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Have you ever had a hard day as a mom? (If you said no, then please email me your number! I’d like to talk to you NOW!)
If you’re a mom, then you probably know what I’m talking about. You know the days when you have a thousand and one requests before you even have time to get yourself readied for the day.
You may have missed your Quiet Time and the baby’s diaper leaked through and it’s not even 7:00am yet. Maybe you spilled your coffee (which was at this point, the only hope you had of making it through the day) and you forgot to put away the chicken you were defrosting last night. (Please tell me I’m not the only one!)
Sadly, in those moments, I am ashamed to say that I don’t always shine the love of Christ. And more often than not, I let my flesh come through. (It’s a constant process – I’m growing!)
And so that got me to thinking. I need a plan, and chances are, you also need a plan!
I like actionable. Actionable gives you a point to start and then something to do! When someone gives me something to do, I feel more hopeful since I’m not stuck wondering where to begin.
So in my attempt to develop GODLY character qualities in myself as a mom, I’m going to bring you along with me! Let’s do this together!
IT STARTS WITH BEING IN THE WORD
In order to be like God, you need to be with God. Meeting with Him on a regular basis will be KEY developing godly character.
You need to spend time meditating on God’s Word. Read it! Pray it! Memorize it! That alone will do wonders for starting you out growing in godly character!
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(Here is a great book on the Spiritual Disciplines for further reading. I highly recommend it! )
DO AN HONEST AND THOROUGH EVALUATION
This could very well be the hardest part of the assignment.
No one really likes to introspect and pull out things that need to be changed. But in order to do this effectively, you need to start first with an honest and thorough evaluation.
ASK YOURSELF SOME QUESTIONS
- Am I patient?
- Do I have a kind tone when I speak?
- How do I act when I’m angered?
- Am I easily angered?
- Do I reflect the love of Christ to my kids and my family?
- How do I react when things don’t go my way?
- How do I react when chaos arises? (Like someone accidentally breaking a dish or forgetting their homework for the 50th time this week.)
- Am I loving in my discipline?
- How would my family answer these questions? (That’s a tough one!)
I’ve created a set of worksheets to make this a little easier for you to do. I find it easier if you write your answers down. You can download it below!
Will you do me a favor? Will you please write these answers down? Please resist the urge to just skim over them. Rather, spend some time actually reflecting. (I say this, because I know my tendency is to skip right through and in doing so, I miss the purpose of the assignment – which in the end, will lead to you becoming more godly!)
ASK A FRIEND
Sometimes it’s hard to see things clearly in yourself that need to change. And sometimes you just need someone to spur you on.
Ask a friend to help you discern what qualities in your life need to be molded MORE into Christ like-ness. But I would also suggest that you ask your friend to help you GROW in Christ likeness. (We don’t only want to focus on the negative, although beginning with the things that need to be changed gives you a good starting point.)
Choose this friend wisely as you need someone who is willing to be honest as well as encouraging. You need an ‘Iron Sharpens Iron’ kinda friend! 😉 (I have one of these and that friendship is INVALUABLE to me!)
THINK ABOUT THE LEGACY THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO LEAVE
Something that hits me square between the eyes every time I think about it is when I ask myself what my family will think about me when I’m gone.
Will my kids remember me with fondness or will they feel like I was impatient and never pleased?
Evaluate and ask yourself what kind of legacy you want to leave.
Legacy is a word that makes you think far off into a distant time, but I am here to tell you that leaving a legacy starts TODAY.
Will your children think back to their time growing up with you and remember a patient, kind, loving, and godly mom? Not a mom who never made mistakes, but a mom who knew how to take her mistakes to the foot of the cross, confess them, and then drive herself to become more godly as a result.
(My Grandma – pictured above – is leaving an AWESOME legacy!)
PRAY AND ASK GOD TO REVEAL IT TO YOU
Spend some time in prayer and then sit quietly and reflect.
At the same time, ask God to show you what character qualities he wants you to work on. Seek him with your whole heart. Listen to what He lays on your heart.
As you pray, do not only pray that God would reveal what he wants you to work on, (the bad characteristics that need to go) but pray that He would begin to change you to begin to have the godly characteristics that He reveals to you.
KEEP A LIST
Take time to write down all of the characteristics you would like to describe you as a mom.
Write whatever comes to your mind. Also write the things down that you feel like you need to work on. As you faithfully and prayerfully ask God to reveal those things to you, listen. Write down the answers that come to your mind.
Keep your list before you at all times. Make copies to keep in your Bible or a journal. Make copies to put around the house. You’ll want it to refer back to as you work on growing those godly character qualities!
START WITH THE FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT
If you want to develop Godly character traits as a mom, then the Fruits of the Spirit is a great place to start. God has given us an all-inclusive list of things that we can strive for.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. (Galatians 5:22-23 ESV)
Of course every one of us would like to say that ALL of these traits describe us everyday, all day long! But try choosing just one or two things that you want to really work on.
Begin to study them in your quiet time and pray that God would begin to make the Fruits of the Spirit evident in your life.
USE THE LIST IN 1 TIMOTHY 6:11
If you need some more ideas, here is another good list. There are great character qualities to pursue in 1 Timothy 6:11.
But as for you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. (1 Timothy 6:11 ESV)
TAKE A LOOK AT PHILIPPIANS 2:1-8
What better example to follow than that of Christ?
Take time to study His example in Philippians 2:1-8 and pray that God will begin to develop those Godly character traits in you.
So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. (Philippians 2:1-8 ESV)
GOD CAN AND WILL CHANGE YOU
Remember that God is in the business of changing hearts. He changes our hearts of stone into hearts of flesh (Ezekiel 36:26). No one is too far gone for His forgiveness and there is always hope for change.
And true growth is a process that takes time. Moreover, don’t be hard on yourself if you feel like you need so much change. We all need change. Every one of us.
Finally, let the Holy Spirit mold you and shape you to become the GREAT mother that God designed you to be. Rome wasn’t built in a day after all!
And just a teeny tiny tip: Maybe you are reading this and you aren’t a mom. Maybe you’re hoping that one day (soon) you will be. NOW is a GREAT time to start developing godly character traits! You’ll get the added bonus of not having kids to test you out everyday as you learn to use your character traits! 🙂 (Refer back to the first paragraph!) Or perhaps you have raised your kids. You also can strive to work on these godly character traits and in turn teach others (maybe grandkids or another young mother?)
How about you? What godly character traits would you like to strive for? What traits do you feel like you do a good job of showing already? Do you feel satisfied with the legacy you are leaving?
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