Wednesday, August 19, 2015

The Cure for the Mommy Wars

We've all seen them. You login to your Facebook or Pinterest account, and there they are: parenting articles that claim to know the "right" way to do _________. You know the ones...

Top 10 Reasons why Breastfeeding is the ONLY way to nourish your child
Why you should enroll your child in a Montessori/Reggio/Play-based/Academic Preschool
12 Reasons your children should never use electronics
15 Must-Have Apps your toddler needs now to be successful in college
17 Things you MUST do before your child turns 3
10 Warning Signs you have an Over-Scheduled Child
15 Must-have products for your newborn
7 Reasons you don't need a baby registry
Why Time-Out is the Worst. Thing. Ever. for your child
Why Time-Out is the Most effective form of discipline

Obviously, I'm being a bit sarcastic here, but the list goes on and on (and on). If it has anything to do with the family unit, someone has written an article about it, proposing to have the best bedwetting/misbehavior/picky eater/no sleep solution, And you know what? I actually don't doubt that. I don't doubt that the article they've written is what worked best in their specific situation, with their specific child. 

So, what's the real problem with The Mommy Wars? I think it boils down to a few main things.

1. We're arguing over preferences.

to set or hold before or above other persons or things in estimation; like better; choose rather than: to prefer beef to chicken.

When I look at that example, to prefer beef to chicken, it makes the whole thing seem really silly, doesn't it? Would you stop being a friend to someone because they preferred chicken over beef? Or maybe they like salmon? Or (get ready for it) what if they're...vegan?!? No? Ok, so then why would be bicker and argue over what someone else chooses to do with their children in their own home?

2. We're being foolish.

...when they measure themselves with themselves and compare themselves with one another, they are without understanding and behave unwisely.

2 Corinthians 10:12 AMP
At the heart of the Mommy Wars is the unholy desire to compare ourselves to one another. But the danger of comparison is that the results are devastating: we become self-obsessed and prideful. We either become arrogant, believing that we are the better Mom, or we fall into self-pity, feeling sorry for ourselves because we don't measure up. Either of those are rooted in pride, which always ends in destruction.

3. If we claim to be Christ-followers and are still participating in the bickering, then we aren't walking in love.

Paul is very clear: if we're walking in love, then we do not act in ways that are unbecoming. Luckily for us, he lays out what that means. If we walk in love (God's love in us), then we aren't boastful or haughty, conceited or arrogant, rude or insisting on our way. We don't get offended when people disagree with us and we don't keep score.

4. It reveals our greatest fears: that we are not enough, that we have something to prove.

Hear me well, Mama. You have nothing to prove. You don't need to prove that you deserve a seat at the Motherhood Table by showing the world that you're right and everyone else is wrong.

The root of this issue (and perhaps the greatest problem with the Mommy Wars) is that we're sitting on the sidelines, demanding that others validate our decisions. We're looking for external approval, instead of readily receiving the approval we already have in Christ. 

For far too long, we've been looking for other Moms to say, "Yes, you're doing it right!" instead of listening to the voice of Father God, guiding us, and directing our steps. We've idolized other people's opinions of us and our choices. But Jesus said, "My sheep hear my voice." We don't need 1000 voices telling us we're doing it right; we need to hear the voice of the One that matters.

If you find yourself in the trenches of the Mommy Wars, it's not too late to get out. Spend some time at the feet of Jesus. Ask him if you believe the lie that you have to prove yourself. Ask him to replace that lie with his truth. Below, I've included a free printable Prayer Guide for Confident Motherhood to help you move beyond the Mommy War battlefields and into Jesus' loving arms.

Download the free printable 
Confident Motherhood Prayer Guide here!

And don't forget to join the conversation in the comments...what do the Mommy Wars mean to you? Do you feel yourself having to justify your choices to other Moms? How can we support one another, even if our choices are different?


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