The Responsibilities of Motherhood
by Angela Wisdom
The book, Woman, Her Blessings and Responsibilities, written by Irene S. Foy says, "Motherhood provides woman's great and incomparable work" -- It is the most rewarding work she can do." This is true. But, the feminists seek to diminish woman's role. They, and the world, try to tell woman that she finds fulfillment in a job or career. But will she find her fulfillment in these areas? What does God say?
I read an encouraging news article recently on Breitbart news source. An organization called HOMEMAKERS FOR AMERICA celebrated a national and international movement that began May 2017. This organization is pro-God, pro-family and pro-freedom. Listen to what they have to say about the home:
"Feminism has had its effects on the home. Last year the United Nations Council on the Status of Women, the big push by feminists from Europe, Canada, and the United States was to declare motherhood a "burden" defining it as "unpaid work" that needs to be recognized, reduced, and redistributed."
The article went on to say:
"We are at a critical time in our culture," Fletcher said, "Our children are under constant assault -- from gender confusion to global warming guilt." . . . . "All these things are pushed on our kids by radical feminists and their cohorts." Fletcher said. "From school shootings to transgender bathrooms, feminists are on the wrong side of every issue when it comes to protecting our children and maintaining a free society." Fletcher said, "Despite what feminists would have us believe, what mothers want most isn't the right to kill their own offspring, but the opportunity to be with them." "Now more than ever we need the influence of good women in America -- for our children's sake and the future of our nation." Fletcher said.
Fletcher said that while the left and feminists are promoting daycare and government schools, mothers hold the key to creating a healthy and prosperous society. "What children need more than anything isn't the best tax-payer funded daycare, it's the love of their mother," Fletcher said. "Strong family connections create more stable, well-rounded kids who become good husbands, fathers, wives, and mothers and contributing participants in building stronger communities."
I say "Amen" to what Ms. Fletcher says. Woman finds fulfillment, not in a secular job, but in her role of being a wife and mother. The world is learning this, but all we have to do, to know that this is so, is read God's word. The feminist movement has deceived woman into thinking they can never find fulfillment unless they develop a career. Christian women are to find fulfillment in the things God has said will fulfill us. We must get back to doing things God's way! GOD MADE US! Do we trust Him to know what is best for us? If we want to find fulfillment in a career, we are looking in the wrong place!
Mothers cannot and should not sacrifice the welfare of their children on the altar of pursuing a career or any other self-interest. The Bible's description of a godly woman shows a mother devoted to her children, not a woman who views children as getting in the way of her having a career, reaching fulfillment, or having fun.
God's word does not teach the modern egalitarian (having equal rights) home with a 50/50 percent share in decision making. The home does not function as God intended when role reversals occur either. Occasionally a woman might have to take the temporary role of provider because of her husband's injury, illness or loss of job, but to take the role on permanently is full of danger to God-given roles. She might have the permanent role because of her husband's death, or sickness or because she is single. But, these are exceptions to the rule, and have their own unavoidable problems to contend with.
So what does God's word teach regarding motherhood and its role in the family??
During the period of the captivity, Ezekiel told Jerusalem that this proverb could be used against them because of their sins: Ezekiel 16:44 Behold, every one that useth proverbs shall use this proverb against thee, saying, As is the mother, so is her daughter.
We still use this proverb today -- "like mother, like daughter", "like father, like son". God expects us to train our children. We have to train them in the right way, because like Ezekiel said, our children will become like us. When a teacher, any teacher, sets an example, the student exceeds what the teacher has taught.
The perfect teacher, Jesus, set before His disciples an example to follow in His steps: 1 Peter 2:21 For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:". We are to follow in Christ's example by using what He has taught us in His word. This is HOW we "follow His steps".
Parents hold the most intimate teaching role given in life. The role of nurturing and chastening our children in the admonition of the Lord. Paul told the Ephesians: Ephesians 6:4 (KJV) And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. In a study of the Divided Kingdom we learn over and over that the kings walked many times in the ways of their fathers (Example: I Kings 15:26). Why should we think that our children are any different than the children were in that day? If we walk in sin, so will our children.
To be the kind of mother that God wants us to be, our lives are to be ones of self-sacrifice. When we bring a child, a living soul, into the world, this is not the time to be thinking about what I want to do, and how I can be fulfilled in a physical way. It is time to think of the child (or children) and what they need! Your needs now are put on the back-burner, so to speak. This is not what the world tells us. The world tells us, "You can have it all! You can be a great mother and have a great career! You can do what fulfills you!"
What does God say? Let's look to God's word for guidance. Is God's word the "blueprint" of our role as mother?
Before Samson was born, his father asked the angel of the Lord what to do: Judges 13:8 Then Manoah intreated the LORD, and said, O my Lord, let the man of God which thou didst send come again unto us, and teach us what we shall do unto the child that shall be born. We need to ask God the same question: "What shall we do unto the child that shall be born?"
