Rarely have I encountered someone with the humble determination September McCarthy shows in her journey of motherhood. As she follows the Lord’s call to equip her own children to build His kingdom, she gently shares her hard-learned lessons and hard-earned wisdom. September understands the challenges of nurturing our children as Christ-followers, and her insights have been a breath of fresh air in my own moments of frustration and surrender. Her heart beats for God, the women He has called to be mothers, and for the children we laugh, cry, and pray over. It’s a pleasure to welcome her to the farm’s front porch today…
They sat on the sofa watching me with disbelief as I wrapped their hands together with a sock.
Honestly, it was all I could find, and it was conveniently stuffed in the couch cushions.
It seemed appropriate at the time.
I think any onlooker would have thought that I had lost my mind. A desperate parent will pull no stops when we are over-the-edge tired of hearing our children quarrel.
There they sat inching their bodies as far away from one another as the stretch in the sock would allow.
I was so tired I had to turn my back to the kids as my stern look of anger gave way to a smile.
Maybe in some psychology book there is a term to describe what I was doing. I’m not sure. But it was my last resort to make a point.
And it did.
We had a long talk while their hands were tied together.
Their angry eyes began to soften and the slight curl of a smile emerged at the edges of their lips. Always a good sign.
If peace had to come like this, then I was willing to try it. After all, the Bible says, “Blessed are the peacemakers: for they will be called children of God” (Matthew 5:9 NIV). And if parents aren’t peacemakers, I don’t know what we are!
Did my children argue, squabble, or have conflict after this? Of course they did.
The sock incident only changed the direction of that morning; it didn’t change their hearts.
And so, over the years, I realized that my children need to understand and learn one big lesson:
Love begins in the home. If you cannot love your family well, then how will you love others?
The thing is, our children cannot love if they don’t understand what love looks like in a day, in the middle of a conflict, or when they do not care for the actions of their siblings.
Motherhood has so many intentional moments, but pulling the root of selfishness up and out in your home is one of the hardest, most painful jobs there is. It takes work that will require plenty of sweat and tears from you.
Your heart will ache as you see your children’s different personalities clash and the conflict that ensues when they cannot put their own agendas aside.
Love cannot reside where selfishness is rooted. It’s our job to teach them every day how to put on patience, kindness, and self-control.
It’s easy to lose sight of the ship when the fog rolls in.
I remind myself of this when life overtakes me and I cannot figure out how I found myself trying to diffuse sibling rivalry or handle a conflict that festered with my teenager way too long.
If someone could just help me navigate through this muddy time, I think, it would all go away. But conflict can be just under the surface and will pull us under if we don’t learn how to navigate through it.
All relationships take work and time. We have applied these very basic and biblical rules to the communication in our home, and they have helped us walk through some serious issues and discussions that would have been much easier to avoid and let fester…
Our Four Family Rules to Better Communication:
- Be honest
- Keep current—don’t focus on the past
- Attack the problem, not the person
- Act—don’t react
Like it or not, we are the models for godly or good behavior in our homes.
Our family and those who know us are our audience.We often overlook the influence of our own tongue in the home.
Our words influence the steps of resolution we take or don’t take to work through a conflict.
It is possible to have a home that permeates peace.
Mothers, imagine the power over the nations, the generations, if you are willing to model and speak peace into the very fiber of your home and your children. It will be life changing.
Mothers have the power to shift and stabilize the atmosphere of their families and can turn a day right side up or upside down.
Women can ignite happiness, spark anger, diffuse arguments, and lift the fog of discouragement in any atmosphere.
Mothers are mood makers, and it is our job to set the tone in the lives of those we are given to steward.
It may seem daunting, but it is truly a gift.
Don’t feel as if it’s a huge weight of responsibility or something you are required to do.
Your home will become who you are, and your family will shine forth this atmosphere wherever they go.
Love stands tall.
Love will always trump conflict.
September McCarthy believes every woman needs someone to speak into her life with understanding and truth. She encourages women in each season of motherhood through her blog One September Day and her ministry Raising Generations Today. As a speaker and writer, her vision and mission is for the generations. September lives in rural Upstate New York with her husband and their large family.
Do you ever wonder if your efforts as a mom make any difference? Take heart. Whether you’re struggling through sleepless nights with your toddler or endless battles with your teen, September McCarthy’s story offers practical insights and powerful inspiration to encourage you on your own mothering journey. In Why Motherhood Matters you’ll find sweet anecdotes and gentle guidance for those moments you need both a breather and a lifeline. These pages are like a breathing coach. And each page is a delivery—into more and more of the grace and heart of your Father. Motherhood matters—because what matters like sculpting souls with your Father? Motherhood is an incredible labor of love—and in the scope of eternity, it matters more than you know.
[ Our humble thanks to Harvest House for their partnership in today’s devotion ]