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Week 6 ~ Our Children {Filled up in order to be spilled out}…

Basic week 6

{Week 6} is here!  This week we’ll be talking about what the Bible says about children.  And you need to know this…

I’ve been praying for you girls tonight.  Every.single.one. of you.

In God’s divine providence, I found myself stuck on an airplane runway for two whole hours this evening, waiting for maintenance to fix a stripped screw before my flight could take off.  No kidding.  One messed up screw (and clearly, an important one – heh.).  Many seemed to be enjoying the delay as much as they could: some visiting with the neighbor beside them, while others worked on their laptops or read books.

But this one sweet momma… oh, she had my heart.

Her young infant had clearly had enough of waits and crowds and confined spaces, and this momma paced the aisle over and over, bouncing and whispering and wrestling and blushing while her baby girl screamed from the top of her lungs.

Raising children is a glorious – and hard – task, amen?! :)

So I prayed for her.  And I prayed for you.

I prayed for the momma in the early years, who longs for sleep and to wear a shirt without spit-up.

And I prayed for the one who would take a spit-up stained shirt in a heartbeat, if only God would answer her prayers.

I prayed for the momma in the hidden years; the one who keeps trudging on, faithfully packing lunches, teaching handwriting and matching socks… and doing it all with excellence, even when nobody sees.

And I prayed for the one who wishes that she could hide behind the pain and loneliness of raising a child who has more needs than she’ll ever be able to meet.

I prayed for the momma with older children who are finding their independence and way farther and farther away from her side, and for the momma who has little ones attached to her side all.day.long. (yes, even in the bathroom).

I prayed for you who are hurting over unimaginable loss, and I prayed for you, sweet momma, who just feels lost every day in this glorious, hard mothering journey.

I prayed for the mommas celebrating incredible victories, and for those mommas who are living with regret.

And yes, I prayed for those of you who are reaching out to and encouraging other mommas and their children, even though you have no children of your own.

You are welcome here, and you have my heart.

God has much to say about children in His Word.  So wherever you are in this journey, thank you for joining us this week, and for seeing God in the glorious and hard places.

God asks us to be intentional with our children.  But before we can ever pass the story of His goodness and grace on to the next generation, we need to know it full well in our own hearts.  We have to be filled up in order to be spilled out…

{If you’re unable to see this video, you can view it here.}

**Let’s talk: Which prayer do you fit in above?  How can we specifically pray for you this week?

{Week 6} Challenge:  As you “walk along the road” with your children this week (at the dinner table, driving to activities, during the bedtime routine, etc.), intentionally make a point to talk about “the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, his power, and the wonders he has done (Psalm 78).  If you don’t have children of your own, find time this week to spend time with a child in your life (nieces, nephews, neighbors, children in your church, etc.) with the same intention.

{Week 6} Reading Plan:

Week 6

{Week 6} Memory Verse:

MemoryVerse-06

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Comments

  1. I am the mamma in the early years, crying out to God to bless these years and the years to come.

    I am praying for strength and wisdom to know what He wants me to do for the children He as blessed me with.

    Peace to you.

    • Elissa,
      I am crying out to God with you! Love seeing you in the comments section, and I’m so thankful for intentional mommas like you!
      Much love,
      Whitney

    • Shannon Livingstone says:

      Today has been one of those days that I just felt like a bad mom. My kids aren’t kids anymore they are 11 and 13yrs old. They have become very independent and though I am very aware they still need me I am not as present in there lives as I should be. Let me reword that I am present but my efforts are not always what they should be. I received Jesus later in life and teaching my kids the ways of the Lord has been a challenge. But not a complete failure because they both received Jesus and were baptized this summer. Even when we think we are complete failures what God had purposed will be accomplished.

  2. I fall into the prayer of the momma who would gladly have spit up on my shirt if only the Lord would answer my prayers. It’s been 4 years since we began trying to start a family. And seeing this week’s topic I almost just stayed in bed this morning. So thank you for acknowledging us…us girls who wish we could relate to the sleepless nights and scattered toys and constant demands of our own sweet babies…if it meant we at last had our own sweet babies. Thank you for praying for us…we are praying for all the other mommas too!

    • Sweet Jessica, I just finished adding my comment below and scrolled up to read yours. I don’t know your specific story, but I shared a bit of mine below and can tell you that we were walking through our own painful journey only a few years ago. I’ve shared our story and continue to write about it, when I can, over at http://www.girlgonegod.wordpress.com. I hope you’ll read sometime and that it can possibly be an encouragement to you in the waiting. I know that it’s likely our stories look a little different, but I do understand SO well what it feels like to struggle getting out of bed in the morning, and to fight the urge to crumble and fall apart with every pregnant belly and sweet little baby I would see. Take heart and know that you are not alone! And if you ever need someone to talk to, you can always feel free to email me. :)

      Thank you for sharing where you are this morning, Jessica!

    • Hi Jessica. I am in that category too and I felt the same way this morning. We’ve been trying for 5 1/2 years. This journey is so painful but I know God is in it. He holds us through it. I know I could not do it alone.

    • Thank you, Jessica and Jenny, for not staying in bed this morning. You are loved and wanted here. Praying for God to meet you where you are right now, and to comfort you with His love, peace and hope while you wait for Him to unfold his plan for your life. Thankful for you today.
      Love,
      Whitney

  3. crystal tuttle says:

    I am already struggling with this week, as the only children I know are friends children, and I’m not necessarily comfortable talking about the Lord to them as I barely know them. I do want children eventually, so what ELSE can I do for this weeks challenge?

