek. page 36,37

It is never too late and it always perfectly right to turn heart and mind to the Lord and seek His will and His design. The impact of such posture can hardly be expressed.

Thanks for joining me here- as I personally seek to turn and turn again… and trust God to make something beautiful from broken-ness.

-Rebecca