I've seen the discouragement in her eyes—the weariness too—at church, in my neighborhood, and even at the grocery store. I remember the days of being a young mom with kids in the house. I see the mommy-guilt in her eyes. I see the weariness. I see her struggling and questioning her purpose. How did I ever think I could do this . . . and do this well? she asks.
As a mom of 10 kids with 27 years of parenting under my belt, I like to encourage these young moms. I know how much a message of hope can change one's day. I remember the difference just a bit of encouragement made. Here are five messages to do just that:
- Mom, you matter. Out of all the people on this earth God chose you for this child. Your child will have a lot of friends, mentors, and teachers, but you are their only mom. Realize how important that makes you!
- Mom, everyone gets angry, but you can control your emotions. Moms are human. We get upset. We get overwhelmed. We feel sad and lost. It's normal. Don't feel bad if your emotions seem overwhelming. This happens to all of us. The thing that has helped me the most is to name my emotion, understand its root, and then come up with ways to control it. Things that help me are to pray, to have a minute of quiet, and to make a plan for a time when I can rest and think through my emotions. Emotions should not be ignored. Instead take them to the feet of Jesus and ask Him to help you walk through them. The encouraging thing is that ALL moms deal with these same emotions, and letting Jesus in to help you deal with them can help!
- Mom, don't try to do it alone. Every mom needs a support system—friends, parents, teachers, and mentors. I felt alone at times, and I asked God to bring me a new friend. It may stretch you to talk to another young mom at the park or at church, but remember that the other mom might feel just the same as you. Reach out because you could be her answer to prayer! If you already have great friends to turn to, make sure you do reach out and don't try to do it alone.
- Mom, don't give up on the dreams of your heart. It may seem silly to work on your art, take an online course, or sign up for a local class when you're struggling to keep up with everything, but don't give up on those dreams. When you nurture yourself—and your soul—it will help you be a better mom. Another thing to remember is that if want our kids to follow their dreams they need to see us following our dreams. It's important for our kids to do what we say . . . and do what we do!
- Mom, you can succeed. As you strive to be a good mom, dare to grow by trusting Jesus to help you. He can help you become more of the person He designed you to be. With Jesus's wisdom and guidance you can become the best version of yourself and a gift to those around you, including your child. Know that you can do this well and you can succeed!
Do you know a young mom who needs to hear these words? Take time to share these with her. As 1 Thessalonians 5:11 says, “Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.” In the process my guess is that you'll be encouraged too!