My previous post on this topic offered some flowery descriptions about why we mother differently. It’s definitely because God created us uniquely. Just as orchids are regal and wildflowers are untamed, so also some moms are poised and others are more animated. The reserved mom isn’t likely to raise the roof of her home every day, or ever. Nor will the bubbly mom run a reserved and rigid home.
IT DOESN’T MEAN ONE IS BETTER THAN THE OTHER!
Believing there’s some best way to be a mother leads to depression or a critical spirit. In which category do you fall? You may be depressed because you feel you don’t measure up, or you may be proud because you think you’re the perfect measuring stick. Because Jesus was so hard on those who thought they were better than the rest, let me offer another thought on why we mother differently: How we were raised impacts how we raise our children.
Our parents shared values or not, provided for us well or not, had a great marriage or not. If you grew up in an idyllic setting, with education, opportunities, and peace, realize that the mom who mothers differently may have grown up in a spiritual, emotional or financial desert. The earth under her was dry growing up. There was fighting in her house, maybe even physical or sexual abuse. There was poverty, bad manners, and no homework happening at home. No wholesome entertainment, no Bible stories, not even any books. You think of spam as unwanted emails. She thinks of Spam as food.
So yeah. That mom over there who’s mothering differently may be a little prickly or rude or rough around the edges, you know, like a cactus. But cacti produce flowers too. Cacti moms can withstand heat and trials that would wilt the fragile flowers among us. Cacti moms produce cacti kids who seem less beautiful and refined than your primroses. But that mom and her children will be able to minister in wastelands, prisons, and neighborhoods to which God would never send you because you would hide all day like a morning glory.
So hail to the Cacti moms! You are an example to your children – and to all of us – of forgiveness, resilience, redemption, and faith.