Mommy Wars

Mommy Wars

The “Mommy Wars” have found a place in the middle of a cultural discussion, recently appearing on the cover of Time magazine and surfacing in the Mitt Romney presidential run.

But the church is not immune to the temptation of competitive mothering, and we enlisted several Christian women to bring a biblical perspective to this cultural hot-topic.

As a wrap-up to last week’s five-part series, here is an index of links to all the posts along with brief excerpts pulled from each piece.

Are You Mom Enough? (Rachel Pieh Jones)

The message screamed at moms from this issue of Time, from television, Facebook, blogs, and Pinterest is: unless you are fit to run marathons, breastfeed into the preschool years, own a spotless and creatively decorated home, tend a flourishing garden, prepare three home-cooked meals per day, work a high-powered job, and give your husband expert, sensual massages before bed, you are not mom enough. From my perspective, however, the Mommy War is over. Done. Finished. Kaput. And I lost.

The End of Mommy Wars (Christine Hoover)

Because of the gospel, the Mommy Wars have no place among believers. After all, at the heart of the Mommy Wars is pride (“I am more spiritual than that mother because I employ this method and she does not.”), competition (“My children are better than hers because I employ this method.”), and self-condemnation (“I am not spiritual enough or a good enough mother because I don’t employ the method that she does.”).

Mommy Wars in the Local Church: A Parable (Gloria Furman)

God's forgiveness, and our knowing that we are forgiven sinners, frees us from the very things that spoil our relations with each other. It frees Christian mothers from the need to prove anything. It frees us from envy and one-up-mothering. It frees us from the craving for approval and praise that we seek from others. It liberates us to value each other in Christ, and to love our mother-neighbors as ourselves.

Mommy Wars Are Spirit Wars (Carolyn McCulley)

Therefore, the real “mommy wars” are not against other people and their parenting styles, nor even against Darwin, Sanger or those who promote similar ideologies. As Ephesians 6:12 says, “our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” The real mommy wars are spiritual. And this conflict began with the very first mother, Eve.

A Pregnant Woman’s Defense Against the Schemes of the Devil (Gloria Furman)

Scripture exhorts us to “put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil” (Ephesians 6:11). Even when the only pants and skirts that currently fit you are held up on your hips by a yard of elastic, the armor of God still fits you and you should wear it.

Tony Reinke is a content strategist and staff writer for Desiring God and the author of Lit! A Christian Guide to Reading Books (2011) and John Newton on the Christian Life: To Live Is Christ (2015). He hosts the Ask Pastor John and Authors on the Line podcasts, and lives in the Twin Cities with his wife and their three children. He also blogs at tonyreinke.com.