So God Made a Mother Collection ➔

This was supposed to be an amazing year. It began with an optimistic to-do list and lots of achievable goals. We were going to get so much accomplished and make so many family memories. Everything was going great. And then I realized my plan was not His plan, and the year took a different turn.

For us, it happened quickly. A wildfire came through in unprecedented fashion and wiped out 1,100 homes in our area. We, unfortunately, had one of those homes and lost everything. The pain from an event like that through the following weeks was unbearable. Sitting in our hotel, I realized we couldn’t even meet the basic needs of our children at that moment. They only had a few items of clothing, and I couldn’t feed them anything that didn’t come from a drive-thru. All our special memories and most basic possession were gone.

Maybe you are one who had a tough year, too.

Maybe it was the end of a marriage or the death of a spouse. Perhaps it was the loss of a family member or a catastrophic change. Or maybe it wasn’t just one devastating thing, but a series of difficult events throughout the year. Financial stress, a difficult parenting season, car or job trouble, family tension.

RELATED: I’m Not Strong Enough To Carry All This—But God is

Whatever made this year a difficult one, I encourage you to take the time to find the good. Finding the good in pain does nothing to minimize the pain, but instead gives it a purpose. Speaking from experience, seeing the good is not easy, especially when you are in the mist of pain. In the weeks following the loss of our home, people would tell me that something good would come from this. And I did not see it. I couldn’t see past the pain. But now, a few months later, I can see the goodness that is coming from such a horrible, devastating twist in my plan. There are lessons to be learned, ways I can help others, and opportunities to come closer to God.

In the midst of this year, I have learned many life lessons I hope to pass on to others.

People want to help and it’s good to accept their generosity.

Home isn’t found within the walls of a home, but wherever we are with family (even in a hotel room).

Kids don’t need material things to know they are loved.

RELATED: Dear Child, I Know This is Hard On You Too

Kids are resilient. Usually we don’t want to have them go through the difficult things that lead to resilience, but, with our support, it’s good for them.

Goodness will always prevail, even when we think evil has won.

We can lose everything incredibly quickly, but holding onto what is lost in our hearts will not prevent us from moving on.

We don’t always want what is given to us in life. But there is a reason, and whatever that reason may be, there is a chance to reach others or something we can learn.

There is an opportunity to help others with what we have learned. There is the chance to be the light and goodness for someone else.

The saying “God won’t give you more than you can handle” is a popular one. But I have come to believe it isn’t true. He will definitely give us more than we can handle alone. And that’s why we desperately need Him.

RELATED: God Actually Does Give Us More Than We Can Handle

I pray that no matter what made this year more than you can handle, that you are able to find the good. That you are able to find the comfort of knowing you are never alone. That you are able to find the lesson and the way to reach others.

2019 may seem like it was a year we want to forget, but let’s never forget the lessons. We can enter 2020 more resilient and ready for whatever trials come our way.

Emily Scott

Emily Scott, PhD, is a stay at home mom of three, and part time parenting consultant and blogger who has written and spoken on various parenting topics including child development, ACEs, and tips on raising responsible kids. 

While I Wait for Another Door to Open, I’ll Hold One For Someone Else

In: Faith, Living
Woman teaching another woman by computer

I’m waiting for another door. All my life, I’ve been told that when God closes one door, He opens another. And here I am, staring at the imminent end of the business I’ve built from nothing. Closing down what I started up from sheer willpower, too much caffeine, and the bold determination to work for myself. Scratching out what I made from scratch . . . and it feels horrible. God didn’t just close this door. He slammed it shut, boarded the whole thing up, and hammered the nails in where I cannot pry them open. Believe me. I’ve tried....

Keep Reading

Separating Work From Home is a Must For Me

In: Faith, Motherhood
Mom with baby smiling

If I close my eyes and let myself, I can still see the 11-year-old boy with his pale feet sticking out from under the blanket, on his way to the morgue after a gun accident.   If I close my eyes and let myself, I can still see the still, blue form of the 3-month-old who passed away in his sleep. We gave CPR and all the medicines “just in case,” but that baby was gone long before his caregiver brought him in through the door. If I close my eyes and let myself, I can still see the 3-year-old...

