How to Be a Better Mom

By Eryn Lynum
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on print
Share on email
Liderina/iStock/Thinkstock
God can use us as moms, even when we don’t do everything exactly right, to positively shape our children.

“You need to stop coming out of your room!” I said. “Go back to bed, right now!” My eyes narrowed as I stared at my son, awaiting a response. He looked down at the floor. I continued, “It’s bedtime. You are being disobedient!” I recited the script we replayed nearly every evening. I knew my tone was too harsh, but I felt incapable of bridling it.

Tears fell down his cheeks. He looked up from the floor and into my eyes and said: “You yelled at me like you didn’t like me.” Never had I felt such deep, aching shame as a mom.

How can I be a better mom to these children God has entrusted to my husband and me? I thought. That is the question that presses in on me when I feel like I’m failing as a mom. I want to do better, but how?

First steps to better

As I’ve allowed God to transform me, I’ve discovered two ways moms can utilize Christ’s strength in their everyday lives.

Be prepared

Decide ahead of time how you will respond to a situation that could get out of hand. When my children argue, they have come to expect my consistent response: “We are a team, and this is not how a team works best. Please go together to your room until you resolve this. You can come back out when you find a solution.”

Choose soft words

Proverbs 15:1 says, “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” As parents, we hold the power to diffuse anger. We can either heighten a situation with our own angry response or calm it with a gentle tone.

That evening when I spoke harshly to my son, the interaction caused me to make an intentional shift in our relationship. I have thought about it when I’m tempted to lose my patience again. And I’ve found myself more able to remain calm and respond in a controlled manner. God used my failure to refine me. I want my children to witness me becoming a better mom, as God brings His strength into my weaknesses.

Don't wait to apologize

That evening, with my son’s heart bruised and my own clouded with shame, I welcomed him into my arms. Rubbing his back, I whispered, “I’m so sorry. The way I spoke to you was wrong. I should not have become so angry.” I pulled back to look into his eyes. “When we mess up, Jesus forgives us and makes us stronger.”

As soon as angry words leave my lips now, I say a quick prayer asking God to humble me. I apologize, and then pray with my child. As I pray out loud, I ask God to help me control my anger and thank Him for His grace and forgiveness.

I assure my children often that “God is working on Mom’s heart too.” Then I am age-appropriately open with them about my own struggles, and I remind them that God’s grace is sufficient, and His power is perfected in weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9).

Accepting I’m not perfect

When my children see that it’s OK not to be perfect, and that Jesus meets me in my weakness, they come to understand God’s love and power in a whole new way. They see that it’s Jesus who transforms all people’s hearts and makes us better, even moms.

Someday when my son is grown, I pray he will look back on that evening when Mom lost her cool and realize that God’s grace was there. I want him to notice how God has continually transformed my heart, so that he understands that God has the power to transform his heart, too.

In a world where pressures to be a perfect mother abound, I can find freedom in proclaiming that only Christ can make me a better mom. And, as I depend on Him, He will be faithful to do just that. Second Peter 1:3 says, “His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness.” Everything for life and godliness — motherhood not excluded. Over time, I learned that it’s good for my children to grow up watching me depend on Jesus for all my needs. Through each struggle, as I have learned to place my successes and faults as a parent before God, I have become a better mom.

Copyright © 2019 by Eryn Lynum

Copyright © 2019 by Eryn Lynum

Share:
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on print
Share on email

About the Author

Eryn Lynum

Eryn Lynum is a public speaker and author of the book 936 Pennies: Discovering the Joy of Intentional Parenting. She has been featured on FamilyLife Today, Proverbs 31 Ministries, MOPS International, and more. Eryn resides in northern Colorado with her husband and four children, where they enjoy spending time hiking, camping, and exploring the Rocky Mountains. Learn more about Eryn …

You May Also Like

Thank you [field id="first_name"] for signing up to get the free downloads of the Marrying Well Guides. 

Click the image below to access your guide and learn about the counter-cultural, biblical concepts of intentionality, purity, community and Christian compatibility.

(For best results use IE 8 or higher, Firefox, Chrome or Safari)

To stay up-to-date with the latest from Boundless, sign up for our free weekly e-newsletter.


If you have any comments or questions about the information included in the Guide, please send them to [email protected]

Click here to return to Boundless

Focus on the Family

Thank you for submitting this form. You will hear from us soon. 

The Daily Citizen

The Daily Citizen from Focus on the Family exists to be your most trustworthy news source. Our team of analysts is devoted to giving you timely and relevant analysis of current events and cultural trends – all from a biblical worldview – so that you can be inspired and assured that the information you share with others comes from a reliable source.

Alive to Thrive is a biblical guide to preventing teen suicide. Anyone who interacts with teens can learn how to help prevent suicidal thinking through sound practical and clinical advice, and more importantly, biblical principles that will provide a young person with hope in Christ.

Bring Your Bible to School Day Logo Lockup with the Words Beneath

Every year on Bring Your Bible to School Day, students across the nation celebrate religious freedom and share God’s love with their friends. This event is designed to empower students to express their belief in the truth of God’s Word–and to do so in a respectful way that demonstrates the love of Christ.

Focus on the Family’s® Foster Care and Adoption program focuses on two main areas:

  • Wait No More events, which educate and empower families to help waiting kids in foster care

  • Post-placement resources for foster and adoptive families

Christian Counselors Network

Find Christian Counselors, Marriage & Family Therapists, Psychologists, Social Workers and Psychiatrists near you! Search by location, name or specialty to find professionals in Focus on the Family’s Christian Counselors Network who are eager to assist you.

Boundless is a Focus on the Family community for Christian young adults who want to pursue faith, relationships and adulthood with confidence and joy.

Through reviews, articles and discussions, Plugged In exists to shine a light on the world of popular entertainment while giving you and your family the essential tools you need to understand, navigate and impact the culture in which we live.

Have you been looking for a way to build your child’s faith in a fun and exciting way?
Adventures in Odyssey® audio dramas will do just that. Through original audio stories brought to life by actors who make you feel like part of the experience; these fictional, character-building dramas use storytelling to teach lasting truths.

Focus on the Family’s Hope Restored all-inclusive intensives offer marriage counseling for couples who are facing an extreme crisis in their marriage, and who may even feel they are headed for divorce.