Our Keepsake Journal is Here! 🎉

I wanted to raise my son to be a gentleman. A man of integrity, kindness, gentleness, self-control . . . basically a guy with the fruits of the Spirit.

I had good intentions, but as I watch my son growing taller and hear his voice deepening, I realize I didn’t do it . . . well, not like I expected. I mean, I tried telling him what he needed to know.

I wanted to make these things important, but I don’t think I didmy husband did.

Don’t get me wrong, we make decisions together and discuss family challenges during dates at the grocery store, hushed conversations in the bathroom, or pillow talk that inevitably turns to the kids.

We want our son to have a relationship with God and to value church, so we take him to church and Sunday school. He attends the weekly youth group. Our family discusses what the Bible teaches during daily conversations. If this was the perfect recipe, I could say I did my best (well, I had some off days), but my recipe wasn’t complete.

RELATED: Dear Kids, May Your Faith Be Your Own

My husband attends church faithfully next to me, serves where needed often giving up an evening each week, and shares what he’s learned at church in dinner table discussions. He shows humility when he seeks forgiveness, love as he willingly does the most mundane chores, and genuine growth in his walk with God as he shares what God is showing him and prays aloud for our family.

I see where his influence shines in our daily routines.

The evenings my son eats an early supper before his practices, we share the kitchen while I make supper for the rest of the family. As I am stirring at the stove and asking about his day, he suddenly goes quiet. When I turn around, I see he paused to ask God’s blessing on his dinner—just the way my husband does when he comes home late some evenings.

I wanted to raise my son to put God first, but my husband showed him how.

When I go shopping with my son, he always opens the door for me. Sometimes I continue the conversation as I head in the store, and it takes me several paces before I realize he isn’t there—he’s back at the door holding it for the next group of shoppers like his father does.

I wanted to raise my son to be considerate of others, but my husband did it.

I wanted to teach my son to be partners with his future wife. I want him to share the weight of the home with her. I want him to know how important it is, but I don’t know if I ever explained this in a way that makes sense.

RELATED: A Letter to My Future Daughter-In-Law While I Rock Your Husband

I do know that as my son clears his plate away after supper and thanks me as my husband has done for nearly every supper for the last 20 years, that it’s not a reflection of my desires but my husband’s consistent modeling. I wanted to teach this character trait, but I didn’t.

My husband did.

Yes, I am sure my words shaped him, too, and hopefully, my serving and loving example has gone a long way to creating the man he will be. I see it when he is quick to fast forward through a PG-13 scene, when he strives to be on time everywhere he goes, or when he shares an answer to prayer he marvels at. I treasure the ways I see him responding to my leading, but even more, I treasure the ways he follows my husband’s example.

Before you roll your eyes and comment, “Just wait until he turns 16!” let me tell you that I understand the teen years strain the parent-child relationship to near breaking points. I cringe knowing some of his peers will be strong influencers and not all for the better. He might assert his independence in ways that frustrate us, and storms may be ahead. Maybe or maybe not.

For now, I marvel at what he’s learning and pray God will strengthen him in the years ahead.

And I am thankful.

RELATED: I’m Raising My Son To Be a Good Man Like His Daddy

When I admire the faithful, kind, and loving young man my son is turning into more and more each day, I can’t help but admire my husband at the same time. After all, my son reflects my husband as my husband reflects Jesus more and more, and it’s a blessed sight.

I couldn’t be happier that I didn’t do it my way.

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Check out our new Keepsake Companion Journal that pairs with our So God Made a Mother book!

Order Now
So God Made a Mother's Story Keepsake Journal

Tanya Teichroeb

Tanya is a wife to a wonderful man and mother to three precious children in northern British Columbia. Tanya is learning to look for the good in the hardships and the beauty in sharing her experiences. In her spare time Tanya enjoys coffee, reading, gardening, and silence. You can follow her at https://www.facebook.com/TeensandCoffeeBeansbyTanyaTeichroeb/

The Day My Mother Died I Thought My Faith Did Too

In: Faith, Grief, Loss
Holding older woman's hand

She left this world with an endless faith while mine became broken and shattered. She taught me to believe in God’s love and his faithfulness. But in losing her, I couldn’t feel it so I believed it to be nonexistent. I felt alone in ways like I’d never known before. I felt helpless and hopeless. I felt like He had abandoned my mother and betrayed me by taking her too soon. He didn’t feel near the brokenhearted. He felt invisible and unreal. The day my mother died I felt alone and faithless while still clinging to her belief of heaven....

