When you fail, it feels awful. When you feel like a failure as a mom, it can be debilitating. Find out how to handle failure as a mom and why it isn’t bad.
DON’T HAVE TIME? PIN IT FOR LATER!
It’s been another rough day.
One strong-willed child and one hot-tempered mama do not mix well, do they?
At the end of the day, you just add this to the long list of bad mom days. It’s just another day of feeling like you’ve failed as a mom – feeling like a failure in general.
Sister, I understand exactly how you feel.
I hate to fail. There are only a few things I have failed at in my life. Let’s be clear though. I’m pretty average at most things and downright awful at others – singing, housekeeping, guessing the winning lotto numbers to name a few.
Every time I struggle, I generally quit because that’s way better than failing. At least then, I have control of the situation.
But you can’t do that as a mom, can you?
The truth is: My greatest failure is in my lack of failing.
And why is it that I don’t often fail? Because I don’t trust. I don’t trust my own abilities. I don’t trust God’s ability to see me through it. I’ve got too much pride to tell people I failed. It’s so much easier not to try. It hurts so much less.
But does it really?
Failing develops persistence and resilience when facing difficulties in life. And isn’t that what we really need? Isn’t that what our kids need too?
And what do you do when you feel like you’re failing (in epic fashion) at being a mom to a strong-willed kid?
GET THE STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE for how to pray using the lord’s prayer
What’s So Biblical About Failure?
No one enjoys failing. I’ve never met anyone who does.
But I do know many people who have the courage to stand tall in the face of adversity. Unafraid of failing. Willing to take chances. Assessing the risk and recognizing the benefits are worth it. They have such faith!
In Hebrews 11:1, faith is “confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”
So what does this mean for those of us who don’t have faith enough to risk failing?
The apostle Paul discusses those of weak and strong mind in his letter to the Romans, specifically talking about what types of food people should eat. It is not about food though. It is about our faith and personal convictions. Doing things when you have doubts about whether or not to do them.
Romans 14:23 says “But whoever doubts is condemned if they eat, because their eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin.”
When it comes to adversity, having fear of failure and making the decision not to risk is a lack of faith. Fear of failure does not come from faith.
Since everything that does not come from faith is sin, fear of failure is a sin. Whoa.
What’s So Great About Failure?
I know what you’re thinking because I think that way too. “Sure, Ana. Try to guilt me into not being fearful. That makes a whole lot of sense!”
That’s not my goal. EVER. My intention for pointing this out is simply to redirect our thoughts to the One who can help us with our unbelief.
In times of trouble, remember what 2 Corinthians 4:10 says. “We always carry the death of Jesus in our body, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.” After all, upon accepting Jesus Christ as our savior, the Holy Spirit indwells us.
Thinking about that puts 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 in a new perspective:
… Therefore I will boast all the more gladly in my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
When we are weak in our own power, then we are strong in the grace of Jesus. When we are weak, we go to Jesus and receive His strength and power. The same power that raised Him from the dead.
The same supernatural power that indwells us!
Embracing adversity brings us to a point of weakness. But it’s when we reach the end of ourselves that we’re able to bring God glory and access the supernatural power we received in Christ.
When does this happen more frequently than parenting our kiddos when they’re strong-willed?
GET THE STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE for how to pray using the lord’s prayer
What Do We Do When Faced With Adversity?
As you approach your next obstacle, remember God has not given us a “spirit of fear but of power and love and self-control.” (2 Timothy 1:7) When we abide in God’s word, we bear the fruit of His word. Among that fruit (Galatians 5:22 – 23) is love and self-control.
Even when you fail (notice I said ‘when’ and not ‘if’), we know God is always working for the good of those who love Him (Romans 8:28).
Failure shouldn’t be seen as punishment.
Sometimes our failures come from pruning. Have you ever shaken your fists in the air when things don’t go your way and ask God, “Why? What have I done to deserve this? Why won’t you fix this?”
In his gentle, loving way, he simply says “I AM.”
Jesus said in John 15:1
“I am the vine and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be more fruitful…If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit.”
That fruit we see in Galatians is the fruit of the Spirit. Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. We’re given power (the same power through the Holy Spirit that raised Jesus from the grave) and love and self-control (both fruit of the Spirit).
When faced with adversity, recognize we can do all things through Christ, who gives us strength. (Philippians 4:13) We don’t need to be afraid because the LORD our God is with us and will never leave us.
We need to remain in Him.
So, practically speaking, what can we do?
Philippians 4:6 – 7 says “Do not be anxious about anything but in every situation, through prayer, petition with thanksgiving, bring your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Don’t miss that. We are to bring every situation to God, with thanksgiving.
It continues on in verses 8 and 9 to instruct us in what to do next.
“Finally, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me or seen in me – put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.”
When we abide, we’ll have the peace of God. One way is to arm yourself with these 5 scriptures you need to remember when you fail.
How Do We Take Comfort In Our Failures?
As my husband says, “There is no win or lose. There is only win or learn.”
God is anxious to have another Warrior Princess and you are just the gal. He will rescue you and uphold you with his hand (Psalm 37:23 – 24) when you fall (Psalm 37:33, Psalm 145:14).
If God is for you, then who can possibly be against you? (Romans 8:31)
Don’t give up on parenting that strong-willed kiddo of yours. When you fail (and you will), He’ll set your feet on a rock so you can stand firmly on the ground (Psalm 40:2-3).
So fail away. You know He’s got you.