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We Are Sinful Mums with Mel Sheath

October 2022

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Laura: Hi, Mel, and welcome to unsung stories. Thanks for joining us.

Mel: Thanks, Laura. It's a pleasure.


Laura: so that our listeners can get to know you a little bit more. Could you tell us a bit about you or your family and just what everyday life looks

Mel: like for you? Yeah Married to Pete.

We've been married for 30 years in December, which is, seems amazing. It's lovely. Yeah. We've got four children aged 24, 22, 19 and 17. We've lived on the central coast for 20 years. We go to EV church. My life consists of part-time work. Part-time volunteer and part-time study.

Laura: Yeah, that's great.

Mel: What are you studying? I'm studying an advanced diploma of biblical, the.

Laura: Yeah, that's awesome. I didn't know that Mel. I love that. Yeah. It's

Mel: been really special.

Laura: Yeah, that's really good. I love having women on the show whose kids are just that bit older and so we can pick your brain and have you share your wisdom?

Cuz we all really appreciate wor learning from women like you. So I'm wondering if you could think back, what was it like at the beginning? Did you always wanna be a mom? How

Mel: was that for you? Yeah, thanks, Laura. I reckon from the time I was quite young, I wanted to be a mom. I had a sister who was 11 years younger than me.

And so I had a fair idea of mothering. I watched my mom, her and I got to be her big mom. Her big sister, mum, and. Yes. I really loved the idea of motherhood and I was never really particularly good at anything. Like I was miss average all through my life, but I thought the one thing I wanna Excel at is being a mom.

I really hope and pray. God gives me the gift of motherhood marriage first. And then motherhood. And and so I was thrilled. When I met my now husband and we were able to have our first child, I was so thankful to God. It was, it was what I longed for. Yeah.

Laura: That's really beautiful. I'm sure that many listeners can resonate with that desire.

So I'm wondering what happened. You met your husband.

Mel: yeah we were married for about five years. Yeah. And I prayed, I look forward to the time when we could have children, I started reading books about motherhood. I wanted to be well equipped. I was a kindy teacher. Yeah. So I, oh, so you thought you were gonna nail it?

I did actually. wrongfully pridefully. I thought I've watched all these moms and dads come in with their children. Over these years and I can pick a good parent how judgemental of me, how ignorant of me, but that's what I thought at the time. And I thought, yeah I can see what it takes to be a good parent.

And and I just longed to have my own children and to be able to teach them about Jesus. I wanted to raise them to. Wonderful members of society who themselves would be able to be so beautiful and so wonderful and so lovely because I had been such a good mom to them in our community that I would be able to win people for Christ mm. by being a good mom because of the way I'd raise my children. So

Laura: that was the goal. You feel like you knew what to do to get there? What was it like when you actually got to be a mom?

Mel: Yes really different to what I thought. I guess at first it's a huge adjustment, but it was a joyful adjustment amidst, not being able to sleep and all of those huge challenges that come with motherhood.

But I think what very quickly became clear to me, especially as our second child came along, was that. Did not naturally have the patience that I thought I'd had as a kindie teacher, when that patience, that just disappeared. I didn't have the resilience. There were so many things I saw in my character that were lacking to be a good mom.

So confronting it's so disappointing. It has been one of the great disappointments for me to find myself lacking the skills that I wanted to Excel in, in life.

Laura: Yeah, I think that's pretty Or at least for my own story as well, pretty common. I think it was the becoming a mum was the first time I could really see that total depravity.

I had done sinful things, but I just saw to my core how hard I tried to be the standard of good. That. Yeah, I called to, but also that I wanted to be and I just couldn't do it. There was just this brokenness and anger and garbage that would spew out to the people I loved most.

Mel: It's really confronting

Laura: isn't it?

It is. It's really confronting. So what did you do when you saw that, you had this frustration or anger or guilt or exhaustion and all of that comes with it. What did you do with it? .

