For the mom who is running on fumes

Running on fumes - TBM.jpg

I think we’d all agree that the practical responsibilities of parenting are hard work, but what I find infinitely harder than the day in and day out things that are required of me is being the kind of parent I desire to be. Having a loving, kind, patient, joyful and thankful heart in the big and small stuff — now that’s the real challenge!

Take the other day, for instance. It was a very difficult day at the end of an awful, terrible, no good, very bad week. While I was driving in the car on this particularly trying morning, an “unnamed child” was yelling at me from the back seat because his pants weren’t tight enough, his shoelaces weren’t tied correctly, his shirtsleeves were too long, and the sky was too blue.

Gripping the steering wheel tightly while using up every last ounce of self-control left in my body, I begged, “Lord, you have got to change my son’s heart!”

And in that heated moment, the very words that pierced the chaos swirling around in my head were: “Jeannie, let’s start with yours.”

These gentle words of conviction reminded me that in order to bear the fruit of God’s love, I have to be attached to the vine.

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” (John 15:5).

Jesus is showing us that apart from union with Him, our lives will not- cannot - produce the fruit of His Spirit. We must be relying on Him! We can’t, but Christ in us can!

Rather than expect us to rely on our fragile strength and depleted resources, Jesus empowers us with His Spirit to bear the fruit of His love in the work we’ve been called to do. And in this case, the work we are talking about is parenting, the hardest but most rewarding work there is.

If we want to give our children the best parts of ourselves, we must accept the Lord’s invitation to us in Matthew 11:28-30.

Jesus says, to you and to me:

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”

The rest Jesus is speaking of here isn’t simply a good long nap. Although that would be fantastic too.

Jesus invites us to bring our worn-out and depleted hearts to Him and “get away with Him”- not for a pep talk on how we can do more to be better parents- but to learn how to live lightly and freely in the power He gives to us and the fruit He produces from us.

This is not to suggest that we will not still have hard, sometimes painfully hard days, when all we want to do is run and hide where no small child can find us. Of course we will have hard days. Parenting, like life, will have its difficult days, trying weeks, and challenging seasons. But God’s Word assures us that a branch that is attached to the vine will “bear much fruit.” This means that even in the very hard days, when we know we have nothing left in us, we can rest assured that Jesus in us does.

Are you burned out? Running on fumes?  Friend, go to God. He is waiting for you! And He is faithful to His promises!

jeannie cunnion

Jeannie Cunnion is a Jesus lover and a grace clinger. She is the author of Parenting the Wholehearted Child, and her passion is encouraging moms to live in the very real freedom of God's unwavering love (a message her own heart needs to hear daily!). Jeannie has a Master’s degree in Social Work and she serves on the board of Raising Boys Ministries. She also serves as the Council Co-Chairman at Trinity Church in Greenwich, CT, where she enjoys leading parenting groups and Bible studies when she isn’t cheering on her three boys at one of their sporting events alongside her husband, Mike. Jeannie would love to connect with you on her website at

Your Prayers DO Impact Generations {And 5 Things to Pray}

Do you know that your prayers matter? Do you truly believe that the words you utter before the throne of God impact your family for generations? Mothers, we can not be silent. Here's how to begin cultivating a lifetime of prayer (and a free printable to help you!)

Do your prayers matter—not just for today or this year—but for generations? Can the prayers you pray today and the faith steps you take this week impact your descendants 100 years from now? Yes, they can!

We all want to know our prayers matter, but sometimes our greatest prayers may not be answered until our life on earth is done. In fact, you may think you're praying about one thing, but God might use those prayers greater in the lives of your descendants than your own. How do I know?

I have a few stories to share.

The first is about a woman named Corrie ten Boom. The second is my own.

Many may know Corrie's story from the book The Hiding Place. (If you haven't read The Hiding Plan, run—don't walk—to read it.) It's one of my all-time favorite books.

Corrie was a single woman living with her family in The Netherlands during World War II. When the Nazis occupied Holland Corrie and her family hid hundreds of Jewish people in their home and helped them to safety. Because of their efforts, countless lives were saved.

