It is easy to become distracted by the constant demands of motherhood, but we must not lose sight of this fact: Our children are only young for a very brief time.
When my girls were little, it wasn’t always easy for me to wake up for those 2:00 a.m. feedings. Loneliness sometimes crept in when I missed an activity in order to put them to bed on time. I was eager to get them potty-trained and be done with the dirty diaper routine. Some days it felt as if that season would never end.
But frequently on trips to the grocery store a grandmother would stop to admire my little ones and leave me with this admonition: “Honey, enjoy them now because they grow up so quickly.”
How right those women were!
I was keenly aware of the fleetingness of childhood when my son Chad was born. At the time of his birth, Nicole was sixteen, Kristin was fifteen, and Janelle was eleven. By now experience had taught me to treasure each moment, for I knew he wouldn’t stay small very long.
The challenges of mothering seemed altogether insignificant this time around. Middle-of-the-night feedings weren’t drudgery. I hardly gave a moment’s thought to missing an activity. I certainly wasn’t in a hurry to potty-train my son. In fact, much to the chagrin of my three daughters, I did not tend to that task until he was almost four years old. (By that time, it only took one day to train him!).
Moms, you may be up to your earlobes with babies and dirty diapers. Or you may be spending half your life in the car, driving your children to and from numerous activities. In whatever stage of motherhood you find yourself, may I remind you of something? It won’t last for very long.
In Psalm 90 Moses depicted the reality of the brevity of life. He compared our lives to a watch in the night, a dream, grass that flourishes and then fades—all brief and fleeting images. Then he prayed this way: “So teach us to number our days” (v. 12).
Have you numbered your days lately? If we pause to count the remaining days we have with our children, we will realize how few there are. This awareness will help us to love our children today, to joyfully sacrifice for them today, to thank God for the gift of being their mom today.
—adapted from Feminine Appeal