Mel: For a long time, I felt just extremely guilty. And I started to carry around this terrible backpack of guilt and failure and disappointment in myself.

Loneliness felt very lonely in my skin. I would look at everybody else and think they're all doing really well. Or even if they're not saying they're doing really well I feel like they're doing so much better than me. And I think probably like most of us, we know we've been given this gift a life to care for and to raise and to teach.

We wanna be good at role models and examples. And we know like from studies and psychology, that the way we treat our children and the way we respond and is so powerful. What happens in their lives as they grow older and become adults, it also affects how they see and feel about Jesus so that it just feels like there's so much writing on how we handle our responsibility as mothers.

And when you see yourself failing well, I did, I saw myself failing. I've I realized in such a big way, I am not the person that I wanna be. Even like the person that you wanna be, but, and you know how important it is. But even in that, you, like you said, Laura, you this sense of not being able to be who you feel like you need to be, or you want to be, and.

Yeah, this terrible weight, isn't it of knowing yourself to fall short of not only your own standards, but gods as well. And yeah, that very humbling felt quite, yeah, very humbled very sad and down. And yes, cuz there's a

Laura: real grief with that as well. Yes. We love them so much.

We want to give them our best. Yes. But we can't I don't know about you for me. It made me turn and land on Jesus, because he's the only one that can be that standard that, like you said, like psychologists and everyone tells you, this is what our kids need, but I can't. I try, but I can't be

Mel: that.

Yeah. Yeah, that's right. I. In a really interesting way. God used motherhood to help me see. Who he is more clearly and what he has done for me. I became a Christian when I was nine and I went to youth group as a teenager I didn't have a family that um, well, my parents are divorced now. So there's a lot of stress in my family.

So I thought now I know what I need to do to be a good mom. And I saw other parents in other families, maybe a bit surface level, but I definitely saw Christian families work really well. And so I thought, yeah, but God used motherhood to help me. My sin. And I know that must sound really negative, but actually it was in the, seeing myself for who I really was.

That's not true, Laura. I'm sure I don't actually see myself clearly even but it took a big layer off. It's probably true for any mom whose greatest desire was to be a mom and he's to be a mom that it's the things we want most in life that God often chooses and uses to show us big things about him or about ourselves.

Yeah, and I think probably. One of my greatest problems was that I, and I still don't, but I didn't see myself as I truly was. I'm a first born so I, I was always the good girl. I always tried at school. I always tried to be the good girl. I always tried to do my best and.

I've tried to Excel, ended up being pretty average but wanted to do well. And then to get to motherhood and go, man. Wow. So God has taught me that I need Jesus and God has taught me that I am a broken sin. Who, even when I long to Excel and please him and be the best I can be, I still fall short.

And that's eight. That is eight something wicked in my heart because I see my sinfulness impacting my kids. Mm. And I've had to work through so many things in coming to terms with who I am. And God in his amazing grace and mercy has used this to help me see him more clearly and what he has done for me.

And I know this must sound weird, but that's actually been the greatest gift.

Laura: It must have been like a snippet on social media or something like that, but I feel like Matt Chandler summed it up really well. He said that God uses suffering to show us where we're not relying on Jesus, where we're not depending on God and where we need to come to him the most.

And I think there's something about motherhood that. It feels silly to say this, but it feels like suffering, but I think it's because you've articulated what we go through. So well it's when we are confronted with our sin there is a deep pain and it's a rightful response to grieve our sin and our our brokenness.

Everything that you've said. Highlights what Matt said, because it shows us where we so greatly need God. When we do try to achieve things, we do rely on our own strength. We must strap as much energy. I want to be a good mom. I am going to pour my heart and soul and try my darndest to do well at this.

But it's that self-reliance thing. And where God's saying no you need me. This is where you're relying on yourself and not me. Yeah. I'm wondering, I think it's a really helpful spot that you landed in seeing us in and seeing this brokenness, looking at you now.

