Last Updated on March 11, 2024

I stood there amazed. My one-year-old wailed wordlessly in his highchair, clearly incensed at my inability to interpret whatever he wanted. He was steamed. And you call yourself a mother!

But after an afternoon of his irritability … following a morning of his irritability (thank you, Lord, for naptime), which followed at least two weeks of his irritability, I was exhausted and more than frazzled with trying to communicate with an implacable near-toddler.

I had blamed it on teeth, tummy issues, personality type, a possible earache, lack of sleep (his, then mine), and a sinful nature (his, then mine). I was running out of explanations for him and certainly out of patience. I felt frustration up to here, pulling-out-my-hair powerlessness. And it certainly wasn’t the first time.

I have now been a mom for six years (almost seven, counting the bun-in-the-oven timeframe). I have four kids to show for this, all with different personalities, who are walking around like fairly satisfied, well-adjusted children. Prior to this era, I even gained a college degree, and once, I did our taxes all by myself (which BTW, made me feel like that college degree must have been overrated).

I have held a steady job. I operate a slammin’ minivan on a regular basis. But I am still, at times, astounded by the moments of motherhood when I just don’t know what to do.

Sibling rivalry, too, has been known to bring me to my wit’s end. When children pick at each other endlessly and run to me with pointing fingers over the injustice of it all, there are times when “I have had it!” and prayer seem my only remaining coping mechanisms.

And really, prayer was/is my saving grace.

How many times has motherhood evoked the one-word “help!” prayer?!

God’s promised that He can make His power perfect in my weakness.

And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.

– 2 Corinthians 12:9-10

And He’ll give me wisdom generously when I ask for it, as long as I believe Him.

This is a very good thing because there are few times in my life when I’ve felt more weak, more exasperated, and more needy than as a clueless mom. Guess my youngest isn’t the only one driven to anguish and muddled pleas.


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