    • Oh Crystal,

      Thank you for being here… you are not alone! I love that you want to participate in some kind of challenge this week. Certainly, you are welcome to do whatever’s most comfortable for you… the idea is simply to put into action what we are learning from God’s Word. One idea might be to pray for your friends’ children, that they might one day come to saving faith in Jesus. I know that I am SO thankful for the powerful prayers that those in the body of Christ prayed for me as a child. What a wonderful GIFT that would be! Praying that God will meet you where you are, and bless your time in His Word this week.
      Much love,
      Whitney

  4. Thank you for such an encouraging and thought-provoking post, Whitney!

    I am also a momma in the early years, home every day with little ones at my feet and housework calling out to my busy hands. When you asked us to think about where we are with God and to consider what our focus truly is, I realized that I’ve been so busy pressuring myself to find the perfect ministry OUTSIDE my home, by which I can please God… that I have failed to recognize the perfect ministry He has given me INSIDE my home, in raising these precious little ones who will become the next generation of ambassadors for Christ. There is a season for everything, and the tedious little details that we mommas are doing in the home? God sees them, and He loves us for doing them, and even when we don’t do them that well, He STILL loves us and is pleased with us. That is such powerful truth!

    I also want to add, for anyone who might read this, that only a few years ago I was the woman whose arms ached to hold a baby of my own and struggled with knowing if motherhood was part of God’s plan for me. We endured four miscarriages in a row, all within a 9-month span of time, and it was without a doubt the hardest time in my life. So many sleepless nights I cried out to God, wondering if He heard the desires of my heart. And it’s now with joy and amazement that I can offer encouragement to other woman in the waiting, because God’s faithfulness overcame all of the heartache, sorrow and fear that I wrestled with.

    I’ve shared more of our story (and what I hope are encouraging posts) at http://www.girlgonegod.wordpress.com. Even if only one woman reads it and finds hope in the waiting, then it was worth sharing this morning. :) And talking about this now is a powerful reminder for myself of how I got to this point in my life–to the day in and day out of tedious little details involved with raising little ones–and it gives me a renewed perspective and thankfulness for the most important ministry God could have ever blessed me with… my children. :)

    Thanks again, Whitney!

    • Kim,
      You are an encouragement and blessing to the women here. Thank you for sharing your story, for reaching out in love to those who are hurting, and for offering hope in Jesus. I LOVE the insight you give on your most important ministry in this season. You are so right, and your children are blessed. Thank you, thank you, for your presence here today. <3

      With love and a grateful heart,
      Whitney

    • Kim,

      Thank you for your comment! I was at a conference for Christian mothers this weekend, and when going through pages and pages of notes, praying, and reflecting on the Lord’s voice with a friend, I realized that I, too, have been looking for my ministry outside of the home. I want my children to grow up serving, so that it hopefully becomes second nature to do for others [read: so they are not as selfish as me]. As a homeschooling mom, I have always considered my home my mission field, but I was still looking for something else. That’s not a bad thing, but I have SO much room for improvement at home! When talking with my dear friend, an illustration came to mind. As a mom of four, it seems I am always counting heads when we’re out and about, especially at the pool, when I’m hyper-vigilant. Many, many times I have lost a child… or so I think. I scan the busyness and sea of people people around me, frantically searching. Almost every single time, the “missing” child is either right next to me or right in front of me (once, she was even in my arms! My older children really thought I was nuts that day!). Anyway, it dawned on me that that’s what I’m doing when searching for my ministry “out there.” I am forgetting to look in my immediate surroundings… right here in my home. I already knew that in my head, but I was not living it out with my actions because my heart had yet to grasp it.

      It was such a lightbulb moment that I have decided to write it out. A blog post of sorts, but since I don’t blog, it’s really just an essay for my own reflection and any friends I feel led to share it with. May I quote part of your second paragraph? It puts my feelings into different words, and I’d love to reference it. I am occasionally asked to share something I’ve written on a friend’s blog as a guest post, and if that ever happened with this essay, I would only use your quote with permission.

      Anyway, please forgive the length of this comment! It was just so encouraging to see my exact feelings in someone else’s words. So thank you for sharing. God is faithful, and is going to continue to do great things!

  5. Thank you so very much for prayer. I need it so badly. I am a single mom of 2. Been divorced over 6 years now and separated over 7. My boys were 1 and 4 when my husband left. They are now 11 and 8. He moved out of state right after our divorce was final and only comes in twice a year to see his children. So basically raising my children by myself all these years has caused me to second guess every decision I make especially with boys and no male role model around for them on a daily basis. Don’t get me wrong I am thankful for my children and every day God gives me with them. I just long for a godly husband and hoping I am raising my children to serve, love and follow Jesus all the days of their life.

    • Sweet Catherine,

      My mom was a single mom for many years (to four young children), and I have so many loving memories from being raised in a home where we knew much about God’s love and care for us. There were many hard days, but I sincerely believe that God used that time in our home to draw us even closer to Him. I am praying for you today: that you will know God’s presence and peace as you depend on Him in this season, and that God will provide through his church the love and support that you need as you earnestly seek Him while you raise your boys. He is faithful, friend, and is with you every step of the way. So, so glad that you shared your heart today.
      Much love,
      Whitney

  6. I am a Mom in the hidden years. My children are 10 and 14. I thank God for the opportunity to raise them for him. Sometimes I wonder if I am giving them what they need. I look forward to this weeks study.

