Mother’s Role in a Family “By divine design…Mothers are primarily responsible for the nurture of their children.” (Family Proclamation, paragraph 7)
My post for Wordfull Wednesday is an old article from my other blog. Trying to keep it easy on our spring break! Originally posted on April 10, 2007.
Imagine arriving at church with your family 10 minutes early, dressed in your Easter finest, prepared to sit quietly, listen to the prelude music, and be uplifted and edified. Other families are also entering the chapel and settling themselves down to hear an inspirational message. Instead a two-year old cherub decides she wants to change seats so she can sit by mommy and proceeds to
resonate her beautiful voice whine loudly. The whining gives way to crying, even after mommy holds the little dear in her lap. No amount of threatening consoling seems to help. Mommy stands up to take the child out and the crying changes into full blown wails, “NO! NO! Don’t take me out, Mommy! DON’T! I don’t want to go out! Help!” This was our reality on Sunday. Little Cookie informed us on the way to church that she was tired and cranky. Boy was that the truth! Church hadn’t even started yet and we were out in the hallway already.
We’ve all experienced embarrassing moments when no matter what we do our children still behave contrary to what we expected. (If you haven’t experienced that, then you haven’t been around normal children). I have left carts full of groceries parked in the middle of the store as I make a hasty exit with a disruptive child, profusely apologizing to a store clerk for abandoning it. I’ve struggled with trying to teach children who learn in different ways. I’ve also anxiously worried about a child who refused to talk unless there was just family around. (In the old days it was called being shy, nowadays it’s called selective mutism. Next they’ll be calling the condition of disobedience selective hearing.) There have been good days and not-so-good days in the educating of mother. But progress has been made and for the most part it is not the child that has changed but me.
I have come to realize that each one of my children is unique: physically, socially, emotionally, and intellectually. Whoa! Did you know that? We are all different! So why was I expecting them to fill the same mold, learn the same way, be the same, when they are not? That one little discovery has made a big impact on how I treat and teach each of my children. Gathering information about the stages in a child’s development, the effects of birth order, and varying learning styles has helped also. So has a lot of prayer and patience.
Because they are different doesn’t mean they get to follow different sets of rules however. Each has to clean and do chores, but they can do it in their own way. Each has to be respectful and polite, and there are different ways to do that too. It is my job to guide them, help them, teach them.
I admit I dropped the ball on Sunday with Cookie. She told us how she was feeling and still we unfairly expected a two year old to sit still for church. There are good days and not-so-good days. Caution: education of mother still in progress!
Today, three years after this was written, it is still true. I am learning so much from my children! My love for them continues to increase as each day passes . . . as does the weight of my responsibility to be a good nurturing mother.
The responsibility mothers have today has never required more vigilance. More than at any time in the history of the world, we need mothers who know. Children are being born into a world where they “wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12).However, mothers need not fear. When mothers know who they are and who God is and have made covenants with Him, they will have great power and influence for good on their children.
Who will prepare this righteous generation of sons and daughters? Latter-day Saint women will do this—women who know and love the Lord and bear testimony of Him, women who are strong and immovable and who do not give up during difficult and discouraging times. We are led by an inspired prophet of God who has called upon the women of the Church to “stand strong and immovable for that which is correct and proper under the plan of the Lord.” He has asked us to “begin in [our] own homes” to teach children the ways of truth. Latter-day Saint women should be the very best in the world at upholding, nurturing, and protecting families. (Julie B. Beck, Mothers Who Know)
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