Sunday, March 11, 2012

Fighting Discouragement-Listening to the Right Voice

I am going back and reading and reposting some of these devotions I wrote before I went through the most painful trial so far that I've experienced in my life. I am astounded at the prayers that I have prayed and how God has answered them in His way, not my own. I wrote this last year. Looking back now, these trials were tiny compared to what we are going through now. But God was preparing me and teaching me through them. Thank you, God!
Dear Mothers,

These past few months the enemy has tried discouraging me in my mothering. He has attacked me on so many different levels. I've been thoroughly pressed down, but I have to say, I have not been destroyed.

As trial after trial has come, I have found myself on my knees more and more. As my confidence in being a “good” parent has been shaken to the core, I have asked God to restore me from the ground up. I have been humbled to say the least.

I came across a very comforting passage in a book called, Good and Angry by Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller.

“As parents, we mainly discipline in response to behavior, not in response to the heart. We all wish our children would want to choose righteousness, delight in humility, and embrace a life of grace, but they don’t. We may pray with and for our kids, have fun family devotion times, and take them to church, but still be met with a bad attitude when we ask for the least bit of cooperation…

The way you discipline and the routines you develop in family life till the soil for a deeper work of the Holy Spirit in their lives. Your day-to-day parenting can build a framework of character within children so that someday the Spirit of God will breathe life into that framework and create a responsive heart on the deeper level.”

Oh, let me say that again! “Someday the Spirit of God will breathe life into that framework and create a responsive heart on the deeper level.” You cannot fathom the hope that God gave me after reading that. I cannot breath the spiritual life into my children, that is God’s job. In His own time, my children will have responsive hearts to all I have taught them. I may not see it in the day to day. I see glimpses. I see bits and pieces of unselfishness and watch and pray for them as they fight their sin nature. I see them forgive a friend that has hurt them. I see them thinking about how Jesus would respond to a situation. I see them learning obedience. If they learn to obey me, then they will hopefully learn to obey their Heavenly Father.

The enemy likes to attack us with general terms. Things like, “You are a failure as a mother” or “No matter how much you teach them the Word of God they will rebel.” But I have learned that if we need to change, the Holy Spirit does not bring a spirit of condemnation. He convicts us of specific things and He does it lovingly. If we are not careful as mothers, we end up listening to the wrong voice, which in turn gives us a spirit of defeat. If we listen to the right voice, the voice of the Holy Spirit, we listen to a gentle voice who prompts us to do right and gives us hope.

Whose voice are you listening to? When trials come and you start to despair, remember that if you are in Christ Jesus, there is always hope. Get on your knees and ask what you can change and then do it, no matter how hard it is. Embrace the sacrifice of it. It will only bring you closer to your goal. My goal is to raise godly children for the Lord and warriors for His Kingdom. Imagine the child testing you to your absolute limit as being an effective member of the Church! And you, as a mother, had a part in that. Glory to God!

Fight discouragement! The only thing the enemy should be able to do is to drive you to your knees. And that my friends, is the safest place to be.

From One Mom to Another,


Kristin Bridgman said...

Bravo for this post! I so identify! The enemy tried to get a hold of me 5 years ago when I had a son leave us. He tried to tell me I had failed. But I had godly pastors, friends, and a husband who would not let me listen to the wrong voice. I told that enemy to scat, he was not welcome around us. I have been on my knees and fasting ever since. And the son is coming back step by step! I even wrote a post about the voices we listen to.
I'm so glad you are on your knees, that is where all should be!
Wonderful post! :)

Anonymous said...


Although I currently am not a Mother, I was inspired by your post.

Your post taught me that in all things, we have to put our trust in Christ. We can't make anyone do anything because that job belongs to our Savior. It reminds me of the scripture in 1 Corinthians 3, where it talks about Paul and Apolos being the ones who "water the plant," but it's God that makes that "plant" grow.

I pray that the Moms who read your post today will be edified, and encouraged! :)

-L. Rose

Homestead Living said...

I too can relate to this. Some days I feel so defeated and wondering if my instruction is even being heard. Then the Lord is so gracious to give me little bits of fruit here and there just to encourage me to keep on.

Mothering has stretched me more than anything else has. Like you said, it keeps me on my knees!

I am so thankful for the promise he gives us in Philippians 1:6 'He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus" This applies to both me and my children.

Praise God!!!


Tiffany said...

This was a beautiful, thought-provoking post! Thank you for sharing your heart and being transparent. "I cannot breath the spiritual life into my children, that is God’s job." I am going to carry this truth in my heart.

Your blog is lovely.
Be Blessed.

Homestead Living said...

We do indeed have much in common. Including the fact that my husband used to work full time as a fire fighter / paramedic. :) Too funny! I love how the Lord brings people together.

Cheesemakin' Mamma said...

I feel choked up after reading this. I really needed to hear this today. OK, picking up the pieces. "God give me patience with this child who WILL BE an effective member of your kindom!"

mommyx12 said...

Great post Stacie. It is a process, one that takes a bit of learning here, a bit there. Overall, once they've all grown up it is then you see the fruit fully ripened. And you know that all the tilling has been so worth it.

His bondservant said...

Great post is so easy to listen to the lies of the enemy... I have been there my friend. Praying for your victory in all things and believing in the God who is conquerer over all! God bless you!

Jill said...

Great post Stacie! Thanks for sharing!


Donna B said...

Great post Stacie! Thank you for sharing. I too am feeling the attacks. They have gotten much stronger since all the children are home for school now. It seems that once you get on the correct road, Satan has to strike back, particularly when you are raising the children to be God loving people. Satan knows that we are going to win the war, but he is going to try to make sure God has few members in His army. And since we are raising the warriors we are attacked.

Thank you for the reminder that the Holy Spirit does not condemn, but only encourages you to move in the correct direction.

Jenn said...

WOW!!!! Stacie, this was so powerful! Thank you so much for sharing this! Touched my heart!!!!

Shanda said...

“Someday the Spirit of God will breathe life into that framework and create a responsive heart on the deeper level.”
Thank you for this quote. I have two 20 years old soons that I am praying for. I feel I do all I could to the best of my ability when they were younger and now just have to trust and believe that God will work in their hearts.

Ma said...

I cannot breath the spiritual life into my children, that is God’s job.

So true, once we really embrace that, we can be more at peace.

OurLilFullFam said...

Very true words indeed!

I am reading a book called "Give them Grace" and it is all about pointing to the gospel and how that(and nothing else) will help them.

Still praying for you,


Camille said...

Dear Stacie ~ Trials are the means of grace in our lives. Oh how painful it can be! But, it is an evidence of God's Hand in our lives!! Joyful thought!! Cling to HIM. HE holds you.

With Love and prayers,
(Psalm 91)

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