In today’s day of open judgment, while hiding behind a screen or whispering gossip, we’ve categorized each other into good moms and bad moms. We are basing such judgments on our own opinions and experiences. We should be asking “what makes a good mom according to the Bible?”
I am a firm believer in measuring everything against scripture. The Bible is our plumb line. It teaches what is right and what is wrong. It also does not change. Society changes and cultures vary, but the Bible is the living word of God, a beacon of direction that always leads to the right place.
If you are a new mom seeking to do the best job you can while holding that sweet new bundle or you feel like you’ve totally messed up and want to make some changes, this post is for you. Grab a cup of your favorite drink, get comfy, and let’s explore the true qualities of a good mom.
What are the Qualities of a Good Mom
I’m sure you want a list here, but I’m not going to give you that. Motherhood is not a checklist and the Bible is not a character-building to-do list. I’m going to give you one quality of a good mom and expand on that because there is more to it than you might think.
As I answer your question “what makes a good mom” I’m going to begin with a story. This was a turning point in my journey of being a homemaker and seeking God’s will for my journey as mother and wife.
Titus 2:4-5 An answer to what makes a good mom
“Train the young women to love their husbands and children.”
I stared at that verse for a moment and continued with the remainder of Titus Chapter 2.
I was restless this morning, annoyed, frustrated, and plagued with an all-out bad attitude. I had been like this for three days now and was praying hard for some kind of relief.
What is wrong with me?! I nearly yelled at God as I sat in the quiet by the fire (yes, fire, as it has been rainy and cold for the entire above mentioned cranky days), coffee in hand.
I opened my Bible to Titus and was sure there was an answer for me somewhere in this ancient text. I read the entire book, all three chapters, and sat back. Sure, lots of good practical advice here about living a devout Christian life.
Is there an attitude change here? I really needed one!
Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled. (Titus 2:3-5)
At almost 40 years old, I am not sure if I fall into the “older” or “younger” women category but Paul has made it very clear the kind of behavior that is acceptable.
I kept going back to “to train the young women to love their husbands and children”.
I almost had a bit of disrespect for it. Doesn’t loving your husband and children come naturally? How can you TEACH someone to love?
Isn’t that the very lesson I’d been pounding into my bickering boys’ heads? How we treat each other shows love?
UGH! I have not been practicing my own preaching!
The spilled milk made me angry because it was just one more mess I had to clean up. I didn’t recognize it as an act of love from my 7 year old who was trying to help me.
My husband’s inability to clean up after himself was my frustration because he was adding more work to my already burdened schedule. And the alternative would be what? Not having a husband? The very thought brought tears. He takes such good care of me and I get angry over socks (and papers and books and boots) on the floor?
At what point had my family become a chore rather than an act of love? One more thing to check off my to-do list each day. The responsibility of taking care of them had overshadowed my motive.
What if each irritation then became an opportunity? An opportunity to not only show love, but teach it and example it?
How to be a Good Mom: The Simple Answer
How to be a good mom?
Loving your children is your answer.
But now things are going to get a little more difficult. True love is not the same kind of love the world teaches.
Most of us have the instinctual kind of love that makes us want to take care of our children, feed and clothe them and give them a happy, healthy childhood. So do bears and lions, pigs and dogs.
We were created in the image of God and have the capacity for a much deeper kind of love. This kind of love is modeled for us throughout scripture as we see God’s mercy, grace, and compassion. We see it when Jesus weeps at the grave of Lazarus and gives his life for us on a Roman cross.
Paul teaches us what Christain love looks like. It pertains to parenting as well.
Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. (1 Corinthians 13:4-7)
The parts of this verse that apply to my question about what makes a good mom are:
- suffers long (is patient)
- is kind
- does not seek its own (puts her family first)
- is not provoked (does not get angry easily)
- bears all things (weathers the ups and downs with grace)
- hopes all things
Do you see now why I said earlier that each frustration could be turned into an act of love? You can teach them how to be patient with each other’s shortcomings as you are patient with theirs (and your own!).
Kindness is not giving your child everything they desire. It is stopping what you are doing, squatting down to their level, and really listening to what they have to say. It is spending hours making meals and snacks, cleaning up the mess, and doing it all over again. This was a real struggle for me! Check out: 15 Bible Verses About Serving and How They Made Me a Better Mom
When Titus instructs the older women to teach the younger women how to love their children and husbands and to be keepers of the home, this is what he is talking about. This kind of sacrificial love does not come naturally to us and can leave us feeling empty, unappreciated, and frustrated.
So, what if we do get angry easily and are simply not bearing all things with grace? What if we are feeling as if all of our efforts are being thwarted?
We have to plug into Jesus!
This kind of unconditional love associated with being a good mom comes from God and without that constant contact, it is not something we can do.
For years I had heard people say what a great calling motherhood was and while I enjoyed my children and was thankful for them, it wasn’t until the day God taught me the meaning of Titus 2 that I realized that by loving and serving my family, I was actually loving and serving God.
Suddenly homemaking took on a whole new meaning. I began to find enjoyment in the small things such as the look on the kids’ faces when they bit into a freshly baked cookie or how a race down the driveway bonded us in a way I never expected.
Taking care of them was no longer a chore. It was a calling, a ministry, an opportunity to love in a way that would impact generations to come.
If You are Asking How to be a Good Mom…
Plug into Jesus and search for the one true love and then fill your home with it.
I’m not going to pretend as if I have mastered this. I screw up every single day, but I ask for forgiveness and try again. I pray diligently for my family and study God’s word. Most of all, I pour my heart into the role that God has given me and the return has been amazing. The change in my own heart has set a tone for the entire family.
God is good!
I mentioned prayer as an answer to what makes a good mom. Check out these posts before you go!