    • Oh Stacey,
      I think we’ve all questioned at one time or another whether we are giving our children all that they need. Thankfully, we serve a God who goes before us, equips us, and who is able to make up for what we lack. So thankful that there is grace in the journey!
      Love,
      Whitney

  7. I’m a Momma in the early years with babies all around me. I struggle with being consistent with the daily act of giving God time. It’s so hard to find time to focus on what I’m reading without little ones begging for my attention.
    Thank you for all the prayers, for all of us different kinds of Moms. It means a lot to know that we are not alone in our journey. My prayer need for today is that I’m bringing my first born to our first counseling appointment to begin to deal with some anxiety that she’s been having. We’re hopeful to get some coping techniques under our belt so that Kindergarten in the fall won’t be so scary for her. I know God is faithful to be there with us and to guide us through it all, but I also know this isn’t going to be easy.
    Thank you again!!

    • Oh girl, I’ve been there! You may not get long quiet times in during this season, but one verse revisited throughout the day, or worship music playing in the background can help to set your mind on truth as you love and serve your little ones. Give yourself grace, and know that God sees your heart for Him! <3 Just prayed for your appointment today with your sweet firstborn. May God go before you, giving you strength and peace. Thanks for your sweet comment today.
      Love,
      Whitney

  8. I am a momma in the later years with full grown children and many grandchildren that are not close by. I sometimes wish I could go back and redo those early years with the knowledge I have now, but I know that can not be and so I trust the Lord to guide and direct me in these later years to be all I can to my children and grandchildren.
    I do know that if it had not been for the advice of older women guiding me I would have failed miserably. I am so thankful for this week’s study, because I believe the Lord still has more to teach me and I can pass those things on to my children and young women growing up in the church and their futures, as well as to the new mothers that are around me.

    • Yes, Deana, may we ALL trust God to redeem our years with our children, knowing that He can accomplish incredible things by His great power and goodness. I am so blessed by your teachable spirit and for the heart you have to now influence your grandchildren. We need mentor moms like you!! Thank you for continuing to bless and serve mommas who are hungering for encouragement and wisdom. You have blessed me today!
      Love,
      Whitney

  9. How can I say this sweetly. I was occasionally frustrated as a mother. I have always tried to keep that in mind when I look at other moms when I see them in difficult situations. I have seen it in church, in restaurants, in malls, and in airports. If the situation is in order – not only do I pray, but I go to this mom and offer my services. Sometimes it helps just to get another set of hands in there to ease the burden, or change the attitude of the child or mom.

    • Oh, what a blessing, Judy! Love your heart and sensitivity that looks for needs of weary mommas around you (we all remember those days, don’t we?!). Thank you for sharing and encouraging us today!
      Love,
      Whitney

  10. I’m in the second category… Would love to live in spit up if God chooses to bless us that way. We’ve been married going on 7 years and no babies… Yet! But I believe in miracles. Thank you for your prayers.

    • Oh Joey,
      You are welcome and loved here. I just prayed that God will encourage your heart today as you allow Him to unfold His perfect plan for your life.
      Much love,
      Whitney

    • Sweet Joey,

      I just wanted to step in and encourage you today and say that my husband and I waited 7 years before we were blessed with children! :) I had one heart breaking miscarriage the year before but God finally did bless us with children. I will be praying for you today, sweet friend!

      Love,

      Angela

  11. I am a mom of teenagers looking for every opportunity to fill them up with God. I just pray that, though, I’ve waited too long to be intentional about this, that God will be strong where I’ve been weak and that He do what He does best! I’m also a step-mom to a 25 yr old man who is about to make us grandparents. Not only praying for he and his wife daily, but for our grand daughter whom I want to be able to teach about the love of Jesus early in her life.

    • Yes, Janice, that God will be strong where we have been weak!! I love your intentionality now, and as you look forward to your new role as Grandma. Blessings to your sweet family today.
      Love,
      Whitney

  12. Great post and video Whitney!!! I fall into the prayer of the Mama teaching and training. Some days it is SO hard to break up one more fight or teach/train one more way to act. I am not seeing much fruit yet and it can be discouraging. Our boys are out of the baby stage and going into the “big” boy stage. It is a relief in some ways (no night time feedings,more sleep,and gaining some independence),but it also bittersweet. :) They are gaining some individuality and a little independence. Thank you for the prayers. I know I fail so much,but one thing I am staying the course on is teaching our boys the Word of God. It’s a central talking point in our home. Honoring God with our thoughts,actions,words,and so forth is something we talk about daily. If we can just get it rooted and let God do the rest I will be more than joyous. All I want for my boys is that they seek God with their hearts,honor His Word,and be a willing vessel for Him!

