If you’re a mom, you’ve probably given yourself one or more, “Mom Awards”. You know the ones I mean: “Worst Mom of the Hour/Day/Week/Month/Year or Decade”; and the most despised: “Worst Mom of the Century”.
I have a closet full! There are days when I received all of them in one afternoon.
I’ll never forget one of the “Worst Mom” awards I received… I gave it to myself the winter before this family photo was taken.
In my defense… it was winter, and it’s not easy being a mom of preschoolers cooped up in the house for days. Danny had developed a habit of masterfully pushing Bobby down every time he saw Bobby standing still. I warned Danny: If you do that again, I’m going to push you!
Danny pushed. Bobby fell and started crying. I gave Danny the “you’re in for it now” look!
Immediately, Danny started to quickly back away, in stocking feet on a vinyl floor. I reached toward him, he lost his balance, slipped, fell and hit his head on the cabinet. He started crying. Bobby was still crying. And I sat down beside them, crying.
That night, sitting between Dan’s bed and Bob’s crib, still crying, I wrote them both a letter of apology in case they ever recalled this horrible day in therapy as adults. I still have the letters. Just in case.
There, it’s out there. I’m the worst mom ever. And, I have more stories I could tell…..
Guilt? Yes! Feeling like a failure? Yes! Like King David, I cried out to the Lord:
“My guilt overwhelms me – it is a burden too heavy to bear. My wounds fester and stink because of my foolish sins. I am bent over and racked with pain. All day long I walk around filled with grief.” – Psalm 38:4-6 NLT
There is no way to remove the guilt. We may try to cover over it with kind acts – I probably made cookies for them later on, or let them watch their favorite TV show. I may have tried to ease my conscience by telling myself I was doing my best to be a good mom. I had to keep my word. I had to teach Danny right behavior. It was just a little bump. Barely nothing. And surely nothing in the grand scheme of things. And, while all of that was true, my heart ached because I had hurt my child by my own hand.
There was only one way to remove the guilt: Come to Jesus and confess the sin.
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” – 1 John 1:9NIV
“For our guilty consciences have been sprinkled with Christ’s blood to make us clean…” – Hebrews 10:22 NLT
As a mom I’ve gotten really good, I think, at asking for forgiveness, both from the Lord and from the boys. Sometimes now, the boys will laugh at me when I bring up long ago events and ask for their forgiveness. It is worth the laughter because I love to dance in the freedom that comes with forgiveness.
*Previously published on 1/24/14. While Marcia enjoys time with her family for Memorial Day, we will be repeating previously published devotions.