You, I don't wanna I'm sure you would disagree, but honestly, Mel, I look at you and go, I wanna be Mel sheath. I wanna be a mom like that. Who just, you can see how much you love Jesus and depend on him. And point your kids to him. Like you're the poster child. Mel. I'm wondering how you've obviously Taken that brokenness and have turned towards Jesus.

I think there's this temptation where we can choose again, do we, this is all too hard. I'm packing it in. I'm just gonna try my best and fail, or you've not done that you've turned to Jesus. How did you do that? What did you do? What was that like? What did you do with that broken feeling? And I'm sure you're still doing that when you're feeling broken and defeated by your sin or motherhood.

Mel: what do you do? Yeah I've been on a journey. Mm. Finally has taken me on a journey of understanding what he thinks about us as sinners. So many good things to read. The Bible . God has given us great Christian authors. And so I've done a lot of reading and thinking and praying and some of the things that God has taught me, I'd love to share with you.

One verse that has, I've just marveled at is it's in Jeremiah, but it's also quoted again in Hebrews and it says I will remember their sins no more. And I've just stunned by that, that I have failed at the thing I wanted to do. Sorry, I haven't failed. I feel often like I failed, but I know because of who God is, he uses my weaknesses and his, and my failings, and he transforms them mercifully into.

Yeah, here's wonderful work but how amazing Laura, that that God says, I will remember your sin. Wow. That what is done for us in Jesus. And so I was reading through a beautiful book called God is enough. And it's a wonderful book by regalia, where he goes through some of the Psalms and he helps us to understand what's going on for the pharmist.

And I was reading through some of his reflections. He's really good. He's I love that. He says don't read my chapter until you've read the PSM twice wise author. I love that. That's great. But he says at the end of one of his chapters, could I read it for you? Yeah, I'd love to. He says And it spoke to me.

You may be mindful of those sins, that dog, your life and line your past. Yep. I can. I have that sins that weigh heavily on your conscience, even though you've confessed them with repentance, please know that God is saying to you. I knew you would commit that sin before I made. I chose you knowing you would commit that sin.

I was present when you committed that sin, but I want you to know, I stapled that sin to the body of my dear sun, and it is left at the cross. Never to be used against. The good news is that now there is only one thing that God does not know. It's your sin. God's great. Promise is this? I will remember your sin no more.

Wow. And I think when you know yourself to have failed and not to be able to keep your own standards, let alone gods to know that God is not gonna charge you. Or punish you for that sin, but it's actually been done away with God. Doesn't hold that against me. So as I've come to terms with who I am and what kind of person I actually am through the lens of motherhood, I've known God's kindness and grace to me in Jesus in a way.

I had never known before and it has shaped me and changed me and helped me. And it's the greatest gift to know God's grace. It's so

Laura: loving. I just feel I was thinking of run Corinthians where like in the definition of love and it being keep no record of wrongs, And so when we're on the back of seeing us in, so clearly you really love me that much to. Not remember it like, wow.

Yes. I don't. I just don't deserve, I don't deserve that. And it's just,

Mel: no, that's love, we don't deserve it. Do we yet? It is. God's delight to do that for us. It's his purpose and plan to do that for us.

And so it's hard. It's hard to keep recovering when you keep singing. I think sometimes I would get really stuck in that and the devil, the accuser would really have a go at me in that and be like, you don't deserve forgiveness when you keep doing it. Just, yeah, he would really narrow in on that.

And I have to keep, I have to keep coming back to this all the time. I don't get what I deserve. I am guilty. It's not that I just felt like I was a bad mother. I actually was. I actually reacted in ways that I'm ashamed of and yet still Jesus advocates for me. And. Says, I have done this for you.

Your skin was stapled to the cross. That's an amazing freedom to walk it.

Laura: Yeah. That's amazing. How do you go? So I think there's just wanting to sit in the, I feel like we've sat in the uncomfortable feeling of sin. And being refreshed by the love and the grace and the mercy that God shows us.

