I was asked to speak to a “Mothers Of Preschoolers” group last year and decided on the topic “Be Intentional and Do What You Can.” You see, my mother was a Christian and she lived the gospel in front of me. I wanted to be like her, so I did what she did. I see my three-year old daughter imitating me in the same way. I am convinced now more than ever that if Christian moms truly want to share the gospel with their children and have the gospel impact their children’s lives, the passion cannot begin and end on Sunday mornings. Moms have to be intentional about cultivating their own personal relationship with the Lord through prayer, Bible study, fellowship, etc. Secondly, moms must be intentional about sacrificially living the gospel. I promise that your children will take notice.
I was excited to discover the Helen Lee wrote a book about moms intentionally living out the gospel with a “missional” focus. I am overjoyed to connect with her at Synergy 2011 and pick up my “Missional Mom” book this weekend. (P.S. It is not too late to register for the Synergy conference.) I will certainly discuss the book with you in “Natasha’s Study.”
Until then, here’s what Helen has to say:
When I became a mother, as much as I loved and treasured my new baby boy, I have to confess that I found the transition to motherhood very challenging. It wasn’t just the physical changes that I went through as a mother; it was also an internal struggle for me. I found myself wrestling with so many questions about what my life was supposed to be like now that I was a mom. Questions such as:
- Was motherhood supposed to be my only calling in life?
- What was I supposed to do with my experiences and education that God had given me before I was a mom?
- Why did the idea that I was supposed to completely immerse myself in motherhood and nothing else feel uncomfortable to me?
And the very process of asking these questions brought feelings of guilt, that I was a bad mother to be even asking these questions! So it was a very confusing time for me.
The idea of being “missional” became the key for me to understand how to integrate motherhood into my life. Being missional is about having an outward orientation to your life, a desire to be used by God to further his ongoing mission in the world. It means that you don’t just think of missionaries as being those people in your church who go abroad to spread the Gospel. Instead, you realize that each and every one of us who call ourselves Christ-followers are missionaries with a call to have an impact in the world around us in some way.
In other words, you are a missionary, wherever and however God has called and gifted you to reach out and love others. Our lives are not just meant to be about pouring solely into our family alone. Our homes are not just meant to be havens we create for our own comfort. Instead, they are also the places where we are to train the next generation of Christians to be mission-minded.
So, our calling as mothers is critical, but never to be placed above God’s mission for us as Christians, which is to be his witnesses and make disciples of all the nations. And as mothers, our opportunities to be missional happen all around us, if we take advantage of them–when we are the grocery store, when we are at our children’s schools, when we are in our workplaces or places of ministry, for example. And of course, with our own children.
As I write about in my recent book on this topic, missional moms do not ignore the stirrings that God places in their hearts, minds, and souls. As they follow God’s call to take a step of faith in whatever way He calls, little by little, those steps of faith lead into bigger adventures that they could never have imagined. That is the kind of motherhood experience I want to have, one that is fulfilling, purposeful, and exciting as we see God working through us to touch the lives of others. It’s the kind of motherhood that characterizes those who are missional moms.
–By Helen Lee, author of The Missional Mom (www.themissionalmom.com)
How do you believe motherhood can impact your children? In what ways are you preparing your children or other children within your areas of influence to truly live out the gospel?
© Natasha L. Robinson 2011
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