May 1, 2019

The Wonder of Motherhood

We have only one chance to raise our children.

Ellen G. White

Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise; that it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth. Eph. 6:2,3, KJV

Mothers, do not forget that God requires you to give your children constant, loving care. He does not want you to be a slave to your children, but He does want you to teach them to live for Him. Day by day give them lessons that will prepare them for future usefulness.

One lesson that you will have to repeat over and over again is the lesson of obedience. Teach your children that they are not to rule, that they are to respect your wishes, and yield to your authority. Thus you are teaching them self-control. . . .

The work of the mother who has a close connection with Christ is of infinite worth. Her ministry of love makes the home a Bethel. Christ works with her, turning the common water of life into the wine of heaven.1

As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you. Isaiah 66:13, NIV.

By gentleness and patience, seek to win your children from wrong. Seek God for wisdom to train them so that they will love you and love God. When it is necessary to refuse them their desires, show them kindly that in doing this you are seeking their highest good.

Love and cherish your children; but do not allow them to follow their own way, for this is the curse of the age in which we live. Show them where they make mistakes, and teach them that if they do not correct these wrongs, they can never be given a place in the mansions that Jesus is preparing for those who love Him. In this way you will retain their love and confidence.2

The love which in faithful care and right training the parents manifest for the child faintly mirrors the love of Jesus for His faithful people.

She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness. Prov. 31:26, KJV.

Whenever the mother can speak a word of commendation for the good conduct of her children, she should do so. She should encourage them by words of approval and looks of love. These will be as sunshine to the heart of a child and will lead to the cultivation of self-respect and pride of character. . . .

Children have sensitive, loving natures. They are easily pleased and easily made unhappy. By gentle discipline in loving words and acts, mothers may bind their children to their hearts. To manifest severity and to be exacting with children are great mistakes. Uniform firmness and unimpassioned control are necessary to the discipline of every family. Say what you mean calmly, move with consideration, and carry out what you say without deviation.3 . . .

When children love and repose confidence in their mother, and have become obedient to her, they have been taught the first lessons in becoming Christians. . . .

In view of the individual responsibility of mothers, every woman should develop a well-balanced mind and pure character, reflecting only the true, the good, and the beautiful.4

Let love be without dissimulation. . . . Be kindly affectioned one to another . . . ; in honour preferring one another. Rom. 12:9, 10, KJV.

Christian courtesy should reign in every household. . . . The wife and mother may bind the hearts of her husband and children to her own by the strong cords of love, if in her intercourse with them she will manifest unvarying love in gentle words and courteous deportment. . . .

[The true wife and mother] will perform her duties with dignity and cheerfulness, not considering it degrading to do with her own hands whatever it is necessary to do in a well-ordered household. . . .

When the mother has gained the confidence of her children, and taught them to love and obey her, she has given them the first lesson in the Christian life. They must love and trust and obey their Saviour, as they love and trust and obey their parents. The love which in faithful care and right training the parents manifest for the child faintly mirrors the love of Jesus for His faithful people.5

Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones. Prov. 16:24.

The mother should cultivate a cheerful, contented, happy disposition. Every effort in this direction will be abundantly repaid in both the physical well-being and the moral character of her children. A cheerful spirit will promote the happiness of her family and in a very great degree improve her own health.

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In the children committed to her care, every mother has a sacred charge from God. “Take this son, this daughter,” He says; “train it for Me; give it a character ‘polished after the similitude of a palace,’ that it may shine in the courts of the Lord forever.” . . .

There is a God above, and the light and glory from His throne rests upon the faithful mother as she tries to educate her children to resist the influence of evil. No other work can equal hers in importance. . . .

The mother who appreciates this will regard her opportunities as priceless. Earnestly will she seek, in her own character and by her methods of training, to present before her children the highest ideal. . . . Diligently she will study His Word. She will keep her eyes fixed upon Christ, that her own daily experience, in the lowly round of care and duty, may be a true reflection of the one true Life.6

  1. In Review and Herald, Jan. 24, 1907.
  2. In Signs of the Times, Nov. 14, 1911.
  3. Testimonies for the Church (Mountain View, Calif.: Pacific Press Pub. Assn., 1948), vol. 3, p. 532.
  4. In Health Reformer, August 1877.
  5. In Signs of the Times, Sept. 9, 1886.
  6. The Ministry of Healing (Mountain View, Calif.: Pacific Press Pub. Assn., 1905), pp. 374-378.

These excerpts are taken from Reflecting Christ (Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald Pub. Assn., 1985), pp. 184, 186, 189-191. Seventh-day Adventists believe that Ellen G. White (1827-1915) exercised the biblical gift of prophecy during more than 70 years of public ministry.