Keep Reading

When Teens Are Hard to Love, You Love Them Harder

In: Faith, Motherhood, Teen
Teen boy sitting with hood up

I lay face down on the floor, praying. Praying in the loosest sense of the word. Praying in the Romans 8:26 way—you know, when the Spirit “intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.” Because I could not utter any actual coherent thoughts at that point. I was weary and beaten down. Day after day I had been in combat, battling an opponent I didn’t anticipate: one of my children. My own child, one of the people I had lovingly grown inside my body and loved sacrificially for all these years, had staunchly and repeatedly put himself in opposition...

Keep Reading

In This Stage of Marriage, it Feels Like We’re Roommates Who Share the Same Kids

In: Faith, Marriage
Distant couple on phones in bed

How do you get it back? How do you get back the love you once had? Everyone told me marriage was hard and having kids was hard, but I had no idea it would be this hard. I thought everyone was lying because our relationship was solid before marriage. We were best friends. Some days I feel like we’re roommates who share the same kids. It disgusts me even to say that, but it’s the truth. Marriage is hard and has ugly sides to it that everyone seems afraid to talk about. RELATED: Keep Showing Up Even When Marriage is...

Keep Reading

You Are the God of Details, but God These Details Don’t Make Sense

In: Faith, Grief, Loss
Window open with shutters

That was not the plan. What just happened in there? We walked out a bit defeated. More than a bit. I felt deflated. Things were supposed to be different by now. This wasn’t what I asked for or expected. This wasn’t even what they told me would happen. We cross the street in silence. Headed to the car and as soon as I shut the car door, I could no longer hold it in. I let the tears flow. All this unknown. I don’t understand. This is life. This is foster care. This is what we chose. That doesn’t make...

Keep Reading

I Am a Good Enough Mom

In: Faith, Motherhood
Mother kissing toddler

I came to motherhood knowing nothing about the job. My mother’s example wasn’t an example at all, more of something to forget, and maybe even get therapy for. My own son was the first newborn I’d ever held. When I became a mom, I was 23 and clueless.  Because of my personality, I wanted to do everything right and parenthood was no exception. I read all the books on parenting I could. I talked to older moms and soaked up all the advice they gave me. Having no idea what I was doing made me look to outside sources to inform...

Keep Reading

God’s Plan For Me Wasn’t What I Expected

In: Faith, Motherhood
Woman walking with children silhouette

I grew up in a family where we knew who God was. We went to church, and we were involved in church. However, when we weren’t at church, time spent in the Word fell to the wayside. Don’t get me wrong, my parents were wonderful people, but we didn’t make that a priority in my house.  Going into adulthood, I realized I had deceived myself into believing I had a relationship with God. I knew God loved me, but I questioned whether I loved Him. I wasn’t living life in a way that was glorifying to Him. I’m not only...

Keep Reading

But God is Still Good

In: Faith, Living
Woman looking out window

“I can’t afford a new one,” I thought to myself as I shampooed another stain. This can’t keep happening. Maybe I made a mistake. I have to make this last. And the couch. And the clothes. And all the things. We are done having babies. The price of food has doubled. It’s astronomical to fill the cars with gas. Things are closing in on me. How can I best serve my family? Survival mode engaged. When I read the news, when I follow the headlines, when I listen to the conversations around me . . .  I hear fear. Loss....

Keep Reading

Jesus Helps Me Smile Through the Weary Moments of Motherhood

In: Faith, Motherhood
Woman holding toddler girl, color photo

“Mom, why aren’t you smiling?” My 4-year-old took one look at my face, and like an open book, she could read me. Sometimes I wish I could hide it better, tucked behind an infinite smile or a pasted-on happy face. Sometimes I wish my beautiful children—so young, free, and fun—wouldn’t see my face on a day like today. RELATED: Motherhood is Hard, But Loving You is the Easiest Thing I’ve Ever Done You see, it’s just so hard—all of it. And I am just so tired. Between working a job, trying to keep up with being a supportive wife and...

Keep Reading

The Guilt of an Angry Mother Meets Grace

In: Faith, Motherhood
Mother and son hug at home

“No one’s perfect,” I think. I’m mopping up my overspilled anger like the remnants of an erupted chocolate volcano that hit the kitchen floor.  It was the last bucking whine of “I don’t want chocolate in my milk” that did it. The culmination of about one million “I want chocolate in my milk”s ended with a sticky muddy river of it from highchair to floor.  After reasoning with my toddler, which never works well, I gave in to his adamant refusal of white milk for a chocolatey exchange. He responded to my surrender like a 2-year-old. He revolted. Little feet...

Keep Reading