Keep Reading

Jesus Meets Me in the Pew

In: Faith
Woman sitting in church pew

I entered the church sanctuary a woman with a hurting and heavy heart. Too many worries on my mind, some unkind words spoken at home, and not enough love wrapped around my shoulders were getting the best of me. What I longed to find was Jesus in a rocking chair, extending His arms to me, welcoming me into his lap, and inviting me to exhaust myself into Him. I sought out an empty pew where I could hide in anonymity, where I could read my bulletin if I didn’t feel like listening to the announcements, sing if I felt up...

Keep Reading

Can I Still Trust Jesus after Losing My Child?

In: Faith, Grief, Loss
Sad woman with hands on face

Everyone knows there is a time to be born and a time to die. We expect both of those unavoidable events in our lives, but we don’t expect them to come just 1342 days apart. For my baby daughter, cancer decided that the number of her days would be so many fewer than the hopeful expectation my heart held as her mama. I had dreams that began the moment the two pink lines faintly appeared on the early morning pregnancy test. I had hopes that grew with every sneak peek provided during my many routine ultrasounds. I had formed a...

Keep Reading

5 Kids in the Bible Who Will Inspire Yours

In: Faith, Kids
Little girl reading from Bible

Gathering my kids for morning Bible study has become our family’s cornerstone, a time not just for spiritual growth but for real, hearty conversations about life, courage, and making a difference. It’s not perfect, but it’s ours. My oldest, who’s 11, is at that age where he’s just beginning to understand the weight of his actions and decisions. He’s eager, yet unsure, about his ability to influence his world. It’s a big deal for him, and frankly, for me too. I want him to know, deeply know, that his choices matter, that he can be a force for good, just...

Keep Reading

Mad Martha, Mary, Mom, and Me

In: Faith, Living
Woman wrapped in a blanket standing by water

As a brand-new, born-again, un-churched Christian fresh in my new faith with zero knowledge of the Bible, I am steaming, hissing mad when I first read these words from Luke 10:38-42: “Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching. But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, ‘Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell...

Keep Reading

I Can’t Pray away My Anxiety But I Can Trust God to Hold Me through It

In: Faith, Living
Woman with flowers in field

I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t afraid. I was scared of people, of speaking, and even of being looked at. As I got older, I worried about everything. I was aware of the physical impact that stress and worry have on our bodies and our mental health, but I couldn’t break the cycle. I declined invitations and stuck with what I knew. Then we had a child who knew no fear. The person I needed to protect and nurture was vulnerable. There was danger in everything. It got worse. He grew older and more independent. He became a...

Keep Reading

Your Kids Don’t Need More Things, They Need More You

In: Faith, Kids, Motherhood
Mother and young girl smiling together at home

He reached for my hand and then looked up. His sweet smile and lingering gaze flooded my weary heart with much-needed peace. “Thank you for taking me to the library, Mommy! It’s like we’re on a date! I like it when it’s just the two of us.” We entered the library, hand in hand, and headed toward the LEGO table. As I began gathering books nearby, I was surprised to feel my son’s arms around me. He gave me a quick squeeze and a kiss with an “I love you, Mommy” before returning to his LEGO—three separate times. My typically...

Keep Reading

Mom, Will You Pray With Me?

In: Faith, Motherhood
Little girl praying, profile shot

“Will you pray with me?” This is a question I hear daily from my 9-year-old. Her worried heart at times grips her, making it difficult for her to fall asleep or nervous to try something new. Her first instinct is to pray with Mom. Perhaps this is because of how many times her Dad and I have told her that God is with her, that she is never alone, and that she can always come to Him in prayer and He will answer. Perhaps it is because she has seen her Dad and I lean on the Lord in times...

Keep Reading

My Aunt Is the Woman I Want to Become

In: Faith, Living
Woman with older woman smiling

It’s something she may not hear enough, but my aunt is truly amazing. Anyone who knows her recognizes her as one-of-a-kind in the best way possible. It’s not just her playful jokes that bring a smile to my face, her soul is genuinely the sweetest I know. I hope she knows that I see her, appreciate her, and acknowledge all the effort she puts in every day, wholeheartedly giving of herself to everyone around her. When I look back on my childhood, I see my aunt as a really important part of it. We have shared so much time together,...

Keep Reading

A Big Family Can Mean Big Feelings

In: Faith, Kids, Motherhood
Family with many kids holding hands on beach

I’m a mother of six. Some are biological, and some are adopted. I homeschool most of them. I’m a “trauma momma” with my own mental health struggles. My husband and I together are raising children who have their own mental illnesses and special needs. Not all of them, but many of them. I battle thoughts of anxiety and OCD daily. I exercise, eat decently, take meds and supplements, yet I still have to go to battle. The new year has started slow and steady. Our younger kids who are going to public school are doing great in their classes and...

Keep Reading