Are You a Fool as a Mother?

Don’t be offended; It’s the question I’m asking myself:

Are you a FOOL as a mother?

Are You A FOOL As a Mother? // jessconnell.com

What would that even look like? What does it mean to be a fool?

Last month I sat in a homeschool conference on the 2nd row of a session by Tedd Tripp. (Can I just eeeeeeeeeek! about that for a minute?)

His topic was distinguishing wisdom and foolishness in the Proverbs. First, he told us “foolishness does not equal childishness. There are things your child will do that are simply because of immaturity and development. That is your child being a child.” (Helpful reminder for mamas parenting little ones!)

Instead, he boiled the whole idea of foolishness down to one statement:

The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God.’ ~Psalms 14:1

So are you that kind of mother?

You might be thinking, “phew! Nope. I’m definitely good there. I teach my kids about God. They know for certain we believe in God. I’m not a fool as a mother.”

Wait, wait, wait… it’s not that simple!

Next he defined wisdom according to another proverb:

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom.” ~Proverbs 9:10

Maybe you’re a little annoyed now, thinking, “OK, Jess, now I’ve got the whole definition. Fool= “no God.” Wisdom= fear of the LORD. Pretty sure I’m in the clear.”

But here’s the thing. It is NOT ABOUT WHAT YOU DO. It’s not what you say to your child, others, or yourself about what you believe.

It is about how you LIVE.

Truly. In the secret places of your heart.

  • When your child has a medical injury, are you immediately panicked? Riddled with anxiety? AS IF THERE IS NO GOD?
  • When your son or daughter encounters perilous ideas contrary to what you’ve taught them, are you scared? AS IF GOD DOES NOT LOVE THEM AND WANT TO PROTECT THEIR HEART MORE THAN YOU DO?
  • Who or what is it that you’re really FEARING in those moments of danger or despair?
  • What is it that your heart is saying you really believe to be true?

Are you believing:

When you look at how you live, is it clear that you are believing these things? Are you living in light of the fear of the Lord?

Or if you look honestly at your actions and reactions, are you believing that it is all on you?

Are you:

  • stressed about their physical safety as if an injury or risk is beyond the reach of God and thus must be controlled by you?
  • parenting as if their goodness and salvation is wholly on your shoulders?
  • worried and unable to function healthily and normally because of your child’s sin?
  • perpetually fearful that your child will come to some harm? (I am not talking about wise prudence about truly risky things; I am talking about an ongoing, fixated fear that controls you.)
  • believing that you love your child more than your Heavenly Father does, and thus feel that YOU are the one ultimately protecting and shielding your child from anything and everything harmful?
  • anxious about their present choices and their future path?

WHICH IS TRUE ABOUT YOU, MAMA?

  • Are you living in fear of other things or in fear of the LORD?
  • Are you trying to control everything yourself or trusting God as the “blessed Controller of all things?”
  • Are you parenting as if it’s all on your shoulders, or continually mindful of your need for God’s grace and sovereign intervention?
  • Are you churning with anxieties, or resting in God’s goodness?
  • Are you stuck in an endless, pointless search for self-confidence, or living with God-confidence?

Are you a fool as a mother, or are your children fully in the LORD’s hands?

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Jess Connell

Jesus-follower, Happy wife, Mom of 8 neat people. Former world-traveler, now settled in Washington. Host of Mom On Purpose podcast (momonpurpose.com). I write and wrangle kids.

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6 Responses

  1. Laura says:

    I love this post. Such great food for thought.

  2. Kathryn says:

    Hi Jess,

    I enjoyed reading your post. I sometimes think I musn’t care enough, but perhaps it’s possible I’ve been trusting God (hard to see myself that way), but somehow your post was comforting. I have an 18 year old daughter who ran away from home over a year ago. She is on my mind so often, but it seems this becomes conversation, (or pleading), with God more often. I had some nights of extreme grieving with uncontrollable sobbing, but I think this is possibly normal with grief. My 16 year old son blesses us with the way his heart seems to remain with us, but he just got stuck into a renovation job and broke apart a heap of wall lining full of deadly aspestos (aaahhhh), and I was so encouraged by the words in your post: and no one will die before their appointed time.
    Love from Kathryn.

    • Jess Connell says:

      I’m glad it was timely for you!

      It’s such a temptation for us as moms… because we start out (like me with Luke right now) basically “controlling” everything about them. We control how often they eat, sleep, play, what clothes they wear, which sorts of food they eat, who they can play with, where they go… I think as moms, we are uniquely (and so easily) tempted to believe that we can keep controlling everything.

      It’s good for us to get our heads out of that wrong thinking (I’m speaking to me too!) and realize that it’s not up to us to control everything. Like your example of asbestos, there is so much in life that we can’t control and we will go crazy if we think we can.

  3. Kami Crawford says:

    Hi Jess, you have done a good job spelling out the different ways having a foolish heart looks like and the different ways having a heart of godly wisdom looks like. I was especially convicted by the second foolish belief that is: parenting as if their goodness and salvation is wholly on your shoulders.

    I want to grow in wisdom as a mother and its cool to see which areas that I need to grow more in, which is probably all of them but some more than others.

    Our thoughts and actions can have a litmus test of: “is this thought or action saying I believe in God or I don’t believe in God. And if I’m not believing in God than what am I believing?”

  1. May 29, 2015

    […] then I am operating as if I am God, and the way the day goes is up to me. (We talked about that recently, remember? That’s being a FOOL.) […]

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