You might be wondering what to give those mom's in your life this Christmas season. This list might help you with that, but I think you might be surprised by what a mommy really needs...
2. Discipleship. Find an older woman you admire and want to emulate, ask her to disciple you and teach you how she does it. We do not become good at it the instant we become it (wife, mother, Christian); it is a process and one we must patiently learn over time. This is called discipleship: "
3. Selfless Husbands. Who understand that this mommy job isn't an easy one. If your wife looks frazzled, instead of plopping in front of the TV the moment you get home, ask what you can do to help. A parentS job is a 24-7 job - do it together. A simple, "What can I do to help you?" means so so so so so much.
4. A Moment. This mom-job is a 24-7 job. It doesn't matter if you "take a vacation" because you still do the same job, just in a different location. Every mom needs a moment here and there to relax. Need a perfect gift? Give a busy mommy a massage/pedicure/manicure and then offer to babysit while she enjoys this hour of pampering.
5. A Long, Hot UNINTERRUPTED Shower. They're rare and when they happen, it's wonderful.
6. Prayer Warriors. And I mean people who say, "I'm praying for you!" and actually do it. Prayer is Powerful. We need prayer for patience, kindness, self-control, our ability to serve willingly, motivation and energy to get through the to-do list, &etc.
7. Encouragement. There will always be people (with or without children) who want to give advice about parenting. The last thing mommy's need is un-asked-for parental advice (they have friends, sisters, mothers, and teachers for that -- see 1 and 2), and when they need advice they have certain people they go to for it. If they didn't ask, don't give it. Instead understand that what mommy's really need are these things listed in this list.
8. Books. For years, people have been writing about what has worked for them. There's no need to re-write the book, so research what you're doing (breastfeeding, discipline, newborn scheduling, etc. etc.) and find someone who's proven methods also work for you. I will forever be thankful for my breast-feeding book that allowed me to go into it confidently, for Babywise that helped me understand my colicky baby's needs, and Tedd Tripp's Shepherding a Child's Heart where I began to understand biblical discipline.
Also, the most powerful book in any mother's life is the Bible. Spend time in it every day. You'll begin to notice the Holy Spirit using His Word to guide you through your day.
9. Loving Husbands. And yes, I purposely put husbands twice. They do need to help the mother of their child, however, (and I'd argue more than anything) a mother needs to know she is loved. If her husband does not take the time to do this every day it begins to reflect the atmosphere in the home, and believe me the kids will notice. The authors of Babywise, Ezzo and Bucknam have a perfect quote for this piece: "Children need to see an ongoing love relationship that includes mom and dad enjoying each other as friends and not just parents. They also need to see their parents talking, laughing, working together and resolving conflicts with a mutual respect for each other. We cannot over emphasize this point: the more parents demonstrate love for each other, the more they saturate their child's senses with confidence of a loving, safe and secure world."
10. Jesus. "We need to acknowledge that our many failures only solidify our desperate need for Jesus. His power is made perfect in our weaknesses, and he will give us strength each day." (hiddenwithyou.com) We must also acknowledge the fact that Jesus told us a "Helper" was being sent and we cannot believe that the "Holy Spirit" is a myth or a ghost. He is real because Jesus said He was real. "... the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you." (John 14:26, Jesus was speaking to his disciples in this text, and John specifically wrote this to prove that Jesus is God - and that everything He said and did proved that fact (including what He said in this text, that His disciples would remember everything He said, hence why John wrote the book of John) - but as believers we cannot ignore the fact that we are offered the same help.) He came here to help us, guide us, and once you become a Christian you must believe that He is there with you at all times. If you believe in Him, believe everything that He taught. Once you begin to rely on Jesus and His Word, the Holy Spirit will help you remember it and when we're weak - HE IS STRONG; and when we are strong, it's because HE IS WITH US.
What every mother needs isn't necessarily a list of the season's must have items, but rather her Bible, trust in an all-powerful, mighty, sovereign God, a husband and a group of women who offer encouragement, love, and a moment here and there to relax or accomplish a task without interruption.
P.S. I sincerely hope there are some items on this list that will jolt a Christmas gift idea for those mom's in your life!