Marks of a Joyful Mother Part 1

Christian motherhood should have marks of joyfulness! It is a responsibility of the souls God has placed in your possession the pursuit to help build and nurture the hearts of babes, children, teenagers, and adult children. Each stage of childhood encapsulates a new set of needs and adjustments that we must be in tune to and minister to according to what the Lord desires.

We know it’s a tough job, because there are unknown outcomes and personalities that may not respond to the last solution we used to help them. Parenting can be a hair-pulling experience when you desire desperately to raise your children for the Lord and you cannot figure out answers and worry they will not respond correctly to each situation that comes in their lives. With all the work involved the Bible explains in Psalm 113:9 God desires that we be joyful mothers. When God blesses the womb (or arms!) of a woman, He gives her a task to take care of that child, keep her home, and be joyful!

“He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the Lord.” Psalm 113:9

Throughout my life in experiences with other mothers and being a mother for eleven years now, I came up with this list of marks of Christian motherhood. I know that I am not an angelic mother with squeaky clean goody two-shoes. I am a P-Rex (Parenting Rex) that at times follows my children barking orders, lecturing about their poor manners in the social situations of the day, and being a big party pooper. Of course a little of that comes with the territory, but my desire is that our children have those precious memories of Mama when they think of me. That their thoughts will not be “Man, Mom yelled at us a lot,” but rather, “Mama was a tough cookie but she showed us she loved us every day and it was great to be a part of our family.” I’m just going to share with you some thoughts and ideas I have gleaned about being a joyful mother.

Greeting your children in the morning. Not barking at them or correcting them first thing out of your mouth, but welcoming them and speaking kindly. (Even to those who are lazy bones and like to sleep in). Gentleness should be a part of your morning to help the spirit of your home peaceful as long as you can. Gentle joy can have an effect on the whole day!

Getting up and being ready to serve your children.  How many times do we determine the tip of a waiter on their performance in service? Would you make any extra “tip money” if your children gave you a tip for your excellent servant-spirit for them? Don’t be a doormat, but realize that you as Mama, do have responsibilities that should not all be shoved over on your children. God convicts me at times when I am asking my children to do things that I should be doing for them. They are not supposed to be my little gophers getting every little thing that I want. If we truly believe our motherhood is a ministry and a service to our children then we should be ready to serve our family as an example of Christ’s love. When we’re old will our children serve us like we served them? Joyful motherhood comes in serving our children. 

Listening with focus and attention. When you hire a babysitter you expect they would have their phone put away, not staring at a screen answering texts, watching videos, or playing games. You would expect they would have their attention on your children so that they are alert to their safety and taking care of their needs. Listen Mamas, don’t expect more out of the babysitter than you expect out of yourself in the area of giving attention to your children. They have precious things to say, things to inform you about in terms of who they are and what they are thinking of, and even prayer requests.  Do whatever is necessary to stop what you are doing and listen to them when they are interrupting you during the mundane tasks or while you scroll away. Your children cannot be enjoyed when you are distracted.

Planning ways to spark their interest and keep your heart strings connected. Whatever family rut you are in, get out of it and find some fun things to do. Peruse Pinterest, check out the local deals for cheap activities, or invest some time buying new grocery items and make a new recipe. You can delve into their desires and interests if they are properly managed and learn about the things they are talking to you about. If it requires you do some research or introducing them to a person who knows more on their interest do it! Your hobbies, home business, and ministry should not get all of your creativity! Joy comes when we are able to connect with our children in enjoyable activities.

Celebrating and acknowledging little achievements of progress. In child training it can be easy to focus on the negatives, trying to train them to get them to do things “right” and correcting our children endlessly. The old saying goes, “If Mama ain’t happy then ain’t nobody happy…” but we can tweak it a little, “If Mama ain’t thankful, then ain’t nobody happy.” Take time to learn to train yourself to praise and acknowledge that you are seeing improvement in their struggles and personal goals. You don’t have to go overboard with prizes or rewards; to give a special hug or compliment alone can encourage them. A word of thanks can go a long way! For those of you with older children who “expect” them to get everything right because they already know what to do and how to do it, give them a pat on the back for all those jobs completed. Encouraging our children should bring joy to our hearts. 

We have such an impact on our family, let’s be plugged in to our actions and rely upon God’s guidance to help us continue to have those heart-to-heart joyful connections with our children. There are more suggestions on how to be a joyful mother in Part 2 of this article, be sure to look for it here on the blog very soon!

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I’ve Got it Better Than the Angels!

