Developing Wisdom as Christian Mothers
- Rebecca Barlow Jordan
- 2011 6 May
“If any of you lack wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all…and it will be given to you…But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt…” James 1:5-6 TNIV
Two new mothers came to King Solomon’s court, pleading for an answer to their dilemma. Soon after birth, one of their babies died during the night, probably from suffocation. That baby’s mother crept into the other woman’s room and took her living infant, leaving the still body of her own child in the other woman’s bed. When the mother woke up, she discovered her baby had been switched, and the dead child left in its place.
She found the mom who made the switch, and a verbal fight followed, ending up with a visit to the king for his decision. The guilty mom would not own up to the truth (1 Kings 3:16-23).
God had given King Solomon a choice when he first took the throne: he could ask God for anything he wanted, and God would grant it. But rather than offering selfish requests, Solomon asked for wisdom. God gave him that and so much more. The women’s arguments would test that gift of wisdom (1 Kings 3:4-14).
King Solomon listened to the women’s accusations, then made his decision: “Cut the living child in two and give half to one and half to the other” (1 Kings 3:24). Wise king!
Sure enough, the real mother was horrified and offered to give up the baby rather than see him die. The guilty mom could care less. Her heartless response may seem unbelievable to us: “Neither I nor you shall have him. Cut him in two!” (1 Kings 3:26).
Solomon knew the real mother would speak up, so he promptly awarded the baby to its mother.
Some of you may feel like your child must have been switched at birth, especially when they challenge your authority or decisions. Every mother needs a healthy dose of wisdom when it comes time to answer the inevitable questions: How long should you breastfeed your baby? Will you allow one, two, or multiple body piercing (the ears being only one of the choices)? Can they date at sixteen or twenty-five? Will you follow them on their dates, or just hire a private investigator? Will you send them to their rooms or take away their driver’s license? Will you let them live at home free or make them pay rent?
Moms could ask God for many things: a compliant, obedient child, one who hates sports (to save money on hospital bills), maybe even a valedictorian (to insure a paid college scholarship). And you might just give birth to one of those.
However, real life always includes challenges. Not every decision will have a clear-cut, black and white answer, like the one above with the two moms. The best decision a mom can make is to ask God for wisdom, just as King Solomon did. The Bible says it’s better than asking for money: “How much better to get wisdom than gold, to get insight rather than silver!” (Proverbs 16:16).Wisdom helps build a successful home: “By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established; through knowledge its rooms are filled with rare and beautiful treasures” (Proverbs 24:3). And wisdom is an effective tool in heated arguments: “Wisdom is better than weapons of war” (Ecclesiastes 9:18).
When we ask, God gives generously, but he wants us to act like real mothers of faith, and believe that God will do what he says. The next time it’s crucial decision-making time, you may hear a divine whisper in your spirit. God may be allowing a heavy test of your gift when you hear him saying, “Will the real mom please speak up?”
Rest assured, when you use his Word as your authority, and his love as your motivation, you will usually make the right decision.
What kinds of decisions as a mom have been hardest for you? How has God given you wisdom in some trying situations? What would you do differently next time?
Ask not what God can do for you. Ask God what you can do for him.
God, how desperately I need your wisdom as a mom! Give me a discerning heart so I can face every decision that comes. Make me the kind of mother who knows how to point her children in the right direction—to your love.
© Rebecca Barlow Jordan, Day-votions® for Mothers (Grand Rapids, Zondervan, 2010), 160-163.
Rebecca Barlow Jordan is an inspirational author, speaker, and passionate follower of Jesus who loves to encourage others heart to heart. She has written 11 books and over 1700 other articles, greeting cards, and other inspirational pieces. Her daily devotional Daily in Your Presence is available for delivery through Crosswalk.com. You can find out more about Rebecca at www.rebeccabarlowjordan.com.