As we look to the ways to raise our children, what better example can we have than that of our Lord? Our Lord came to this earth, not to be served, but to serve as a servant: Philippians 2:5-9 5 " Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: 6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: 7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: 8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. 9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:"
As we become the mothers God wants us to be, we are to keep in mind that our role as a mother, and as a Christian is to be one of service to others if we are to emulate our Lord. It is not a role to promote ourselves, or to put ourselves on a pedestal. When we have the attitude that our lives are one of service, and we become more and more like our Lord, then we'll be less concerned with "ME" and more concerned with "OTHERS" -- especially our husbands, and our children and their welfare. The submissive role of woman that God gave her is uniquely suited to that of being a mother. DO WE TRUST GOD TO LEAD US IN THIS ROLE? What are our priorities?
The world tells us: "You can have it all! You can be a great mother AND have a great career AND focus on YOU, YOU, YOU!" But is this what Jesus tells us to do? Jeremiah 10:23 tells us, " O LORD, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps." WE'RE TO LISTEN TO GOD!
When we are Christian women, our focus is not on to be on ME but on OTHERS! Look back at Philippians 2:5 "LET THIS MIND BE IN YOU, WHICH WAS ALSO IN CHRIST JESUS". What mind?? That of being a servant in obedience to God!
Our service as mothers begins before our children are even born. Let us look at Hannah's attitude before she had her child: 1 Samuel 1:11 11 And she vowed a vow, and said, O LORD of hosts, if thou wilt indeed look on the affliction of thine handmaid, and remember me, and not forget thine handmaid, but wilt give unto thine handmaid a man child, then I will give him unto the LORD all the days of his life, and there shall no razor come upon his head.
First of all she prayed about it. She made a promise to God that if she had a child she would give him to the Lord. We don't give our children into service at the temple as Hannah did, but when we have our children we are to keep in mind that we are to prepare them for service to God, just as Hannah was prepared to do. We are to keep in mind that the child we bring into the world has a soul -- a soul that will live on in heaven, or suffer in hell for eternity. This thought should sober us and make us realize our great responsibility before God in training that little soul for God. Where they will spend eternity is to a large part dependant on what we teach and how we train them.
How do we train our children? Well, it takes prayer, study, time, and a lot of effort. First of all, we must know God's word to impart it to our children. 2 Tim. 2:15 tells us to study to show our selves approved unto God. There is no easy way to get around this. Study takes time and effort.
Let your children see you study. I learned this the hard way. When my daughter was very young, it was easier to study my Bible when she went to bed. But one day we were talking about the Bible and she said to me, "Mama, you don't study your Bible." That really bothered me, and made me realize that our children have to see us study.
Let your children see you take care of yourself spiritually. Paul told the Corinthians in 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 19 " What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? 20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's."
If you want to train your children as you should, first you will take care of yourself and remember that Paul said, "your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost", and that "ye are bought with a price". This should be before our minds every day, and it should help us when we are tempted to do things that are not approved of by God. It should be in our thoughts when we dress in the morning -- what is our manner of dress? Our children see this. It should be in our thoughts when we watch anything on TV or the internet? Our children see this. It should be in our thoughts when we are tempted to put anything before God. Our children see this. It should be in our thoughts when we have opportunities to serve or teach others. Our children see this. Children that see their mother putting the Lord first in every aspect of her life will try to emulate her. Children are great mimics. Whatever they see you do, they will try to do. If you are living and conducting yourself as God wants, they will try to also. By the same token, if you are not the kind of mother God wants you to be, your children see this! And, they will emulate you!
How do we talk to our children? Colossians 4:6 Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man. Do we talk before our children as we should? What kind of things do we talk about before them? Do we tell them about God and His mighty works? Do we tell them about God's people? Do we tell them about heaven? Children listen -- some more than others. Whatever things they see you talk about, they will also. Whatever way we talk to our children they will imitate when talking to others.
Our children are to respect what we say. The scripture tells us about children who do not respect their parents: Proverbs 15:20 A wise son maketh a glad father: but a foolish man despiseth his mother. Proverbs 17:25 A foolish son is a grief to his father, and bitterness to her that bare him. Proverbs 10:1 A wise son maketh a glad father: but a foolish son is the heaviness of his mother.
Don't allow your children to be disrespectful to you. When we allow disrespect out of our children, that will carry over to other people, and even to disrespect of God. Our children learn how to obey God and respect God by learning to respect us as parents. If we allow disrespect out of them, not only will it be "bitterness" to us, as the proverbs says, but it will cause them to lose their souls in a devil's hell.
We live in a world of parents who don't realize they are the parents, and they let their children rule the roost. If one's children will not listen to their parents, then they have not been taught properly to respect them. Our children have to be taught to respect us and others in order for them to respect God. They have to be taught to respect us in order for them to respect the laws of our land.
We need to teach them to respect the "hoary" (or gray) head of our elders. God expects respect for the elderly and those who are older out of the young. Leviticus 19:32 (KJV) 32 Thou shalt rise up before the hoary head, and honour the face of the old man, and fear thy God: I am the LORD. I have seen so many children of recent years that don't respect older people, and will not rise to help them, or even speak to them. Teach your children to respect the hoary head.