There's and there's so much beauty there. There's still this uncomfortableness that we are sinners who have hurt our children through our sin. I fucking gonna cry, we hurt the people we love with our sin. And I'm positive that wouldn't lessen with time.

No. Yeah. How do you navigate that?

Mel: Yeah it's a good point, Laura. Yeah. As they get older and you'd know this with your own kids, as they grow and you see them struggle or you see them, react badly in circumstances and you think, oh, how much of this is because I've not taught them well, or I've

Laura: not modeled

Mel: at all.

Modeled it. Yeah. Yeah, so you do. And now my kids, they're much older now, so I've seen their struggles. So how do I handle it?

Laura: And the panic that comes with that's because as you said earlier, that. We have this keen desire for them to not just be model citizens, but at the crux of it is to love and know Jesus for themselves.

And so if we are not modeling that well, if I mean their relationship with God is their relationship with God, our falling short and sinfulness isn't isn't the ultimate. But I do think it. Contributes to their understanding of God and Christianity. Yeah.

Mel: How do you go with that?

That fear. And I just, the way I feel that I can handle that is just continually keep coming back to Jesus and repenting in the heart of when I see my sin again and thanking him, paying for that and praying for my kids and doing that regularly, I. I've got a pattern of praying for my kids, which helps me entrust their needs and the things that are going on for them to God, so that I don't fret because I keep handing them over to the Lord.

So that's, what's

Laura: your pattern? How do you

Mel: go? And this is a gift I get to get up early. I make myself get up early, but it's actually become a gift to get up early. And I go for a walk on the beach and I try and do that every day. And each day of the week I cover a different child. And now my husband likes to come on the walk with me and so we pray together. So that's really good. We can talk about their needs together and pray for our kids together.

That's beautiful. Yeah. I just have to keep coming back to God. I need to rest in him. And in his promises, I love that Ephesians two says that God, who is rich in mercy, it's the only thing that God is described as being rich in mercy. So what does that tell me? That tells me. His mercy is abundant and overflowing and he loves my kids.

He loves our kids much more than we love them. And his desire for them is to know him and to trust him and to live for him. That's already what he wants for them. So I need to keep trusting that when I see my lack, perhaps flowing into their lives or flowing out of their lives or out of their decisions.

I need to stop and not allow the devil to get a foothold by accusing me. And I need to entrust my kids to the Lord. And prayer is such a beautiful gift that God gives us that we can pour out all our fears, all our anxieties and leave them with him. And his peace, which passes understanding will guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

And we've gotta keep standing on the truth and not allowing fear and despair that can come to rule over us because God is active. He's always at work. The pharmist tells us he never sleeps. He never slums. He's always at work. I find that a great comfort. It helps me enormously.

And when I feel panic rise and sometimes I do I'll I could even be walking through a shopping center and for some reason the accusations will just pile up and I feel like, oh my goodness I'm gonna cry. Or I'm, I feel like I'm panicking. I just have to hand that situation over to the Lord and pray.

Lord don't allow my thoughts and fears about what I have done or said. Influence and impact my ability to trust you in this moment. Just look after my child, please just keep praying. ,

Laura: That's really encouraging. I'm sure it resonates with a lot of women who are listening.

We've just gotta keep coming back to Jesus. And to pray and I guess to deal with us in, to keep fighting the good fight, to keep putting it to death. Yeah. Being a mom of four kids, I'm sure that there's lots of practical advice that you might be able to offer us as we seek to fight our in or steward our kids.

And even you sharing how you pray for each kid on a walk each morning what a practical, helpful tip I'm. My thinking, as you said that though was alright, I need to go for a walk and pray for my kids, but I'm also like, I'm not in a season of life where I can just get up and leave them every morning.

Wouldn't that be nice. I get that. Yeah. Yeah. So just encouraging other people, like you don't have to do it, how Mel does it, but maybe you could have it stack in as you fold the laundry. Could you. I don't know, pray for a kid as you do things that you ordinarily do. And over time we, we will have a chance to go for a walk one day.


