Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come. —Proverbs 31:25 ESV
My mom was not cool.
Not at all. Not one little bit. Not even close.
Don’t get me wrong, my mom is a wonderful person. She is funny, witty, and smart. She is generous, compassionate, and gentle. She gives objective, balanced advice, a well-blended cocktail of truth and love.
My mom met my dad in college and they married shortly after graduation. I came along five years later, the first of three daughters, so she set aside her masters’ degree and teaching career, so her children could have a stay-at-home mom.
As a working mom, I have a deep appreciation for my mother. That being said, she was not my buddy, and she was not cool.
Recently, my on-air co-host (90.9 KCBI) Jeff Taylor, posted a question to our listeners:
“When you think about the world your kids are growing up in, what concerns you?”
I knew well in advance we would be talking about this, so I had plenty of time to formulate a response.
My number one concern for our children today is cool moms.
When did it become okay to follow the trends our kids are setting?
Consider the selfie. Several years ago, it was considered obnoxious and narcissistic to post a picture of oneself on social media. It was something our teenagers did on Instagram, and we, as adults, collectively shook our heads and sighed.
Some of the recent selfies I’ve seen on Facebook—by moms: “Bored in the carpool lane,” “Dramatic eye make-up, whatcha think?” and “New outfit, feeling cute!”
As moms, we must understand that we hold more influence in our children’s’ lives than anyone else. The goal is to train them, guiding them to be gracious, intelligent, caring, and compassionate hard-workers. I want my daughter to love Jesus first and others second. I want my son to hold himself in high regard and walk with dignity.
My heart breaks for the woman who needs to be propped up by the comments and “likes” of people she may scarcely know on Facebook.
Another example is the need to be trendy. Sisters, we do not need to impress our children by “speaking their lingo.” Shorty shorts with the pockets hanging out and spaghetti straps are not appropriate for six-year-olds, sixteen-year-olds, or sixty-year-olds. Our daughters don’t need mani-pedi partners, they need moms. And moms who sound like a Disney Channel sitcom aren’t cute.
They are, however, guiding the next generation of leaders.
The question is what are they guiding them into?
My son is an independent introvert, but my sweet eleven-year-old orbits me. She wants to do what I do. She says what I say. She tries on my dresses and teeters around in my shoes. I have a tremendous, God-ordained duty to love her well and provide her with a godly role model.
And that means we’re not friends.
It means she has firm boundaries that are not crossed.
It means we have showdowns that sometimes end with her stomping down the hall to her room in an angry huff.
It also means we have sweet conversations about wisdom. I explain to her that, just as God knows more than I do and therefore doesn’t give me everything I want, mom has been around the block a few times and loves her enough to make tough decisions on her behalf.
Some of those decisions include postponing cell phones and social media. My kids understand that bedroom doors are privileges, not rights. Tablet devices charge overnight in our room, and no one uses the computer unless they’re supervised.
Caitlyn doesn’t get to do everything her friends do. She used a car-seat booster long after her friends did, because the law says she needed to; a point of contention when classmates half her size sat up front.
Sorry, honey. I love you too much to bend on this. I will sacrifice my status in your eyes for your safety any day of the week.
Nope, I’m not a cool mom. My kids are not my friends, although someday they certainly will be. Their long-term character is far more important to me than their approval. My speech, my clothing, and my behavior toward others, in life and on social media, must be a reflection of who I want them to become.
If they can’t look up to us, moms, who will they look up to? #HollywoodAintCuttingIt
Thanks, Mom, for being uncool and raising me to be an uncool mom as well.
She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue. She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: “Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.” Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
—Proverbs 31:26–30 NIV