By Alyssa Minaker on @Deenamadams
This week’s hope story is by a writer friend I met through an online conference. I hope you’ll be blessed and challenged by her words about mothers and daughters.
If you’d like to consider submitting a hope story, check out this post for information.
For some of us, the word mother can cause heartache because it reminds us of the tensions and unresolved hurts we have with our mother. That was me throughout most of my life.
I thought she was the one who needed to be fixed. She needed Jesus––I already had Him. It wasn’t until my mother came to Christ and had a radical change in her lifestyle that I realized I, too, needed healing.
Despite her transformation, I still wanted to keep her at an arm’s length, and I noticed her flaws. My heart toward her needed mending.
Jesus wanted to teach me how to be a daughter to her.
I knew I loved being God’s daughter.
I trust him.
I seek his guidance.
I respect his ways.
I listen to him closely.
I admire him.
I love him wholeheartedly.
Could I say the same things about my mother?
Do I trust her?
Do I seek out her advice?
Do I respect her life choices even if I don’t agree with them?
Do I listen to her when she speaks?
Do I show my admiration for her?
Do I really love her for her?
Some of you might feel it is impossible to do these things for your mother because of who she is. Maybe she’s really difficult or disinterested in being close.
Yet, consider not placing your focus on the circumstances of your relationship but on God’s heart.
Ask God to show you how to be a daughter to her. This will look different from person to person. All our circumstances are different. Boundaries are good. Rebuilding trust takes lots of time.
Taking all of that into account, we can still find ourselves at the feet of Jesus surrendering to Him every ounce of our being.
Ask, what do you have to teach me, Lord, about being a daughter?
I felt the Lord leading me to call my mother every week. I was overwhelmed by this at first, but as I prayed for my mother and spent time worshipping God before our phone calls, I felt the Lord’s presence in our conversations. We laughed! We shared our real selves. We talked about hard things.
I’m still learning to love my mother though. I am very imperfect. I still feel overwhelmed at times. It’s a big commitment for me time and energy-wise, but the good that has come from it has been worth it.
I’m learning to be a better listener and encourager.
I’m learning to think well of her, to assume the best, and not to judge or critique her. I’m pointing out what I love about her. I’m learning to see the ways I can learn from her. I’m asking questions. I’m learning about her dreams and her fears. And, I’m sharing mine too.
Sometimes it’s easier to be the giver than the receiver. Being a daughter means I’m also receiving from her. This means I need to open up and be vulnerable about my own thoughts, struggles, fears, and hopes.
Sometimes our mothers don’t know how to give well or in the way we feel loved. We may need to communicate about what makes us feel loved, and we also might need to release our idealized expectations.
Ultimately, God fulfills us.
However, we can be in a place where we are willing to receive what our mothers do offer.
It’s a messy learning process being a daughter, especially for those of us with past hurts. Yet, God is in our mother-daughter relationships. He is for us. He works all things for the good of those who love him.
Sometimes we just need to be willing to allow Him to take us deeper into godly daughtership.
Do not think your circumstances with your mother are too complicated for God to transform. We serve a God of miracles. He gives us strength, renews our minds and spirits, and gives us the ability to love beyond comprehension, as we lean into him.
Take responsibility for your part by being submitted to Jesus, keeping your heart soft and your mind open to the things He may ask of you.
When you’re with Him, it may be hard, but it’s going to be GOOD.
Join the conversation. What steps can you add to Alyssa’s suggestions for connecting deeper with your mother or daughter? Do you find your relationship with mom/daughter comes naturally and easy? Or do you have to work at staying close and connected?