Mel: is the reason of life being that walking thing? Isn't it? Yes. Yes. It's only been in the last, I don't know, 10 years and I think do that. So probably, yeah,

Laura: that's a, you've done the bulk of it, not doing that. That's right. That's we can't just copy and paste. What you've done is what I'm trying to say.

And I'm sure you're praying for your kids when they were younger, too. That's right. I'm just, we should be adjusting our expectations. How can we be? Yeah. Actively praying for our kids in the season of life that we are in things that we're already doing.

Mel: So it's sustainable. Yeah. Basically we know that we'll do whatever we think is valuable or whatever think is important.

So we make time for the stuff we really believe that is important. Don't we? Yes. And I like even one of my children, Tommy recently about one of their youth pastors. I'll tell you this quick story who is in the throes. He's got I think a three year old and a one year old and he says, it's so hard for him to find time to read the Bible.

So what he's done is he. Bible open at the microwave. And when he stumbles out of bed in the morning to heat up the bottle, He has his Bible sitting there and for the, whatever, I don't know if it's 30 seconds or minute and a half that he is standing there waiting for the milk to heat up. He reads his Bible.

That's so good. Sometimes that is all he will read in the day. Yeah. But he will then sit down with his infant and just try and reflect on what he's just read. Isn't that amazing. And it's just it's I love that because you. Imagine how much you'll actually get through. If you just even read 30 seconds a day, you would actually get through a fair chunk.

In over time.

Laura: I have two thoughts on that. One is Jen Wilkin. She says deposit what you can just keep if it is that one minute as you're heating up the bottle or if you can do longer, that's great, but just keep depositing what you can, because it will stack up over time. And my other thought is that we are very consumer minded.

We want growth. We want, or like even academic success. We wanna understand God, but I'm, there is, we are called to meditate on God's word. And so even if it is one verse that you read. In the morning as you're heating up the bottle, but to be thinking and meditating on that throughout the day. That's, that can sometimes be worth more than an hour long Bible study

do you know what I mean? God uses all of it and like that woman who gives her one coin. That's not little and insignificant to God. He uses little and insignificant things to do and grow us in mighty ways.

Mel: Yeah, that's right. Isn't it. And he knows. He knows our heart desire and I think as we are even I've just reminded all the time, just pray and ask for help with things and ask God to provide where you see a lack, but you have desire, ask God to help you find a way through and my experience over time is that he answers those prayers. It might not be instant, but don't lose the desire.

Laura: Yeah. So that's really helpful. I'm wondering right back at the beginning, how we were talking about the total de total depravity sin, that kind of big feeling. We've got to that it's God, who's going to be working in the spaces that we're falling short.

But is there anything practical that you would suggest that we try.

Mel: Yeah. I've got a few things, but can I say again that it's taken me my lifetime so far to learn and I'm still learning and still practicing because there's still things to deal with. So I'm at the moment, practicing, not reacting, I'm practicing, trying to work out.

It's so interesting with teenagers, sometimes you just get caught out. They'll just say something and you just find yourself going from not to a hundred, cuz you're so shocked. You can't believe what's just happened or unfolding in front of you. So I'm trying to remember in that moment. This is the time to say nothing.

Just keep your mouth closed and wait and ask questions and get the story and then try to bring no emotion. Jenny brown has a book called grow yourself up and I have found, and I've listened to some of her talks and I've found. She has so much to offer us as parents in her philosophy of of thinking about how to parent and one of the major things is she says you can't actually control your kids.

When they're very little, you actually can do things to control them. And often you regret the way you've controlled them. And that's tough, isn't it? But you can control them to some extent. I felt like I didn't have that much control to tell you the truth. I watched other people do an amazing job at teaching and controlling their kids.

But she says in the end, you can only control yourself. You are the only one. You actually have autonomy over . And so she helps you realize your place in the cycle of. Tension and frustration and stress and how you can respond in that space to actually rather than escalate the stress to minimize it.

