My wife Angela and I were reviewing my blog several nights ago. We realized that the most commonly read post is one called “Christian Moms: Pursue Career or Stay at Home.” With so many comments and questions, Angela felt led to lend her own voice to the subject. In her first guest post on legacyblog, she describes her own journey as a Christian women who is a wife, mother, and professional. Here is Angela on motherhood, career, and the choice to stay at home.
I am a woman who has chosen to give up my career for a season to stay at home for my three daughters and husband. Who am I? My identity is that I am a loving, compassionate, gifted, intelligent, educated, woman created by God my Father. I am who I am because of Him. My gifts and talents are from Him and for Him.
You see, I am a wife, a mother, a daughter, a friend, an accountant, and many other things. But, my identity is not in these things because at any moment these things can be taken away from me. I must know who I am, not by my relationships or associations or gifting and talents, but in my Creator. If I find my identity as a wife, mother, or accountant, I will fail because I am not, nor will ever be, perfect at any of these things.
As Christian women we need to support each other and realize we are all on the same team. Women are so important, powerful, loving, compassionate, intelligent, wise, and gifted. I am so blessed to have the choice to pursue a career or stay at home or both. I am so blessed to have women and mothers in my life that are and were my doctors, teachers, storeowners, nurses, and more. I am grateful for them and their gifts and choices.
I must say this. Whatever you feel convinced by the Holy Spirit of in your life and family, we as mothers must do some things. First, we must support each other, encourage each other, and pray for each other. We all love our children and want what is best.
We also must pursue our children more than anyone or anything else pursues them. We as mothers, no matter if we work or stay at home, have one of the most powerful influences over our children. We influence them no matter what, even if we intend to or not. We must succeed at our love pursuit of them or someone or something else will. We must make choices to spend time with our children when and however we can. Pursue them with love, time, and encouragement. Money and gifts are great but not the answer. Love and time and words of encouragement can not be substituted.
I know mothers who work for many reasons: to make ends meet, to send kids to a better school, or because they are gifted in a certain capacity. Whatever the reason, it is a choice and not unbiblical according to the example of women in Proverbs 31. The choice of a mother to work or stay home is between her and her husband if married, and God and it is not the right of others to judge. It is our job as Christian women to support and encourage each other. No more sideways energy about who is right; the stay at home mom or the working mom. We are on the same team.
To single mothers who do not have a choice about working or staying at home: You are heroes, especially to the children for which you put food on the table, clothes on their back, and offer the exhausted compassion of mom.
I love my choice to stay home. I have times and days that I miss my career. I loved working and receiving rewards and kudos and using my education and talents in that capacity. However, I made a choice for me and for my family. I am thankful that I was able to have that choice. I have three daughters whom we are raising to discover who they are in Christ and how they are gifted and talented. I am committed to encouraging their gifts and talents. I am also committed to pursuing them with my love, time, and encouragement. I tell them that they can do and be whatever they feel led by God to do and they they get to discover that plan. That could be anything: President of the United States, doctor, teacher, or stay at home mom. Mothers, thanks for all you do. I am excited to invest in the next generation alongside all of you women and mothers.