I imagine all of the angels waiting on the edge of their seats with nervous anticipation waiting for the moment. The moment they had all been waiting for! They held their breath for the final portion of God’s plan that would seal the Genesis promise: (Genesis 3:15) that man’s seed would bruise Satan’s head. His death on the cross bearing upon it the sins of the entire world had been a heartbreaking event.
 
Then, in the flash of an instant Jesus Christ’s dead body wrapped in grave-clothes inhaled a Breath of Life in its nostrils. Christ proceeded to rise from the grave-clothes, sitting up and folding the napkin that covered His face neatly placing it next to His side. Then, He came forth knocking the soldiers down as He emerged from the tomb’s entrance with the strength of His power. The climax of the entire hope and remedy for sin was all hinging on that one specific moment.
 
I believe the angels gasped then hooped and hollered. When one sinner accepts Christ as Saviour heaven erupts into rejoicing (Luke 15:10). What would the rejoicing have been like on that day!? The resurrection of the Son of God arising sealed the victory over death, sin, and the grave! It opened up the possibility for all men who believed to be saved from eternal death, to have eternal life.
 
The Bible says that the angels look down in wonder and amazement, learning (I Peter 1:12b) as they cannot fully understand a man’s life. The entire experience of life and freedom to choose Christ is foreign to their knowledge. They were able to witness the entire experience LIVE!
 
While it would have been such a miracle to see the crucifixion and the resurrection from the viewpoint of an angel, I am so glad I accepted Christ when I was 4 years old.
I have been able to witness God’s transforming power in my life. The angels watched, but I get to experience this relationship with God. I love Him so much for loving me enough to send His Son. Nothing will ever compare to that!

25 Mother-Son Church Activity Ideas for Mother’s Day

Mother-Daughter activities abound around Mother’s Day and most churches host fun activities for women to be able to spend time with their daughters or focus on being a “daughter of the King.” Have you ever considered changing up the normal routine of events and focusing on those Mamas with sons in the family? I know this post is a little early to help you with some planning ahead if you’re interested in changing up your Mother’s Day event this year or making plans ahead for the following year.

This can be a lot of fun! Don’t discriminate between ages, let older men bring their older mothers if they want to and let mothers bring their younger sons too. If you allow the older men to come with Mama then it will show the younger men to show honor and respect to their mothers for their whole life. It will also give you a source of help for cooking during the cook-out and men who can do the devotion or be the drivers for the day-trip excursions.

1. Son-Hosted Grill Out/BBQ – Have the sons grill up meat for the mothers and have a picnic on the church grounds. Moms bring sides!

2. Mama-Son Baking Championship – Do a bake-off between families, having the mothers and sons cook up a baked dish and compete with each other. Add a twist by giving them a theme to base their baked goods from. P.S. If you’ve ever watched the hit show “Kid’s Baking Championship” on The Food Network then you will learn there are great boy chefs!

3. Lego Build Banquet – Boys love Legos, so why not have a Lego-themed event!? All you need are tables, legos, and decorations. Let the boys build to their heart’s content. Devotional Idea: “Lego and Let God,” talking about how mothers raise their sons for the Lord and then let go and allow God to take over their life. Or perhaps a devotion about building your life upon God’s foundations.

4. Raising Knights Night – Using a medieval theme you can teach Christian boys how to treat a lady by allowing them to be a valiant knight for their mother.  Devotion Idea: Gentlemanly etiquette and Biblical advice on raising a knight.

5. Be Mom’s Super Hero Banquet – The idea is like that from above, concentrating the focus on teaching boys how to be a hero for women, especially defending and respecting their mothers. The super-hero theme is not complete without thinking of Christ’s love and tenderness toward Mary, His mother. Use primary colors for decorations, wear capes, and have fun with it!

6. Mother-Son Bowl-A-Thon – Gather up all the gals and guys and rent a few lanes at the bowling alley and just get out and enjoy those stinky bowling shoes and a striking afternoon game together.

7. Mother-Son Hike/ Nature Walk – Organize an outdoor hike and walk for either a day trip or a nearby adventure locally. Plan a picnic and have them enjoy God’s creation together!

8. High Tea with Son and Me – Have a dainty tea set up for mothers and sons to enjoy little sandwiches, punch/tea, and little desserts. This seems a little too close to what is normally done for mother-daughter events but this could be an exercise on teaching a young man to treat his mother to a fine date and wear his Sunday best and enjoy each other’s company. This is great training for men to learn the value of dating their future wives.

9. Sports Event Spectacular – Plan moms and sons to attend a sporting event together with the other mothers and sons in your church. I know some of you gals dig sports, so this would be the occasion for mothers to “take him out to the ballgame!”

