Perfect Mothers vs. Balanced Mothers

By January 26, 2010Featured Posts, Get Inspired

I am a perfect mother.

Oh? What? You didn’t know that? I’m surprised since I try so hard to broadcast that fact to everyone. That’s why I rush my kids out the door so we won’t be late. That’s why I spit on my hand and wipe their faces so that they won’t look messy. That’s why I whisper harshly to my children, telling them to behave in public.

And all that trying to “be perfect” only increases my imperfection.

How many of us fall into the trap of believing that we need to be “perfect moms” who raise “perfect children?” That we need to mother a certain way, dress a certain way, keep our homes a certain way and discipline a certain way. That our kids need to behave a certain way, look a certain way and speak a certain way.

Those are called puppets, not children. And we are actors, not mothers.

Perfection vs. Balance

The world calls us to be “perfect” mothers, but I believe God calls us to be “balanced” mothers.

A “perfect” mother puts appearance above relationship. A “balanced” mother sacrifices appearance for relationship.

A “perfect” mother seeks approval from others. A “balanced” mother seeks approval from God.

A “perfect” mother finds reward in perceived success. A “balanced” mother’s reward is a peaceful heart, family and home.

A “perfect” mother perpetuates the lie and spreads disillusionment. A “balanced” mother breaks the lie and spreads hope, truth and inspiration.

The Challenge

The challenge for us today is to focus on being balanced rather than perfect. That every moment we’d love our children more than our clean house or the approving look of a stranger. That our confidence, strength, hope and identity would be found in God and the trust He’s put in us by giving us His perfect little gifts that look to us and call us “Mommy.”

How To Be A Balanced Mother

Here’s the problem. I can’t be a balanced mom. Neither can you. We can’t do it alone. As humans we crave the approval of others. Until we migrate our identity from this world to the arms of God, we will strive to be perfect mothers. That’s why I’m so passionate about spending time praying and reading every morning. Before the voices of others crowd out His, we need to hear from Him that He has given us everything we need to love well. We need to be reminded that we are precious, beautiful, powerful and worthy of the love of the Almighty, Everlasting God. Because once we hear that….who cares what anyone else thinks.

And that, right there, my friends is a truth that demands a good fist pump.

Simple Start

In reality, though, words are cheap. Action speaks loudly. So, here are 2 simple things you can do to take action towards being a balanced mom:

1. Take 1 minute right now to pray that God would begin to change every facet of your heart so that it can reflect His. No one tries to balance with their eyes closed. No, they have a focal point. Pray that God would be your focal point today. And, yes, you only have to pray for 1 minute. I’m all about low goals here at InspiredToAction.com. Because doing something little is bigger than doing nothing at all.

2. Download the eBook Maximize Your Mornings. Resolve to get up 5 minutes earlier tomorrow morning so that you can start your day focusing on Him.

God has called you to this journey of motherhood. Give it all you have.

-Kat

(This post is part of WFMW.)

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Comments

32 Comments

  • Jamee says:

    OK, what about those of us who strive to be the perfect balanced mother? I want so desperately to appear to not care that there are dishes in my sink when you come over, that my children quite obviously dress themselves most mornings, that I start each day with a intentional quiet time that I am quite the bumbling hypocrite.

    I guess awareness can be a first step.

    Followed extremely closely by that minute of prayer.

    Thanks, friend!

  • Kat says:

    Jamee,
    Ha! I’m guilty of that too, but I have to believe that each morning I wake up and look to Him, a little more of my hypocrisy is washed away.

    Thanks for commenting.

    • I agree!! I’ve seen in other moms, and fallen victim myself, to the PRIDE of the sacrifice that we make. You know what I mean? “Oh I don’t have time for hair and make up… I’m too busy being a mom!” Baloney! I think we need to be careful to not become unbalanced in the other direction in our effort to become balanced! Ha! So, yes, Kat- We need to re-align ourselves every morning with the Truth!

  • Kristin says:

    I really agree with this, and Ive been really trying to focus on “sacrificing apperance for relTionship “. I read something recently that you may have seen, “rules + relationship= respect” and “rules – relationship= rebellion”. Great post, and love the new blog!

    • Kat says:

      “rules + relationship= respect” and “rules – relationship= rebellion”

      That’s good!