And I've been putting that into practice over the last few years and I've found that really helpful. Yeah.

Laura: Makes sense. It's very helpful.

Mel: Yes. Yeah. So that's one, you could. Yeah. If you haven't had

Laura: a look at that, I started reading that book while I was on holidays actually. and how did you find it?

It was so good. I think I got through like the first chapter. And so we put our kids in kids club. A few mornings and my husband and I would lie down and read a book together. It was amazing. And he'd be reading his book and I'd be like, oh Leon, listen to this and I'd read it again. And then it'll be like two seconds later.

He is I can't even read my book cuz you are just telling me your book. And it was just so it was just so good. I was like, This makes so much sense. And then I got really excited because she's a Christian. And so I'm gonna, I'm actually keen to read her book and then find her and see if she can come on the show because it was just like blowing my mind.


Mel: that's brilliant, Laura. It was so

Laura: good. That's it was really good.

Mel: Wasn't it? Yeah's really good. Yeah, so that's probably one of the main things I would say is work out what you can do. What you can control your in yourself rather than what you are trying to make your children do. Yes. Even simple

Laura: things like when they're teenagers, I'm sure, but even when they're just little, just.

Breathe, take a big deep breath and get some oxygen into your body and ground yourself. And yeah. You said it don't, you are responsible for your reaction. So go slow, take a breath and practice now, like practice while they're little so that we can do what you're suggesting when they're teenagers.

Mel: Yeah, that's right. It's it's a really good strategy, cuz it sometimes with your children, you feel like you're helpless. You can't make them be kind to their sibling. It comes from the heart. All those things that you just. You can try and teach and you speak into that, there's a point where you just get so frustrated or whatever, but you can actually work on the frustration and how you respond.

And yeah. Another thing that was really interesting which I've only been able to resolve years later was that I remember going to the GP and saying, I, I need help. I'm a really bad mom, and I, yeah, I'm really struggl. What did they say? I said, I need some help outside of myself.

And so she was happy to refer me onto somebody and that was good to go and to get some clarity on parenting and on myself. But she said to me you are a good. And I thought that's so frustrating because you don't know what I'm really like. So it's not fair for you to say that, cuz that's why I'm here.

Cause I'm not a good mom. Do you know what I've realized over time. And even in the midst of me having said to you, I know I'm not, I haven't been the mum that I wanted to be, and I have failed profoundly more than, you know how Paul says, I'm the worst of sinners. I, so I always felt like I could Soly say I'm the worst of mothers if only you knew, because I was really guilty not felt guilty.

I was guilty. I ne I just didn't get it right, Laura. But the beautiful thing is. That as we come to Jesus with all that guilt, instead of hiding away, ashamed, and as we confess our sin and as we ask him to change us, and though it doesn't happen immediately, just keep coming back to Jesus. Just keep turning up for your kids, not allowing the despair about yourself, to erode your ability to get up in the morning and serve and love and care.

Just turning up to the best of your ability, even when that feels like that is just a very low bar. That is being a good mom. And in, I can see that now in hindsight. And I could see if I could just have removed that backpack that was weighing me down. And allowing my own despair in myself to crush me and my ability to just delight.

More than I did in my kids and make the most of situations and see God trust God in that stuff. Yeah. And I think it's so easy to focus on our failings, but my experience is that despite me, God is rich in mercy who has done imaginably more in my kids. Than I could have imagined. So I look at them and I'm just like, oh, sure.

There's things that they're working on. Sure. There's things that are not perfect about them as in all of us, but they are, God's workmanship and he has faithfully. Got them through. One of them at the moment is not trusting Jesus. And that is a great grief to me. Like huge grief to me, but whenever he's still alive I have hope I have that God will work wonders in him. So I just patiently pray. And yeah.

Laura: Oh, Mel. That's really beautiful. Thank you for sharing. I'm wondering if you would have any encouragement for the mom who's listening today. She just feels overwhelmed as she's confronted with her sin.

