Category Archives: Mother’s Day

When I Grow Up, I Want to be a Mommy

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By Paula Bowlby, Associate Early Childhood Pastor

Woodland Hills Church

As long as I can remember, my one and only goal in life was to be a mom. I would dream about being a mom. I would play with dolls and babysit to practice for my future. Twenty-five years ago, I became a mommy for the very first time. It was a long and hard pregnancy which taught me that being a mom starts before the baby is in your arms. He was worth every second that it took to bring him into this world. So much so, I made the conscious decision to be pregnant two more times!

Recently I stumbled upon this quote- “Motherhood is a choice you make everyday, to put someone else’s happiness and well-being ahead of your own, to teach the hard lessons, to do the right thing even when you’re not sure what the right thing is…and to forgive yourself, over and over again, for doing everything wrong.”

As parents, I’m sure you can identify with the quote. All those years ago, as I was dreaming about being a mommy, I didn’t realize the responsibility it entailed. I didn’t realize that I could love someone so much that sometimes it literally hurts. The fear and the joy, the ups and the downs that all come with being a parent are things you can’t plan on.

I am thankful for my faith and that I know that I never walk this road alone. I am thankful that I have a Heavenly Father that loves me and my children more than I can ever imagine. I am thankful for the example of Jesus of how to love someone more than myself. The best part is that even when I have a hard time forgiving myself, I am forgiven. This parenting business is downright hard sometimes. Live in God’s grace for yourself and your children. Teach them that they are loved more than they can ever imagine by their Creator. Being loved and knowing that their identity is in Christ is the best gift you can give, and that gift lasts a lifetime.

Remember, you don’t want “she kept a clean house” to be what you are remembered for. Intentionally leave a legacy for your children and others. Be who God is calling you to be. Your kids will do the same.

How My Mother Taught Me to Follow Jesus

We’re delighted to bring you another post from guest blogger, Erica Morrow.  This Mother’s Day week, Erica shares with us some of the life-lessons she learned from her mother and how her mother’s example influenced her own relationship with Jesus.  Enjoy!

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By Erica Morrow, Guest Blogger

I have a mother. She taught me how to uproot flowers so they can be replanted in healthier soil. She showed me how to fold towels just so in order to line them up correctly in the linen closet. She helped me learn how to sew lines with my sewing machine, making sure the tension wasn’t too tight or too slack.

She also taught me most everything I knew about Jesus. How if he were walking with us, skipping over sidewalk cracks and anthills, he would have stopped to speak to the elderly woman passing by. He would not waste a chance to make her feel known and important.

She showed me that Jesus values the fight against injustice – that he weeps over children like those in my mother’s preschool classroom who came to school without coats in the winter, and as my mother clothed those kids out of her own resources, I learned that Jesus would have, too.

My mother showed me how much Jesus loves the little ones without a family to call their own – how he would have given the “chief seat” at our kitchen table to a little boy without a mom or dad, holiday after holiday, just as my mother did.

She steadily taught me through the times of both lean and plenty to choose joy, to look for the place in my landscape to be grateful for, to cultivate a spirit of thankfulness that does not depend on circumstance. Day in and day out, as she walked me through the successes and dismal failures that come with growing up, my mother taught me to look closely for the beautiful blessing that could be found in any moment. She worked hard to train my eyes to see such things all of my days growing under her care.

To be completely truthful, my mother has said some pretty profound things to be sure, but these things from her that I have learned and taken deep into my heart – these are the things I saw her doing and living, day after day. The steps she has taken while I have watched and listened – these are the things I have learned.

And now I am a mother, my arms sometimes full to the brim with children and responsibilities and all of the uncertainty that comes with it. And as I think about who I am to my children in this season, I remember: folded towels, lonely neighbors passing by on walks, coats for small, cold bodies, and I remember. Who I am as a fully known, fully forgiven, and unbelievably loved child of God will be what my children need to see in me. I can relax about saying all the right, important things. I don’t have to carry the guilt and pressure of wondering if my kids are in the right activities, if they are being fed exactly the right organic, free range everything all the time, if I am doing everything I can to build creative, exciting soil for them to grow in. My job, my first and at the core only job, is to sit at the feet of my Jesus, to spend time listening to his voice, learning what it is he loves, and then running with everything I have after those things. Then my children will learn what Jesus loves as they see me live, not from a to do list but from a place of deep friendship with my Father.

My encouragement to all of us who are parents is to stop worrying so much about saying the right things to our children, and instead let our hearts speak through our lives. In the same way my mother taught me how to serve and love through her actions, may our lives be the clearest reflection of the beautiful, self-sacrificing God we pray our children will come to know.

For me, that means spending time hearing from my Father, sitting close to him and growing a spirit that loves like he loves, sees like he sees, fights for what he fights for, so that my children will know the love of their God through my life. As they look back someday over their own growing up, may our children remember not our words, but our entertaining angels.

Kids Say the Darndest Things!

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Compiled by Paula Bowlby, Associate Early Childhood Pastor

Woodland Hills Church

In honor of Mother’s Day this year, we asked some kids a few questions about their moms.

When we asked what their moms do during the day, we found the kids seem to have a pretty good handle on their moms’ schedules:

  • “She works and teaches kids.”
  • “She works.”
  • “She sits and reads and goes to the YMCA and buys stuff.”
  • “She washes the dishes, feeds the cat, works on our food.”
  • “She makes sure the house is clean so that when Daddy comes home he can say, “Wow, the house looks good!”

We gave the kids the option to answer the next question in one of two ways: Describe a mom or tell me what you will do when you are a mom.

  • “I will stay home with my kids. Treat my kids awesome – I will be awesome.”
  • “I’m gonna be a babysitter. Where’s a babysitter store? I can work there and help doctors and other babysitters and customers. I want to be a helper.”
  • “Mommies are workers and they love babies”
  • “She reads stories to us and snuggles us and takes us places where we need to go and takes care of us.”

What is the best thing about your mom?

  • “She hugs me”
  • “Her snuggles in the morning”
  • “That she’s pretty and makes cheese tacos”
  • “She’s cute”
  • “I like her dresses, her pink dress, and the beautiful dresses and earrings and necklaces she bought me. I like playing doctor with her.”

The last question: What would you change about your mom?

  • “I wish she was taller.”
  • “I wish she would cook at a restaurant.”
  • “I wouldn’t change anything about her!!”
  • “I don’t want her to be different.”
  • “I wouldn’t want her to ever be sad”
  • “Her clothes… to dresses with snowflakes and stars and rainbow colors.”

I think we would all agree a few snowflakes, stars and rainbows would be awesome!

Moms, you are loved and valued. Thank you to all the moms out there for all you do!