There are so many things people don’t tell you when you are having a baby. However, it isn’t something that you can really prepare for either.
The reaction you have to your own baby crying out for you.
The beauty you see in that first smile she gives.
The responsibility of caring for this new life.
The maternal instincts that kick in to protect and cherish your baby like no one else.
The fear that runs through your mind regarding the potential threats to your baby.
Your baby looking at you as if you were the most wonderful person in the world.
Not being able to console your baby when she cries.
The drop in hormone levels after pregnancy that contributes to mood swings, anxiety, and obsessive thinking.
The list goes on and on…
Before I say anything else, I want to apologize to all of the mothers out there—especially my mother—for all of the times that I wasn’t empathetic, or didn’t value the time you spend sacrificially on your children, or didn’t respect and appreciate the amazing role that you fill as you mold the future of our world.
My worldview completely changed when I became a mom. Not my worldview with respect to the eternal security I have in believing Jesus’ promise of everlasting life, but my worldview as I see the world with a different perspective on living.
My priorities have changed, my self-centered view has shifted, and my patience has grown. This pretty much happened overnight with the birth of my baby girl.
There are various references in the Bible to motherhood and there’s one in particular that I never really understood before.
1 Timothy 2:15 (NKJV) Nevertheless she will be saved in childbearing if they continue in faith, love, and holiness, with self-control.
My daughter is only three months old now, and in that short time, I have begun to understand what Paul meant.
What this does not mean is that a woman is eternally saved through childbirth if she continues in faith, love, holiness, and self-control. On that note, a majority of the time that the Bible refers to “salvation” or “saved,” it does not mean eternally saved, but one of the exceptions where it does mean eternally saved is in Ephesians 2:8-9, but what Paul wrote about in 1 Timothy is different.
In this context, “saved” refers to becoming more sanctified—having our character refined to be more like Christ’s example—not obtaining everlasting life. Everlasting life is only through believing in Jesus Christ’s promise of eternal life. A promise that He made possible by conquering sin when He died on the cross, and by the fact that only God can offer everlasting life. Lastly, His resurrection provides us the power to live a life through His power with the help of the Holy Spirit.
So, sanctification is the process of God transforming a believer into a person who has the qualities and character of Jesus Christ. Motherhood involves so much sacrifice, patience, time, and dedication that if a mother continues to follow Jesus faithfully, that women will become more Christ-like. I am not saying that a woman who is not a mother cannot be an amazing follower of Christ, and be sanctified. God can use various avenues for our sanctification. It just so happens that motherhood can be a really great avenue for it, as well as any other challenge in this life, as long as one is faithful and desires to serve God through it.
I have also found that spiritual warfare tends to rear its ugly head when we are the most vulnerable; the kind of vulnerability that comes through many challenges in life.
Satan knows that this sanctification process has the potential to sharpen us and draw us even closer to God. Because of that potential, he will do whatever it takes to try and pull us away from God. For me, I have to continually remind myself that Satan has no authority over me as I am walking with God—and that is a solid biblical truth.
Satan will use every vulnerability from my past, thoughts of doubt, and obsessive thoughts that try to instill fear into me and seek to capitalize on my sleep-deprived and weakened state.
So if this sounds familiar and maybe something has happened, remember that you are not alone.
1 Peter 5:8-10 (NKJV) Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.
Sure there are parenting fails and major mistakes, but through it all, if a mother’s focus is on Jesus and abiding in His word, the character of that mother will blossom into a wise and powerful light to the world.
It is also extremely important for a mother to have a community of believers supporting her along the way.
This is important not only for continued growth but also to fight the spiritual battle.
I have a lot to learn, and I’m sure that I will stumble along the way, but I know that God has expanded my heart through the gift of my beautiful baby girl. He has given me more compassion for mothers throughout the world, and I am humbled to be given the title of “mother.”