She is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future. When she speaks, her words are wise, and she gives instructions with kindness. She carefully watches everything in her household and suffers nothing from laziness. Her children stand and bless her. Her husband praises her: “There are many virtuous and capable women in the world, but you surpass them all!” Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last; but a woman who fears the Lord will be greatly praised.
Does this crush you? It sure does me if I am using it as a motto to live instead of a model to learn! I cannot measure up to this, and I cannot think of anyone who does. This passage is not meant to condemn us, though, but rather point us to our need for Jesus. Also, the last part is the concept we all need to grasp. A woman who fears The Lord will be greatly praised. Fear in this sense does not have a negative connotation, but a positive one. Do we live in reverence, of God, desiring to please Him and be obedient to His will? Do we do this to make ourselves look good, or because we understand the sacrifice Jesus endured for us, and we want to honor Him out of an understanding of the deep love He has for us? A love so sincere and pure that he died for us. If we try to be good out of our strength we will never measure up; we will be crushed by our failures.
Mom shame is one of the deadliest tools of the enemy that depletes our self-worth, peace, joy and contentment. We have all experienced it, and we have all felt the condemnation that accompanies it.
Yesterday morning was one of those less than stellar mom mornings for me. I was feeling remnants of anger and frustration from an event the night before, and the scurry of the morning had further contributed to my agitation.
In my sinfulness, at a point along our drive during morning carpool, I pounded my hand hard on the steering wheel. I spoke no words, but my action resounded loudly.
Immediately I felt shame and convicted by The Lord. I had just modeled very ungodly behavior for my children. It threatened my “good mom righteousness,” (which is sinful in itself, but that is a whole other post!) and I felt condemned.
After the kids had gotten out of the car, I pulled over and prayed a prayer of repentance and then asked Jesus to help me rest under the warm, peaceful shade of the promise given in Isaiah 30:15~ In repentance and rest is your salvation.
After getting right with The Lord, I knew I had to apologize to my children. Boy, that is a lot of fun! Humility is holy, but sometimes very hard.
I sent both kids a text that read: I modeled bad behavior for you this morning. I am sorry I let the frustration in my heart show itself in my action this morning. I have repented and asked Jesus for forgiveness. I am also asking for forgiveness from both of you. I was wrong, and that is why I need Jesus every day! Love you both, Mom.
The Lord was merciful as He showed me there is good that comes even from my goof ups if I am seeking Him. After repenting, I felt at peace. God can bring redemption to every story in our book of life. He showed me that sometimes my biggest mess ups are my best means to teach my children lessons of eternal value; such as repentance, prayer, and most importantly how much we all need a Savior!
Moms, give yourself a break. Nowhere does it say we should be perfect, just progressing. When your brokenness comes knocking, and it will, model for your children how to restore it in a way that redeems and glorifies the Lord. Sometimes it is our biggest mistakes that convey our best messages when we frame them in the context of the gospel!