Our church just finished a series entitled “The Table.” In the series our pastor talked about the different types of people who should have a seat at the table in a healthy, growing church. There should be a seat for non-believers, new believers, growing disciples, and healthy leaders. All were necessary and all played a role.
As we approach Mother’s Day this coming weekend it got me thinking about all the different people who should be at a “Motherhood Table.” Who should be present in a healthy community of believers? (Sometimes God calls someone to be a mom, other times He has another plan. Regardless of if you have children or not, you are valuable and important to the table!)
Here are some of the women I think are needed at all tables.
The Seasoned Woman:
This woman has lived life. She has been through a series of mountain top experiences and deep valleys. She has learned the cruel reality of life and lives with the expectation of the eternal hope we have with God. While she grew up in a different time in the world, her wisdom and knowledge is invaluable. It should be sought after and learned from. She has also learned to look at things from a bigger and wider perspective. She has learned to not fret about everything and keep things in proper perspective. Her stability and calmness is comforting.
The Achieving Woman:
This is the woman who has hit her stride, or at least her best stride yet. Her kids are older and starting to be self-sufficient. She is starting to think about how she will spend her time when the kids are out on her own. There are moments of panic and self doubt if she is doing the parenting thing correctly, but she is quicker to remember that God’s got them and she can just follow His lead. She has begun to experience some of the joys of her hard work which motivates her to keep going when she is reminded that she still has growing to do. She has become a little more comfortable in her own skin. Her confidence and self acceptance is desired.
The Surviving Woman:
This woman is one who is finishing up college and beginning her career, or is in the throes of changing diapers and teaching a child to read. The pace is fast and the results seem unattainable. (At least if you are doing laundry or potty training.) It seems for every step forward you have a couple steps back. There is so much of life that is new and exciting but can also lead to fear and anxiety. She has goals and dreams of what life will look like in the future. At times she is tired and alone but in the end her grit and determination shine through. She is the best example of being the hands and feet of Jesus as she lives out her days and weeks.
The Exploring Woman:
This is a teen who is learning how to become a woman and hopes one day to be a mom herself. She has more questions than she has answers. It is a season of exploring and trying on things for size. Some things she ditches and others she makes as her own. She is in a season of discovering who she is and what God created her to fulfill. She gets a few bumps and bruises as she navigates the world but hopefully with each bump she learns something new. Her optimism about life is contagious and her ability to change the world is at her fingertips.
As we celebrate Mother’s Day this coming Sunday, here are our prayers over all the moms and moms to be, no matter your season of life.
Dear Seasoned Mom,
May you know and believe that your experience is valuable and needed. Even though life may seem a little different nowadays you still have a place at the table. Your life experience will show others the way. May you rest in the joys of the hard work you have poured into your children and to others. May you find healing from the sorrows that life has brought, and we pray against any seeds of bitterness, doubt and guilt that might be lingering. May you know that you still have a significant purpose if you allow God to use you in this next season of life.
Dear Achieving Mom,
May you remember the phrase “but God!” As you enter into a season of questioning. Questions like: “Did I do enough?” and “Did I do it right?” May you remember that God is still in control and He will fill in all the gaps. May you rely on Him daily and allow Holy Spirit to guide your way. May you finish this season strong and confident with God on your side.
Dear Young Mom,
This is one of the most exhausting seasons. Hang in there. Commit to 5 minutes a day to connect with the Lord. He will be your lifeline. Seek out fellowship so that you don’t feel alone. Remember every dirty diaper, meal, load of laundry is showing your child love, and it is making an eternal difference. Oh and I give you permission to have piles of laundry on the floor, toys out of the containers and boxed dinners in the oven. We have all done it, and it is okay!
Dear Exploring Woman,
The best advice I can give you is to seek the Lord with your whole heart, soul, mind and strength. Only God can reveal to you your true identity. He knows how and why He made you and He made NO mistakes. He has great plans for you and will continue to reveal that plan as you seek Him. Find your confidence and worth in what God says about you and don’t let anyone sway you differently.