Don’t ever try to talk to my mom while she is on the telephone. She firmly believes in doing one thing at a time and doing it well. I, on the other hand, have mastered the art of doing three things at once — all poorly. Mom, she drinks her coffee black. Me, I add more sugar than is put in your average cotton candy. My mom is graceful, poised, and calm. I’m expressive, sporadic, clumsy, and (according to my sisters) a little crazy. When Mom talks, everyone listens. I talk so much that people often tune me out like elevator music. Mom’s favorite meal is roast beef, green beans, mashed potatoes with gravy, and strawberry shortcake. She’s a southern gal. But give me a plate of sushi with extra wasabi and a cup of hot green tea. I’m a suburban girl.

I’m sure we’re related; people sometimes say we look alike. I know I will never be as pretty as she is, but I tell them, "If only I could be godly like her, then I’d be happy."

With all our differences, I didn’t always understand my mom. I suspect she didn’t always know what to make of me either. Really, it’s a miracle we’re such good friends today.

Maybe you can relate. Maybe you and your mother are as different as, well, roast beef and sushi. Maybe you have no common interests or style of communication; so you just don’t talk much. Or maybe your differences go deeper than silly preferences. So when you do try to talk, conflict inevitably flares up. You’ve allowed real disagreements to wedge between you, and they are slowly but steadily pushing you apart.

Perhaps a little question occasionally rings the doorbell of your mind: "How did you end up being related to her?" The answer: God set it up that way.

God Doesn't Make Mistakes

He has created your mother-daughter relationship. He doesn’t just put mothers and daughters together like a guy in a deli slapping meat and cheese on bread. God has placed us in the exact mother-daughter relationship that He desires. Psalm 139 informs us of this: "In your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there were none of them" (v. 16).

Now we don’t usually apply this verse to the family God has arranged for us. But think about it — if all your days were ordained, including the day you were born, then whom you were born to (or, moms, who was born to you) is no accident.

This fact is confirmed in Acts 17:26 (NIV): "From one man he made every nation of men . . . and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live."

God doesn’t make mistakes. As my sister Janelle likes to quip, "There wasn’t a mix-up in the children’s department in heaven. An angel did not inform the Lord, ‘Ah, Lord, we messed up, and Nicole, she was supposed to be a part of the Smith family, but she accidentally got put in the Mahaney family.’" Not so!

The exact family we were placed in — the exact mother and the exact daughter we have received — were prearranged by God before the first day of creation. And if you are adopted or have a stepmother, God was equally sovereign in His choice for you. He specially selected the woman who is now your mother with precise detail and matchless love.

Not only has He made these selections, but God in His love granted us unique abilities, gifts, talents, and strengths that benefit each other. Moms, your daughters are a heritage, a reward from God (Ps. 127:3). They are not a bother, a burden, or a problem — but a reward! Your daughter (and not so and so’s daughter) is the perfect girl for you. And, daughter, this works two ways: Your mother is also the perfect mom for you. I don’t mean that she is perfect. None of us is. Only God is perfect. But because He doesn’t make mistakes, I can confidently assert that your mom’s the right mom for you. Whether you realize it or not, God has given you a good gift.

But What If Things Have Gone Terribly Wrong...