Over at the blog Sister, Daughter, Mother, Wife, mother of four Alison Andreasen writes about a pressure common to mothers: The feeling that if you don’t do everything for your family with your own two hands, you are a failure. Here’s Alison:
What was my ideal, you ask? It was that mom should do all the things a mom does, including cooking, cleaning, caring for the children’s physical, emotional and spiritual needs, homeschooling, and more. Not a bad ideal, you might say. But after a while, this ideal became too heavy a burden for me to bear…
…what I thought was a faithful determination to serve my family was actually an arrogant belief that unless I was the one who did everything, God–the creator of the universe–couldn’t accomplish His work. On top of that, I was already living in direct and serious sin, for I was finding my comfort in being a ‘good’ Christian wife and mother instead of resting in Christ.
…By God’s grace, my sin was brought to light, and I live free from the fear and the bondage of my former ways. I am free to rest and trust Christ to work for the good of those I care about. They need to be cared for, but no one says that I have to be the source of EVERYTHING they need. God has placed others in my midst to help me in my daily tasks. I am weak. He, however, is strong to save. To Him be the glory forever and ever. Amen.
We moms (and dads) often feel a tremendous pressure to attempt to essentially save our children through our works, whether that is in nutrition, health, play experiences, friendships, education, or anything else. But Christ frees us from that spiritual slavery. He redeems us from our inevitable failures as parents. The Holy Spirit is ultimately the one in charge of shepherding our children through life into eternity. He is not only the author and finisher of our faith, but also of our children’s.
Homeschooling cannot save your child. Private schooling cannot save your child. Christian schooling cannot save your child. Classical schooling cannot save your child. Only Jesus can. And he has promised us that he will not let one of his little ones perish. Be free from your worries and compulsions. Lift up your voice in joy, for you and your children are in your Father’s hands.