We need to have wisdom, and use words of wisdom in talking to our children. Where do we get that wisdom? First, we need to ask God for it: James 1:4-7 4 But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. 5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. 6 But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. 7 For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord.
Second, realize that our wisdom comes from God, not from man: Proverbs 3:5-6 5 "Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. 6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." Our wisdom should come from God, and we know what He wants by studying His word.
We should discipline our children. This one is hard for many parents. Proverbs 29:15 The rod and reproof give wisdom: but a child left to himself bringeth his mother to shame. Notice this last phrase -- "a child left to himself". Too many children in today's society have been left to themselves. Children need guidance on a continual basis. One cannot do this from a cell phone a babysitter, or from a distance, and a babysitter instills her values in the child, not the parent's! Discipline is to be a constant, and is to be consistent. When our children are not disciplined they will bring shame and sorrow to us as Proverbs 29:15 said. Protect your children!! Too many children are left to themselves to get into trouble on the internet, exposure to bad friends, drugs, alcohol, sex and pornography. Guide and discipline your children! They need you when they are small, but in a different way, perhaps they need you more as they approach and enter the teenage years.
Don't WE need discipline or chastening from God? Hebrews 12:5-8 5 "And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: 6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. 7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? 8 But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons." These verses tell us that the Lord chastens those He loves. When He does this, it makes us a more righteous people. Verse 11 of this same chapter says: Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby. When things happen in our lives to teach us lessons and chasten us, we don't enjoy it, do we? But to be the kind of people we need to be, we need those lessons that chasten us.
Children are the same say. If we do not discipline our children we don't love our children as we should. When you discipline, make sure you and your husband are on the same page. A divided house will result in children that don't respect you or God.
Spanking is involved in discipline. Proverbs 13:24 He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes. This is not abuse, but a spanking on the bottom that will get their attention. Try not to do it when you are angry, and let them know you love them after you spank.
Teach your children to respect God's ways. We do this by teaching God's word. When Moses addressed the children of Israel in Deuteronomy, he told them how to teach their children. Deuteronomy 6:5-9 5 And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. 6 And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: 7 And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. 8 And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. 9 And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.
First of all the word was to be in their hearts. Then they were to teach them when they were sitting, when they were walking, when they were lying down, when they were raised up. They were to be as signs on their hands and frontlets between their eyes. The word was to be written in their homes and on their gates. Do you get the message? God's word was to SATURATE their lives and be taught at EVERY opportunity! We need to do the same.
We teach our children to respect God's ways by teaching them to pray. We teach our children to respect God's ways by teaching them to worship. Children don't automatically know how to do this -- they have to be taught. When we are worshiping God, teach your children that this is not the time to get your attention and disturb the attention of people around you. Usually there is a break between class time and worship in most congregations, which is the time to get drinks and bathroom breaks. Unless a child is having a bladder problem or sick, little ones can learn to sit through a whole worship service. Think! Can they sit through a whole movie at home without moving? If they can, they can sit through a worship service. Children get bored and going out of the worship service can be a novelty. Teach them that worship is IMPORTANT!! Teach them it is important to God. If they see that worship is important to you, it will become important to them.
Teach your children to work.
Paul told the Thessalonians: 2 Thessalonians 3:10 For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat. I have known so many mothers in recent years that have not taught their children this valuable lesson. The workplace is full of young people who don't know this lesson. Young children can be taught to pick up their toys. As they get older they can help with real housework, such as dusting, vacuuming, taking out garbage, and washing the dishes. Will your children like it? Most will not. But it is your duty as a parent to teach them these lessons. Do they see you work? Do they see you keep house? Is it a lot of trouble to teach children these tasks? Yes! You may be tempted to do it yourself because of the time and effort involved in teaching them, but they have to be taught.
There are so many responsibilities, and we have touched on only a few. I hope you see that if a mother fulfills her responsibility in all these regards, she will not have time to be focused on self-fulfillment. Her fulfillment will come from doing God's law, and teaching her children God's law. The time to focus on self-fulfillment and what self wants is not the attitude God requires. We're to have the attitude that God told Israel of old to have: Deuteronomy 10:12 " And now, Israel, what doth the LORD thy God require of thee, but to fear the LORD thy God, to walk in all his ways, and to love him, and to serve the LORD thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul, ". The Lord only lends your children to you for a short while. Redeem the time, for it is fleeting. As Ezekiel said in Ezek. 16:44 "As is the mother, so is her daughter." What kind of daughters and sons will we have? Will they be like us?? We'll give an answer to God if we have not done our job. If we are to have more "Timothys" such as Lois and Eunice had in 2 Tim. 1:5, and see the church prosper, we must instill faith in our children. Committed mothers are needed by the Lord for this job!
I leave you with the words of Proverbs 14:1. "The wise woman builds her house, But the foolish tears it down with her hands." (NASB). Are we building up our house, or tearing it down?
Quotations from "8 Million Mothers from 150 Countries Sign Declaration: 'The Era of Radical Feminism is over', Breitbart News; www.breitbart.com, by Penny Starr, 2 Mar 2018