Are We Bad Moms? Truth For The Weary Mom’s Heart

Grace, Growth, and Gifting

I had a classic “bad mom” morning. I woke up late and placed the pressure on the kids. “Get dressed. NOW!” “Eat breakfast. HURRY!” “Let’s go, let’s go! Now, Now!” Result? Tearful and pouty kids. No wonder.

“You’re a mean mommy,” My oldest said as he held his head down during the long elevator decent to the first floor of our apartment building.

Yep. That about summed it up.

Are We Bad Moms?

photo thanks to unsplash

But are we bad moms?

The Bad Mom movie premiered this year. Although it contained some highly inappropriate moments, it showed the truth that all us moms care—even when we constantly feel on some level that we are “bad moms.”

We care so much we Pinterest and Google ’till our eyes dry out. We read “how to” articles and plan birthdays that rival a day at Disneyland.

We look at other moms: the crafty mom, brainy mom, soccer mom, working mom, healthy mom, stay-at-home mom, super-spiritual mom, and think—I can do it all, just like them!

Or we sit behind a judge’s mallet:

  • Said a snippy word to my kid. Bam!
  • Fed them processed food. Bam!
  • Didn’t read to them for at least 15 minutes. Bam!
  • Didn’t practice memorizing a Bible verse. Bam!

What does God’s Word say?

1) Grace.

Honestly, on a spiritual level, we are all “bad” moms. We all need Jesus. The Gospel, the good news of Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection, frees us from the weight of our shortcomings.

“There is no condemnation from those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of liberty has set us free from the law of sin and death.” – Romans 8:1

2) Growth.

Living out grace in our lives is a process of growth. When we abide in the vine of Jesus Christ through renewing our minds with the truth, communing with Him in prayer, and yielding to the Spirit, grace transforms the dark colors of greys in our homes to the vibrant life of yellows and blues.

The process reminds me of the classic movies originally mastered in black and white.

The more we listen to the truth and apply it to motherhood, the more our parenting is remastered to full color.

“A gentle answer turns away wrath, a harsh word stirs up anger.”

– Proverbs 15:1

Just yesterday (at this writing), instead of throwing black words when my sons hit each other in anger, I breathed, and responded in cooling blues, “Uh Oh! You boys hurt each other and now we take a break in our beds to think about your wrong choices. It’s not okay to hit.”

They screamed back in black. I continued to coat them in blue—over and over and over (hard practice of self-control)—until the color of their hearts cooled too.

3) Gifting.

Hooray for the crafty mom!

Cheers to the sporty mom!

Clap to the brainy mom!

No mom is the same. God made us unique. We simply need to learn to dip into our abilities from God and serve our family well in those areas—while not comparing to other mama’s strengths.

What does it look like?

 What paints your heart with joy? What do you day dream about? I know a mommy friend whose heart is painted with joy as she sews. So, she makes handicrafts for others and her kiddos. We all benefit. Another mom I know is a research scientist. She shares her passion for observation and experiments with her kids. They have a blast exploring the world together. I enjoy creativity, so I make up songs and crafts to share with my kids. What do you enjoy? Share that with your kids in only the way you can.

What Paint's Your Heart With Joy?

photo thanks to unsplash

The Necessary

Of course we still serve our family in things we struggle in because, let’s be honest, we all need to eat, live, and grow—and our families depend on mama for lots of it.

And in those necessary things, we find God’s strength at work within us to serve in our weaknesses.

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

– 2 Corinthians 12:9

I will never be known as a gourmet cook, but I think my kids will remember all the silly songs I create to teach them important life lessons—and they don’t starve.

“As stewards of the magnifold grace of God, each of you should use whatever gift he has received to serve one another” (1 Peter 4:10).


I’m a bad mom.


God’s grace is abundant and

I have unique strengths to offer my kids.

Question:Do you ever feel like a bad mom? What helps you move forward? To leave a comment, just click here.

PRAY: Lord, I desire to be a good mom. One that honors you and is a blessing to my family. Help me to be who You created me to be and not compare myself to other moms. Please help me to honor you with my attitude and my actions towards those in my care. In Jesus’ name, AMEN.

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  • We dads tell ourselves the same things from our perspective. Oh man, do we EVER. Thanks for the reminders that grace is the context in which we parent.

    • Thanks for sharing, Wayne. I always thought it was more of a mom thing. Your insight is helpful.