We hear the judgmental attitudes all the time:
- “I can’t believe she put her child in that private school. Creating snobs!”
- “Homeschooling? They’re all socially awkward.”
- “Why is she OK with her children attending public school? Doesn’t she care about what they’re learning?”
- “Not using cloth diapers? Doesn’t she know what those Pampers are doing to our landfills?”
So what’s a women’s minister to do? How can we call a truce between these diverse opinions?
We must begin by understanding what creates the judgmental attitudes: fear. Fear of making the wrong decisions for one’s children may create a feeling of insecurity that leads to second-guessing the choices they’ve made and attacking the choices of others. Doubts start swirling around and an edgy stressful environment of fear results.
Let’s face it — motherhood is scary business in today’s world. There are threats to the health and wellbeing of children lurking in every corner. Moms want to protect their children and be the best mom they can be. That’s a lot of pressure.
As women’s ministers we must grasp the intensity and reality of these emotions. We must encourage moms to seek courage in Christ and depend fully on God’s leadership. As leaders, let’s strive to be examples of walking by faith and surrendering to following Christ.
How can you point moms to Christ?
- Encourage moms at every opportunity. Every mom is unique; every child is different. What works for one child and mom may not for another.
- Stay connected with moms. Investing time with individual moms is key in combating the judgmental wars of motherhood.
- Provide convenient Bible studies and small groups with childcare. Equip women to know how to discern God’s leadership.
- Establish a prayer network for moms. Prayer brings solutions and calms fears.
- Create environments that promote communication and build relationships between moms. Judging one another is less likely when we know and understand each other. Add relationship-building time into your schedule of all events.
Let’s focus on creating an atmosphere of unity where hearts can be shared, moms can be inspired, and courage is given. We can make a difference in this generation of moms and the generations to come!
Dr. Deb Douglas is the minister to women at First Baptist Church, Bossier City, La., and a LifeWay Ministry Multiplier, launched her first women’s Bible study at the age of 20. Her passion is encouraging and equipping women to serve. She is also a freelance writer and contributed to Transformed Lives: Taking Women’s Ministry to the Next Level, Revised & Expanded. Deb graduated from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary with a Masters of Arts of Christian Education/Women’s Ministry and a Doctor of Education in Ministry degree. She is the wife of Paul, mom of Jared and Katie, mother-in-law to Emily and Jacob, and grandmother to Caroline.