  • Grandma B. says:

    Nicely done, Kat.

  • Grandma B. says:

    Nicely done, Kat. luv you

  • Lisa H says:

    Well said. Praying for a change of heart tonight! 🙂
    .-= Lisa H´s last blog ..Free e-book =-.

  • Tracey says:

    Very well written! I often have to remind myself of your first point – that parenting is about relationships, not appearances. What God thinks about us is far more important than what others do.
    .-= Tracey´s last blog ..Her Sleep Shall Be Sweet =-.

  • Catherine B says:

    I was having this conversation with myself today in the car- being too hard on my kids b/c they after all were just “being kids” but seemed a bit unruly in my critical eyes. Balance is tough to achieve and is also very fluid…thanks for the article! I loved it.

    • Kat says:

      Catherine B,
      “being too hard on my kids b/c they after all were just “being kids” but seemed a bit unruly in my critical eyes”

      I so relate…

  • Kim says:

    So good, as always, Kat. I remember talking with my very godly mother about a similar topic recently and she told me, “We can either live in the fear of man or the fear of the Lord.” When I stand before Jesus one day, I want to be confident that I was diligent in training my precious children to be all that He has called them to be instead of being so concerned about the secondary things of life. I’m amazed at how much effort I put into those secondary things and how meaningless they truly are. Yes, I want my home to be sanitary and my kids outfits to match, but in the end, I know that is not what I’ll be thinking about.

  • i have downloading the ebook, utilized several of the worksheets & passed the link on to friends. thank you so much!! it is everything i have wanted to do, but not taken the time to put it all together. i am looking forward to all that you have in store.

    • Kat says:

      And I’m looking forward to having you be a part of it all! Thanks so much for your enthusiasm. I hope you’ll find this blog incredibly helpful.

  • Thankyou, I am so glad to be sharing this new start with you. (Jacqui)
    .-= hill upon hill´s last blog ..A Lesson. =-.

  • Bethany says:

    Oh, I so need to hear this!! I’m a first time mom to a now 7 month old and have been feeling really overwhelmed lately trying to figure out how to be that perfect mom all the while knowing that it’s only going to get harder and time goes on. I just downloaded the ebook and subscribed to the blog. Thanks so much!!!!

  • Mindy says:

    Wow! Thanks so much for your “inspiration” it helps to wipe away the fog I get caught up in every day, I realize after reading your words what I really want to achieve!

  • I really appreciated what you said about sacrificing appearance for relationship. That is so important. I know when we’re expecting guests, it’s easy to get in a tizzy and start fussing at everyone. But what’s really more important – impressing someone who’d going to visit our home for a few hours or showing love to the people who will still be here after the guests leave?
    .-= solstice letters´s last blog ..be a camera =-.

    • Kat says:

      Solstice Letters,
      “But what’s really more important – impressing someone who’d going to visit our home for a few hours or showing love to the people who will still be here after the guests leave?”

      Very well said!

  • Jessica says:

    I’ve been following your blog for a couple months now and have been so encouraged by so many things you have posted but today’s post was an answer to prayer. I was just praying this afternoon “Lord I believe I have become to authoritarian to my 3 year old son and am being to critical because the respect is not there and it seems like he is disobeying me for everything and yet I am constantly correcting him, so show me what to do and how to turn that around.” Like many have said finding that balance is so hard because I really do what to get to the heart with him and I want him to be who God has called him to be but I feel so ill equipped for the job I have been called to do, but your post is the start that I needed. Thanks again for your encouragement!

  • tacy says:

    LOVE this! 🙂

  • Harmony says:

    Thanks for the reminder! I definitely struggle with this but my mornings with God sure do make my expectations of myself less like those around me and more like Him.

    • Kat says:

      You’re welcome Harmony! Great point. Letting God speak His expectations before anyone else is one of the best things about taking the time to listen to Him each morning.

  • AMEN!! that’s all… 🙂

    Inspiring as always!

  • Amy Thornton says:

    Thank you so much for posting this! That battle between perfection and balance is hard-fought every day in my home (and in my head, quite frankly). Thanks for putting the proper perspective on this issue. And for giving me permission to seek balance not perfection!