    • So proud of you, Heather, for teaching God’s Word with diligence in your home. God’s Word does not return void!! Praying for God to gently water the seeds that you have planted in His time. Your boys are so blessed to have you as their momma!
      Love,
      Whitney

  13. I kind of fit into two categories. I am still waiting to see if God will bless us with a child after 7 years of marriage and officially trying for 5 1/2 of those years. We ache for children. The reason I say 2 categories is because we were foster parents before we moved to Africa. I love my kiddos and still miss them so much. We are in the process of trying to do foster care here in Africa. There are so many children that need a family and we want to give them one. The country we are in just started a foster care program. So I am anxiously awaiting a phone call to go pick up our kids. God has put us on this journey. It is excruciatingly painful but I know there is purpose and joy in it too.

    • Jenny, praying for you as you go through the process of fostering there in Africa. May God give you favor and courage and wisdom. Hugs

    • Oh Jenny,
      I hear your ache, and I am blessed by your willingness to be used by God in the foster care system. It is evident that you are trusting God in this hard journey, and I am so thankful that you are living out a powerful testimony for Him in the process. You’ve blessed me today. Praying for you as you wait.
      Much love,
      Whitney

  14. WOW! I am the one who has no children. Just today I find out that I have a sweet and dear friends who have become pregnant and sat back happy for them and yet feeling a little discouraged. See, I am still single at 33 and sometimes I lose focus on who God has made me to be and focus on who I think I should be by now. This post today help to focus back and remember all that I have forgotten the last few weeks. Thank you.

    • Sweet Danielle,
      I am SO glad you’re here. In this challenging season, I pray that God will become more real to you than ever before, and that HE will strengthen you as you wait for Him to unfold His perfect plan in your life. You are loved!
      Whitney

    • Danielle,
      Thank you for sharing and so glad this post helped you to focus back and remember all that you’ve forgotten the last few weeks. I love how God gets our attention when we need it the most. Blessings, Martha {Leadership Encourager}

  15. Oh thank you for this encouragement greatly needed….I am the mama in the early years who longs for sleep and shirts with no spit ups, also have an 8 yr old and 16 yr old. I am going through quite a few seasons, it can be challenging but nothing God can’t see me through and I wouldn’t change it. I just need pray to manage, to stay awake and be there for all girls. To be more intentional even when I feel I can’t. Thank you for this study it has encouraged me greatly.
    Blessings, Adrienne ar
    http://www.reina4jesus.blogspot.com

    • Oh Adrienne, you are in many seasons at once! Yes, God can see you through, and I love your heart to stay in the fight and be intentional in each stage. Praying for rest and strength for you today!
      Love,
      Whitney

  16. I’m a momma of kids in the late years and in the hidden years. I have one at home that is ten, then two out of the home that are ages 19 and 23. I have given these children to God, I know they are his and he has given them to me and my husband on loan for a little while. I’m asking God to help me build better relationships with all of them. I know more now with my youngest to really encourage her in the Lord and I see the fruits of that. I know my older two are in God’s hand as well and I pray that whatever my husband and I reflected that was of Christ will remain and all else will fall away. My heart now is to encourage these older ones, to pray for them and to be relatable to them and where they are at in life. I have been blessed with amazing kids, they are true gifts from God. God uses them to teach me about my relationship with him all the time. Thank you for this study and the encouragement you share with all of us each week.

    • Michelle,
      I’m a mom to a son that is grown (31) and too have given my son to God. I have struggled over time because I didn’t know God when my son was younger and didn’t teach him to build a relationship with God. Now I work diligently to share God and pray for him to seek him. Ooh how blessed your kids are to have had that when they were young. Blessings, Martha {Leadership Encourager}

      • Martha, my friend and sister! Thank you for your presence here today, and for your constant encouragement in my life and in the lives of these women. God is using your diligence now in such incredible ways. Your son no doubt sees Jesus ooze from every inch of your being, and I know your living testimony is such a light in his life. God IS redeeming those years with the bright light that you shine today. Oh, how I love you!
        Whitney

  17. I am a grandmother who has to play the role of mother to my 2 young grandchildren. They have been with me since they were 2 & 3 1/2 and they are now 5 1/2 & 7. They are wonderful children. I love them dearly. It is a lot of work to mother 2 young children when you are in your 60s but God gives me grace and strength on a daily basis. Thank you for the encouraging words and for prayer to carry on.

    • Barbara,
      You are an inspiration, and your grandchildren are so blessed to have you in their lives!! Praying for energy and strength for you today!! God is with you and for you!!
      Love,
      Whitney

    • Barbara,
      Ooh a lot of work indeed. Bless you for mothering them on a daily basis. God is so amazing for the strength and grace he gives us each day. Prayers for you and your grandchildren. Blessings, Martha {Leadership Encourager}

  18. I am a mama in the early years – a near 4yo and an 18mo, a full time job, and a husband who works 60hrs a week. My girls are my blessings and my reasons, and I struggle to give them the quality time they so need and deserve. I am selfish and want time to myself. I am selfish and want sleep. I am selfish and want the autonomy that my husband seems to have. I have a short fuse that I honestly never knew I had until I had children. I can be so ugly with my girls. It shames me to think about how I speak and act sometimes. Sure, it could be worse – I could be using fowl language, abusive hands. But still, when my face is contorted, my voice raises, and my finger wags, I am not being a good mother. I pray for the patience and strength I need to be the mama they deserve. Amen.

    • Thank you for your post. I too work full time but my childern are older and I seem to talk ugly to my family. But people outside of my home would never guess that I raise my voice like this. I will be praying for you as well as myself to speak kind words, to discipline with sternness and not fear. Yes it could be worse with language and abuse, so praise God for that, but yelling isn’t the answer. Thank you for your post that I can relate so well to.