I'd like to think that if I was in Corrie's shoes I'd do the same. But would I? Putting oneself at risk to save others is unnatural. Corrie saved lives, but she also saw her own family lose their lives because of these actions. Corrie's father died not long after his arrest. Corrie and her sister Betsy were placed into a concentration camp where Betsy lost her life. Only Corrie was released from the concentration camp due to a clerical error.

What does Corrie's story have to do with us today? God has a plan for our families, and sometimes those plans take a generation of prayers for preparation. Here is more of the story I wrote in my book Prayers that Changed History:

Prayer came naturally to Corrie. Her parents made prayer an important part of her life. Her parents taught her to pray, and they lived an example of prayer. Corrie’s grandfather, Willem ten Boom, felt the need to pray for Jewish people after a movie worship service. The ten Boom family, along with friends and neighbors, started a weekly prayer meeting for Jewish people in 1844. Every week they specifically prayed for the peace of Jerusalem as talked about in Psalm 122:6. “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee” (KJV). These meetings took place every week for one hundred years. They stopped on February 28, 1944, when Nazi soldiers came to the house to take the family away.

I get goosebumps when I read that! God knew what the ten Boom family would face in 1944, and he started preparing them in 1844! The strength this family exhibited during a crisis in their country is a direct result from generations of prayer.

I love this story because it's reflective of my life, too. I was born to a single mom in 1971, and my mother and grandmother became Christians when I was in second grade. I didn't know my biological father until I was 28 years old, and for most of my life I believed it was only in this century my family became God-followers. I was wrong.

When talking with my biological grandfather after I met him, I discovered an amazing Christian heritage. On my paternal side my great-grandparents were missionaries and church planters, as they had been for GENERATIONS. My great-great-great-great-great grandfather FCD Wyneken was a pastor and missionary who helped found Concordia Theological Seminary. 

And according to Wikipedia, “The Wyneken family had an established Lutheran heritage long before Friedrich arrived in America. Heinrich Wyneken's father, grandfather, and one brother were pastors in Hanover. Two of Friedrich Wyneken's older brothers also became pastors. Significant numbers of more distant relatives and in-laws were also Lutheran clergy members.”

I'd like to think that somewhere in that long line of pastors and missionaries, someone was praying for future generations. I am a direct result of those prayers, as are my kids. And who knows how MY prayers will impact generations to come. 

Knowing this about the ten Boom family and my own makes me want to become more proactive about praying for my descendants. I'll never know how my prayers will impact history. Or how yours will, too.

If you're interested in praying for your descendants, here are some prayers to start:

Praying for Descendants

  1. Pray for their Salvation. (Romans 10:9-10)
  2. Pray for them to follow God's call on their lives. (Romans 11:29)
  3. Pray for them to be witnesses for Christ in all the world (Acts 1:8)
  4. Pray they will live for God and turn from the draw of this world (Romans 12:2)
  5. Pray they will be able to stand strong in their faith no matter what they face in their generation (1 Corinthians 16:13)

Print this list (click on the image below for a printable PDF) and pray these prayers often. You never know who they will impact or how!

Tricia Goyer

Tricia Goyer is a busy mom of ten, grandmother of two, and wife to John. Somewhere around the hustle and bustle of family life, she manages to find the time to write fictional tales delighting and entertaining readers and non-fiction titles offering encouragement and hope. A bestselling author, Tricia has published fifty books to date and has written more than 500 articles. She is a two-time Carol Award winner, as well as a Christy and ECPA Award Nominee. To connect with Tricia go to or

Seriously, Moms : You Need A Planning Day


You know that point where you just KNOW you are about to snap? 

Last week was our first week back homeschooling, and the week my husband was gone every night, and the week I was a tad hormonal (if you get my drift) and so on. By Wednesday, when my husband returned home (at 8:15pm), I grabbed the keys and jetted out of the house. I had no idea where I was actually going; I just knew I needed to leave!

I really hate feeling like that. I love my kids, and I am, truly, living my dream life. 

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