As a mother, I have to wonder: How does my lack of joy affect my kids?
Yesterday I shared the 3 things that often steal my joy. While thinking about the many times when I have lost my joy, it made me stop and think about the effects my lack of joy has on my children, and I asked myself these two questions.
HOW DOES MY LACK OF JOY AFFECT MY CHILDREN?
1. Will they want to know and love my God?
I remember hearing a talk about giving your kids a heart for God, and she was talking about making our homes fun, and being fun. Then she asked this big question: “Why would our children want to know and love our God if we are always grumpy and unhappy?” Such a GOOD point! If I am teaching my kids about God and His Word, and trying to instill a love for Him in them, all that teaching will be undone if they see me as an unhappy, stressed, worried mom.
We can’t force our children’s hearts to love God, but we can give them a hunger for God by showing the joy we have in Him. There’s the old saying “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink – BUT you can salt his oats.” We can give our kids more of a thirst for God if we are careful to salt their oats by our daily living. Seeing that we have the joy of the Lord will give our kids more of a thirst for God.
2. Will they learn to trust God with their problems and needs?
I can teach them the importance of prayer, and encourage them to go to God with their problems. However, if they SEE me stressing and worrying about circumstances or situations all the time, they are going to have a hard time trusting.
Often when I find myself burdened down about something, and feel it is affecting my spirit, I will talk to the kids about it, and suggest that we pray and ask for God’s help in that situation. I want them to see that when I’m concerned, the best thing to do is go to God.
I have also made it a point to share with them ways that God has answered prayers and provided in different situations. I especially do that when sharing a burden with them, to remind myself that I can trust God with this new worry, and to help build their faith and trust in God.
As moms, we all have occasional times when we lose our joy. That’s normal – it’s okay. The important thing is to realize what makes you lose your joy, and then focus on what you can do to be more joyful.
(In my next post, I will be sharing 5 Secrets To Being a More Joyful Mother.)