Traits of a Good Mother

W. Terry Varner
May 12, 2013

From the time Eve conceived and bore her first child, women have conceived and given birth to children. The process will continue until time ends. Good mothers seem to be rare when we consider the great number of neglected and abused children, as well as, the number of homeless children in society. What are some biblical traits of a good mother?

A good mother will love her husband. “Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanders or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children” (Titus 2:3-4, ESV). Paul listed that the wife is “to love their husbands” before he listed their love for their “children.” Somewhere and somehow, it seems that some women have come up with the idea that a mother can love her children and not love, but neglect or even hate, the man who has begotten them. The Bible challenges this idea at its very foundation. No woman can truly love her children as she should and not have a deep love for their father. If she shows resentment and bitterness toward her husband it will spill over on the children. Mothers cannot yell at their child, “You are just like your father! You are unloving, no good, etc.” When this happens a child knows immediately how the mother feels toward their father and how she feels toward him/her (child). The child will feel unloved, unlovable, unappreciated, and unwanted. He/she may feel guilty because he/she is the offspring of a man their mother hates.

A good mother loves her children. Titus 2:4 commands the mother to “love her children.” It may seem strange to us that a mother must be taught to love her children. Yet, when we look around us we can see the divine wisdom in this exhortation. The word “love” in this text is from philoteknos meaning “to be fond of, to be a friend to, to be a lover of offspring.” Children often see their mother as one who cooks, cleans, and sews. A mother loves her children with kindness. She acts as the child’s counselor. Children should feel free to approach their mother to discuss their hopes, aspirations, anxieties, and heartaches and know they can receive a sympathetic and empathetic hearing. They should feel free to express their fears and care to their mother without the fear of being “put down,” verbally abused, or humiliated.

Good mothers also trust their children. While trust is something that is earned, I am amazed at parents who do not trust their children. In no way am I advocating a child be turned loose to do as he pleases. This is not trust, but permissiveness gone sour. When we teach a child right and give the child a chance to practice right, the child deserves trust from the parents. It is difficult for a child to live under the cloud of suspicion, an environment of distrust, or mistrust. Our enemies may distrust us, but friends do not. Trust is an active ingredient of love. Mothers should love their children by expressing that love in many ways including trust.

A good mother has a devoted faith in God. Mothers can be great teachers of their children when it comes to learning about God and divine truth. Children need to see their mothers read the Bible and pray. A mother’s relationship with God is very personal. It involves more than going to church, though this is necessary. She prays and studies God’s Word. Daily devotion is food that feeds her soul and causes her faith to grow.