Mel: Yeah, it's. It's interesting how as your children get older and you see them go on in their various fields and you see them cope in life. You realize that the panic and the fear and the failure and the shame it's real, and it doesn't disappear, but there's a sense in which you can see God's goodness to them.

And there's a piece that comes as well. Is it a piece or is it just a thankfulness? So I'm just thankful because God has done more than I imagined in which he's been gracious to them.

Laura: Answered your prayer and more. Yeah,

Mel: exactly. And I think that the struggle continues. I think it's, it just is part.

Being a broken person. Sometimes my kids pull me up and they say, when you react like that, it's really difficult to be around you. And I'm like, thank you. telling me that and they can do that in nice ways, which is fabulous. So what I'm saying is I'm still a sinner. I still get it wrong.

And now I've got my kids helping me see that as well. And I just have to keep reorientating myself. And realigning myself to the truth God's truth. I have to keep reading my Bible. I have to keep asking for help to live it out. I find going to church and being with God's people every week. I. So helpful.

And meeting with people in small groups, praying with people during the week. Growing as a Christian, I think the more we know God and what he's done for us in Jesus, it shapes and changes us. It's the most profound. Truth. And the more we grasp it and that's something we can ask God, I may still keep praying Lord, please help me understand how wonderful you are.

Help me understand how much you love me, how much you love my family, help me know you, that I might speak of you and live out what it means to be your person. So it just keeps being a life of trusting Jesus and entrusting my kids. Yeah. Everyone, myself and to the Lord. And keep working hard at following him.

That's. Really

Laura: encouraging. Thanks Mel.

Any, anything else that you would wanna add? Any biblical encouragement, anything, or do you feel like,

Mel: you've wrapped up? This is something I just keep holding onto. It's something I read in another book. It's John Newton and he's the writer of amazing grace.

And I won't go into his biography now, but at the end of his life, he said, my memory it's nearly gone, but I can remember two things that I am a great sinner and that Christ is a great savior. And I remember that all the time. That's the truth about me? Yes, I am a great sin. But I have a great savior and he's greater than my sin.

And so I think no matter where you're at in the struggle of parenthood, motherhood, that yes, we are sinners and sometimes motherhood highlights that in profound ways, but we have a greater savior. One who has dealt with our sin, nailed it to the cross. And we don't have to carry it anymore.

And so to live in the joy and freedom, that is ours in Christ.

Laura: That's beautiful. Thanks, Mel. That's fine. Oh, that was so beautiful. Just to. I never thought it seems weird to say, but to reflect on how far we fall short, but how great God's mercy is, what a comfort and a reminder it is for us as we go about parenting. I'm really thankful for everything you've shared and encouraged us with today.

I'm wondering if you would mind wrapping up the show by praying for us in our motherhood and for the listeners

Mel: today. I'd love to thank you our father, we thank you so much for Jesus. We thank you that he lived the life that we should live. Thank you that you allowed him to die on the cross to take our sin, our brokenness, our failings, our disappointments, and they are dead.

They are gone. They are paid for because of what Jesus has. Thank you Lord for rising again, and giving us new life in you that we are not alone, that you are near to us that you advocate for us. Thank you, father, that in the midst of the joys and the struggles and the disappointments of our lives of our journeys as mothers.

That you are close to us that you know us, that you come near to us, thesist reminds us father that you hurry to our aid. And so I pray for my sisters and And their families and ask Lord that you would help us to rest in you and to know the peace that passes understanding of who we are of our circumstances that we might entrust our lives to you.

That we might be found faithful on the final day when we meet you face to face. And thank you, Lord, that you use this beautiful gift of motherhood to shape us and to form us and to make us more like your son, Jesus, that we might honor you and bring you glory. Please use us further in the lives of our children.

Please help us to be good role models and to love them. Thank you, Lord, that you make up for all our failings and Lord, we just ask that our children would grow to know and love you in Jesus name. We pray. Ah, amen.

Laura: Ah, amen.

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