10. Board Game Bonanza – Have an afternoon of fun with snacks and games enjoying mother-son bonding time playing board games with other mom-son competitors.

11. Birdhouse Build Day – Create a time of building (what boys like) a birdhouse together and then decorating/painting it together (what moms like). Devotional ideas: Putting together a life for God, Preparing your heart for God to live in (like you prepare a birdhouse for a bird’s family).

12. Dessert Potluck – Need an idea in a hurry? Just invite mothers and sons to bring desserts and enjoy a dessert potluck in the church fellowship hall together on a Saturday afternoon. Devotion Idea: Be Sweet to Mama – Be Sweet to Son (Use examples from God the Son).

13. Mama/Son Picture Booth – Okay, so this would be something you can incorporate to any of the events! You could also find a background and a photographer, and perhaps a few props for a fun activity to do on Mother’s Day Sunday itself for all children and their mothers. Set it up in the foyer or another easy spot to get access to and you can give them a great memory to cherish for years to come.

14. Coffee and Cookies Campout – Mix a camping theme with yummy coffee and cookies and you’ll have a great mother-son connection. Imagine tents and fake campfires in your fellowship hall and cowboy coffee (or real!!)made on electric burners surrounded with plates of cookies made by Mom. OR break out the patio fire pits and use them outside in someone’s backyard instead! Devotion Idea: How Parenting is Like Camping – Crazy things happen on camp-outs just like in parenting but when it’s over you cherish the adventures!

15. Talent Show/Hobby Highlight Night – Showcase the talents of your mothers and sons by allowing them to have a time to share their God-given abilities for the church or for the other mothers and sons. Ensure the content is appropriate by having a sign-up sheet with what each family will be performing for each other. Mother-Son ideas could be: duets, instrumentals, comedy/skits, scripture recitation, etc.

16. BYOB – Bring Your Own Breakfast – Meet at a park for an early morning picnic and have each mother-son duo bring their own breakfast to eat. Devotion idea: “Joy Comes in the Morning” Highlight the godly benefits of being a joyful mother and a godly son.

17. Chef Cooking Demonstration – Hire a local chef to come in and do a cooking demonstration for mothers and sons. This could also be hosted by another cook (perhaps a gifted person in your church) that is great at teaching their skills. Have them create a meal that could be served to the group and easily duplicated at home. Encourage them to foster a love for family by learning to serve each other with these newly acquired skills. (Add this to the Mother-Son Baking Championship and you’ll have a pretty cool event.)

18. The Amazing Race Adventure – Create your own local scavenger hunt placing other mothers and sons on teams working together to carry out tasks and find clues that will lead them to a common place to enjoy time together.

19. Go-Kart Championship – Enjoy an afternoon at a local Go-Kart track. Rent a place for the afternoon and enjoy mom-son competition and speed!

20. Mother-Son Pottery Painting – Pottery painting is not just for girls! Creative boys would like to make something they can take home or maybe even a gift for Mama. Check out your local pottery painting place and see if you can rent a room for an afternoon.

21. Theme-Park Trip – Do you have a theme park within a day’s travel? Gather a mother-son group and set out for roller coasters and rides for a fun day trip.

22. Ice Cream Social – Ice Cream + Moms & Sons = Special Memories. Provide the ice cream and have the ladies bring the toppings. An exciting edition to this would be to create a “Giant Banana Split” like you can find here. Devotion Idea: God sprinkles blessings on us just like we’ve sprinkled toppings on our ice cream. Even though we can have cold times (like ice cream) God can make them sweet.

23. Glow Game Night – This can be a fun night activity done indoors at church or outdoors. Include black lights, glow in the dark paint, and more! Create fun games using glow sticks where mothers and sons can compete to win prizes together.

24. Card Game Carnival – Set up a variety of card games at different tables. Rotate the groups through the tables to be able to play a variety of card games together. Or drop the card games and just have a carnival with carnival games!

25. Mother-Son Lock-In – Gather the boys together with Mamas and enjoy fun at an all-nighter! Moms and sons can enjoy doing all types of activities (incorporate a conglomeration of the things listed here for a night of fun!). Choose a theme to go along with the lock-in and you’ll be able to focus on decorations, food ideas, and the devotions. Have a son bring the devotion to the group at some point in the evening. Don’t think mothers will attend all night? Then end at midnight.

Thank you so much for coming by and taking a look at these ideas. If you ever use one and do your own Mother-Son event please take some photos and send them to me in an e-mail! I’d love to see your creativity.