      Praying for you,

      Kacie

    • Bless you, Jenifer, for your transparency. Oh, how parenting exposes selfishness in all of us!! Praying for you today, that you will know how much you are loved by God. He doesn’t expect perfection (thank goodness!), just a willing heart to submit to Him in our weakness. I know you have been an encouragement to others today. Thank you.
      Much love,
      Whitney

  19. I have read all of your posts and I am tearful and comforted by your responses. I am a mother of two beautiful girls, ages 10 and 8. I am also a step mother to two girls ages 23 and21. I am also a friend to women who can not\has not had children and I am reminded everyday how blessesd I am to have these gifts that God has allowed. As my days come and go I get tired and irritated with the lack of help I get from my family. So I am the unnoticed part of today’s post. I then read the posts of others that wish they could deal with these “issues” and I am humbled once again and I fall on my face before the Lord and thank him for my “irritations”. Thank you for your posts, sweet ladies, and I will be praying for you all.

    With Christ’s Love,

    Kacie

    • I love your heart, Katie, and want you to know that you are not alone. God sees and knows, and gives strength to the weary. May He bless you for your faithfulness in the journey. Your girls are blessed to have you!
      Much love,
      Whitney

  20. I am the mom in the later years. Last weekend one of my daughters got married. That was very emotional–to realize her last name no longer matched mine. My other “kids” are young adults (18, 21, 22 and 24) and are finding their way in a very difficult world. I always thought these years would be easier–my job would be done. I was so wrong. These years are much, much harder. As a mom of adults, I no longer have a say in their decisions. I can advise if they ask, but they are free to make their own choices, and watching them make bad choices hurts like no other hurt I’ve ever experienced. I assumed since my kids were all good kids, that they wouldn’t make bad choices. I was wrong on that too. Everyone makes mistakes–sometimes small and sometimes not so small. We are in the midst of a very painful trial with one of our kids right now. I can no longer ground them or revoke privileges. I can pray for them–and I realize I wish I had prayed MUCH more for them when they were younger. The years of toddlers and homeschooling I would take back in a heartbeat. As I get older, all the mistakes I made as a parent play in my mind like a movie on repeat. I wonder if my mistakes caused ____________–whatever may be happening at the time.

    • Oh Becky,
      Grace, grace God’s grace. I’m praying for God to encourage your heart today, and for Him to intervene in the trial that you are going through. I am so sorry that you are hurting, but I’m so thankful for a God who forgives and redeems and provides for us in our weakness. When we are weak, He is strong! May you feel His loving arms wrapped around you today.
      Much love,
      Whitney

  21. I am a mother of two grown children, my oldest is 31, my youngest will be 28 tomorrow. I feel that I failed them miserably as they were growing up in this area of their lives. I pray for wisdom and guidance that God will lead me in the right path so that I will not fail them again. I am so thankful to God for second chances. I praise Him and am thankful that no matter how many times I fail Him, He will never fail me.

    • Oh Trudy,
      God IS a God of second chances, and I’m so thankful that He redeems the broken places in all of our lives. You have the right perspective, and I’m so very thankful for you today!
      Much love,
      Whitney

  22. I’m the mom in the middle-to-late years with two grown children and one teenager. The grown children are leaving the nest and making their own choices, some of which their father and I do not agree with. They know how we feel yet they’re determined to live their lives as they see fit. It’s discouraging, however, we still have good relationships with both of them and I’m hopeful in God’s time that we’ll be able to positively influence them. The youngest is a teenager who is pretty easily swayed by everything around her. It’s almost a full-time job to stress what is good and right to her.

    I thought the early years were a challenge, but at the end of the day, our children believed that Mommy and Daddy knew everything and trusted in us completely. Now, we have to compete with the world’s influence every step of the way, with Satan seeking to control their hearts and minds. We have to be mindful each and every day to model and speak Christ to them. It can be exhausting and discouraging at times.

    Thank you so much for this study. I look forward to it each morning.

    • Dear Elena,
      Stopping to pray for your children now, that God will bring to their minds the truths of God’s ways that they were taught when they were younger. What a blessing that they have parents continuing to model love and truth to them through the faithfulness of your lives! You encourage me to keep loving and pursuing my children, just like Jesus has loved and pursued us. Thankful for you today!
      Love,
      Whitney

  23. I’m a mother of three grown children and grandmother to eleven. I am not really among the prayer categories that you mentioned, but still need prayer. I took this passage to heart as a young mom and tried to follow its instruction. At the time, I really believed I was doing so. As I re-read it today, I wondered if I had failed miserably. I have learned so much since then.

    These days, I have the privilege of having two grandchildren with me often, while many of the others are far away. I am trying to keep God’s Word before the two that are with me most, and to talk of the Lord often and all that He is and does. The biggest challenge of all is taking care to see that my actions and reactions line up with what I am teaching them from the Word.

    • Sweet Mrs. T,

      So thankful that even though none of us are perfect, God can use what we give Him and make something beautiful out of it! I am so blessed by your love and intentionality with your grandchildren. God is still using you to influence generations. Good stuff!!
      Love,
      Whitney

  24. I am a mom to one beautiful little girl. Even before I got pregnant with my daughter I wanted to have at least two kiddos. When I had my daughter however, things changed. My daughter was born a month early due to preeclampsia and then a week later I was hospitalized with a pulmonary embolism. This diagnosis coupled with other medical issues meant my daughter would be my only child. I love her like crazy and want to share God’s love with her. It’s been seven years and they have flown by. My daughter has behavior issues and struggles with friendships and my heart just aches for her. She tells me at least once a week how she wishes she had a brother or sister. So, I guess I’m the mom in between with a child I love more than anything who struggles to help my daughter with her behavior issues.

  25. Becca Dowling says:

    So glad to see other grandmas here and mommas of adult children. As Becky said, our job is not done. Our role has changed, and we spend much time lifting our children and grandchildren in prayer. I too have struggled with my actions and inactions in raising my daughter and step-daughter. But God has graciously forgiven me.

    I have 3 grandchildren from my oldest daughter – 10, 5 and 3mos. I have a good relationship with her, so she does come to me for advice and allows me to speak my concerns. Not so much with her husband. It is difficult to watch someone else making the same mistakes I did. Sometimes it doesn’t help that I have a background in child development and counseling. Let’s just say I’ve had to apologize for interfering. Interference is not as powerful as prayer.

    Thankfully, my walk with God has become more open and deep. I share with the little ones about God’s love and Jesus Christ. I can be more intentional with them than I was with my own children at that age. God has told me my first goal is to love those precious ones with His unconditional love.

    • Becca,
      Thank you so much for sharing – I have struggled greatly with my ‘inactions’ when raising my son. Now I pray for him and live intentionally focused in sharing God’s love and Jesus Christ with my grandchildren as often as possible. Blessings, Martha {Leadership Encourager}

  26. Kimberly Yawn says:

    I am the mom who’s baby is moving out this Friday. sigh. So many emotions. So many thoughts and prayers for him and for me…

    • Kimberly,
      Ooh I so know that feeling. My son is 31 now with children of his own. Yes ma’am so many emotions – it’s so hard to let them go the first time yet we’ve trained them to leave and spread their wings. Prayers for you and him. Blessings, Martha {Leadership Encourager}

  27. Linda Lee Hlasta says:

    I fall into the mamma in the later years. I am so blessed that all of my children continue to follow God! Two of my girls are mothers now and I pray some of these same prayers for them. Thank you for this study. I started it by chance and am so glad I did!

  28. Tricia Matthews says:

    I am very thankful for your all GMG and this study!
    I am a Mommy to two little girls (3 and 4) and this past September at full term, I gave birth to our Angel baby girl. Being a mother has been the greatest blessing of my life. Like many ladies it was always my deepest heart desire to become a mommy. Despite my sorrow, my broken heart, I must still go on and take care of our girls – as all households we are busy! Every day I am praying for God’s help in all areas as I experience sorrow and grief. I know for certain that it is only Jesus who can heal my heart and carry us through this time. And as I travel this road which I did not expect, I am sure the Lord will use me to encourage others who also have experienced this kind of loss.
    Being a Mother is truly glorious, I love this week’s focus. Thank you GMG for your ministry, I am encouraged.

  29. Whitney, what about those who are not married or have children? How can this relate to us? What about those parents who lost their children, or who are not able to have children? I think you guys should cover this too. I felt that your post was a little too beautiful, and not enough truth about the struggles of motherhood. I am not trying to be critical. What are the struggles that you go through? You have a heart of God.

    • Hi Nora,
      Thank you so much for expressing your concern today. I want you to know that you have lovingly and thoughtfully been included in the text of today’s post.

      “And I prayed for the one who would take a spit-up stained shirt in a heartbeat, if only God would answer her prayers.” This line is for those who are longing for a baby, but with empty arms are unable or are still waiting.

      “I prayed for you who are hurting over unimaginable loss…” This line is for those who are grieving the loss of a precious child.

      “And yes, I prayed for those of you who are reaching out to and encouraging other mommas and their children, even though you have no children of your own.” This line is for those who are either married or unmarried with no children.

      While we don’t always understand the paths that God has chosen for each of us this side of heaven, we trust that His plan is perfect. It was my sincere heart’s desire to include all women in today’s post, while still honoring the focus and importance that God has placed on children in the Bible.

      Please know that you are loved and welcomed here, friend. Thanks so much for commenting today.

      Much love,
      Whitney

  30. I am a mom of four whose youngest just graduated high school. I spent 20 plus years homeschooling all my children through high school. I did much of the raising of my children on my own because my husband worked out of town a lot and when he was home he didn’t relate to the kids well when they were younger (totally different story there). He now has many health problems so he does even less with them. I did all I possibly could for my kids. We were all very close especially the oldest and myself.
    The oldest then met a guy who the whole family knew of his family for many years. He never did like me. He actually came to me one day when they were dating and told me so. I never did or said anything to or about him to cause him to be the way he is. For whatever reason he and his family convinced her that my husband and I were no good. My daughter has allowed them to turn against us. They have shut me out of so many things and it has gotten to the point there is no contact at all now. I saw my first grandchild when he was 2 1/2 weeks old, only after the other grandparents left so we could visit (the live in a different state – oddly enough the other grandparents live in the same state as us). The last time I saw my grandson was when he was 8 months old. He is now 2 1/2 years old. One day my son-in-law just started yelling at me, calling me a liar, saying I didn’t love my daughter among other things. His dad even started yelling at me. I was in shock. I was holding the baby, playing with him at the time and gave him to my son. I never said or did anything to cause this. It seems to me that it was all planned. By the time my son-in-law was done I was barely able to drive home. My daughter always seemed different when he or his parents weren’t around but as they are around she is like a different person. They rarely leave her alone. She started to talk to me after her husbands rant but then he came up to us and she changed. My youngest ran to the car but sadly none of my kids, who all were there, never defended me. It hurt badly. My second oldest didn’t like him much but she has been spending time with them and now she is basically giving me the cold shoulder now. She rarely talks to me and I have only seen her once since she came back from visiting them over Christmas and she only lives about 20 minutes from me. My youngest two still live at home. They know all about the situation. I’m not sure how badly they are influenced by this all.

    My daughter did have a second baby in December. We called her to tell her congratulations and I always send Birthday and Christmas gifts but we never hear from them.
    I do believe it is spiritual warfare. It tears my heart apart to know how much my daughter seems to hate me and for her to allow this horrible influence take place.
    While I have to go through this horrible pain and suffering God has blessed me in other ways. I have worked in our church nursery for many years. I also take care of some children from our church in my home and I have come to love them like a grandma.
    I pray one day and pray it is one day soon, that my daughter (children) will realize that I have never did anything to hurt them in any way and that they are being influenced by untruths. I pray that God will reveal the truth and restore or make better our family.

  31. Oh I need The Lord to change my
    Focus . I get so trapped into focusing on my own strengths and my own works as I go through my day and I desperately want to always keep The Lord in the forfront of my mind that it’s His works and His strengths that takes my imperfections and works through them for His glory ! Thank you for ministering to my heart today :)

  32. I too was an empty arms momma, but God, through adoption has blessed us with 4 amazing children. Only one that we had from newborn- I never had a clean blouse-he definitely made up for the other 3 haha. Our oldest is 17 and seeking God’s will for her future. 2 boys in the middle- 14 and 13. And a sweet 8 year old that is everyone’s encourager and lover of life. I love motherhood, but sometimes even the best days can be a bit overwhelming as I’m encouraging our blessings in the ways of the Lord. Thankful for God’s grace that extends in my weaknesses!

  33. Thank you for your prayers! I fall into two categories (I have a son who just got married), but the most difficult one is being the mother of a special needs teenager. At times, life runs smoothly and it is almost easy to “forget” he has special needs and struggles. But when the bad days hit, my heart breaks! My heart breaks for him and the pain he is going through. I don’t feel like I can give him what he needs. I often ask God if He gave me too much. God always reminds me that He would not give me more than I can bear and I trust Him with that.

    This week came at a perfect time. We had a couple bad days last week, so I am looking forward to being refreshed and renewed through this week’s study so I can be a better mom.

  34. Christy brniak says:

    Thank you for this group! I know it wasn’t by accident that I found you!!! I will post soon!! Xoxo

  35. I have two daughters who are grown and 2 grandchildren. I was a single mom for many years and my heart goes out to all single mommas out there it is a difficult task and one done best on your knees praying. Many times you feel so alone with no one to back you up, when those times hit remember you have the ultimate co parent .. God… look up and he will give you strength . Find other Moms who can encourage you as you walk this path with God.

  36. Dear Whitney,

    Thank you so much for your super-sweet post! I fall into the last category, and sometimes the second as well. Many of my friends are married and beginning to have children of their own. It is a wonderful new stage in our friendship, for sure! So beautiful to watch them and walk with them! At the same, it leaves me hoping to someday be married with a family, and wondering if and when that will happen. Prayers for this piece of my journey…

    I do have 10 students (whom I refer to as “my kids”), and could certainly use prayers for guiding them! :) Many challenging days with these kids I care about, for sure!

  37. The momma who has little (one) attached to her side all.day.long. (yes, even in the bathroom).

    I’m a new wife and mom to 1. We are still newlyweds and I left home for the first time to be with my husband and child. I’m a stay at home mom and I really have no idea how to run a household. I’ve been learning as I go and things have gotten better and I’ve learned to multitask. I don’t even use the bathroom or shower with door closed. This works for us. My husband works full time at a job that really isn’t rewarding for him to support our family. I know I only have 1 child, but I applaud women who balance it all and have more children and demands. I use to work. I am educated. But now working outside the home moms are the ones who criticize me the most. I’m constantly being told that I’m living in a fantasy world being a SAHM and that I need to “financially” help my husband and contribute to the household and go back to work. I can put my child in daycare since I only have 1 kid. One person who I thought was my friend told me that not all moms can stay at home with their kids. Then sends me a link to a site about working from home. I didn’t know if I should be insulted or follow up on a possible job lead or a way to earn supplemental income. God’s purpose for me may be inside the home. I only want to do what is best for my family, yet I’m insecure about how others think of me. In this economy we have survived by God’s grace and provisions, but when my child is older and asks what does Mommy do for a living? What did Mommy want to be when she grew up? How do I answer her? I’m glad this week is here to encourage me that whether I work putside the home or stay at home that I’m still a good mom and I wish more Moms could get along together in our different stages.

  38. To answer the “how can you pray for me,” question … I am a mother of 3, I have been raising my 2 step-children for 10 years (they are 10 & 11) and mom is hardly involved. And in September we welcomed a 3 yr. old (he was 2 when we got him) into our home. I am not the greatest parent by any means and I struggle with trying not to repeat patterns from my childhood, mainly letting anger get the best of me. Even though there is no medical cause for it, God has not seen fit to allow me to get pregnant so that’s been a daily struggle for 4yrs. And I currently just had to take over the business I work for because they fired the guy running it so right now life is crazy and overwhelming and I really could use prayer! Thank you!!!

  39. I do need a little help, I am a mommy of 2, a 3 and 4 yr and truly would love to know if anyone has any advice on how to teach children’s about God. Where i live the resources are not good at all, i read to my children the kids bible but would love to do more. I am homeschooling this year and I would like any advice on how i can help my children learn more about God on other then just reading the kids bible. I have been teaching them who created the planet, the animals and Adam and Eve but i go blank from there, I don’t know what type of craft, art or anything to do with them to try to implement the concept of the bible and God.
    Any advice please????

    Thanks, Fam

  40. Hi Ladies, I am very encouraged by all of your honesty and openness. I am a momma of mommas. I have 8 children ranging from ages 24 to 9. I have children who have left home and children who will be home for a while! This journey has not been easy but it has been worth it. Without The Lord I would’ve given up along time ago and totally ravaged my children years ago. It’s by His strength that I conceived, carried, gave birth, raised, and sustained my sanity. Stay with God mommas and have a Godly support group and you (we) can make it. You can make it . You are making it. God loves you so much. There isn’t anything that you can’t accomplish as long as you hold onto the Lords unchanging hand. I’ve been thru the sleepless nights, 7 c-sections, breast feeding while asleep, potty training, teething,etc… I have teenagers who think they know more than I. I have adult children who wanna do things their own way even though I warn of trouble, but thru it all…the Lord has been there for and with me. My husband and I now are raising our 2 grandchildren. Ladies I’m back in the trenches with a 3 and 5 year old but God has equipped me to do what He has asked me to do! Stay encouraged and when you can’t…hold onto Jesus for dear-life. Stay Blessed:)

  41. Timpy Ellis says:

    I am a little late with my comment, this week has been very hectic (I have a little one that is sick). I fall into three of these stages. I have a 14 year old that is just getting started trying to find her own way and her own person. She is a great kid, but we all know how trying those teenage years can be. I am also mom to an very energetic 7 year old girl (my sick baby this week), who still needs me, but not as much as she used to. I am also the mom who would long for the spit-up shirts. My husband and I have been trying for 4 years for another baby. Since 2010 I have lost 3 precious little ones to miscarriage. The first at 8 weeks, the second at 5 weeks and the third at 12 weeks. My heart has just been so broken and I just do not know where to go from here. We are still trying, but considering giving up. We pray each day for God to give us wisdom to make the right decision and guidance in raising our girls for him.

  42. I’m the momma with the children who are late teens and making choices on there own…and not making godly choices! :*( It breaks my heart but I am continually praying for them. Please keep them in prayer as well. Thank you so much and God bless you!

  43. I am the one who would take a spit-up stained shirt in a heartbeat, if only God would answer her prayers. My heart broke for those ladies who have been waiting on the Lord for 4, 5, 7 years – my husband and I have only been trying a few months, but have been married and longing for children since our wedding in 2011.

    There are so many thoughts that go on in my head… if I never went on birth control to the advice of my parents and pastor, would we have children by now, or would we still be waiting? Would it have made a difference in how long we were to wait?

    Or even my deeper fear… is it sin from our past the reason we have not been blessed with children? If children are a blessing, a reward, are we not obedient enough or “good enough” to be blessed with them? Scripturally, I know that’s nonsense… but the mind plays tricks.

    The last post I wrote on my blog was about “negative results” and the waiting.

    I’m reminded of the post GMG just put up on Facebook…

    “Don’t waste the season of life you are in now because you want the next one to come.”

    “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.” ~ Ecclesiastes 3:1

    May God grant us all peace, patience, and joy that surpasses all understanding, no matter what season we’re in right now.

    • Oh Anna,
      My heart breaks for you!! You are FORGIVEN!!! Your past is wiped clean, you are made new!!! God sent Jesus to pay for our sins, He loves YOU and has your BEST interest at heart! Do not fall prey to the lies of Satan, who would have you believe that God is “punishing” you. It is a lie, and God wants to bless you with the desire’s of your heart!!!
      Live in faith, and draw near to God, sweet friend.

  44. I am the hidden years momma with a little one attached.

    Thank you so much for this study, your collective, continual faithfulness, and prayers. God IS doing miraculous things EVERYDAY! Amen.

  45. God brought me to GMG to change me from the inside-out and to draw me closer to Him. For that alone, I am so thankful! I am a mother of 5 grown children & 8 grandchildren. Like so many other moms, I too, didn’t raise by kids with the love of Jesus in our home. In 2005 I lost my middle child. He was 21 and was murdered. I mention this because that was when I fell to my knees, crying out to God for his peace & comfort, and he heard my cries!
    I make my share of mistakes and I’m always going to the cross to say I’m sorry & to receive the forgiveness Jesus sacrificed his life for.
    I’m thankful for God’s word that speaks to me everyday & guides me through each day as my kids mom & their kids grandma!
    May you all be as blessed as I am by our Heavenly Father!

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