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DAY 3: Mommy of Littles


Danielle Marstaller, Worship Service Director at New Hope Town in Honolulu, Hawaii, and mom to two adorable little boys. 


Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:4-5 NIV


Remain. I’ve been hearing this word, echoing through my achy body, my frazzled spirit, my exhausted mind. It’s the Spring of 2020 and I’m sheltered in place, abiding in the closest proximity possible to my children who are 6 months and 3 years… you know, the age where children still don’t understand where your body ends and theirs begins?! I’m in that magical and exhausting time of motherhood that is absolutely saturated with emotion (or maybe it’s always like this as a mom?). The joy of snuggling the baby you’ve yearned for, the depth of love you feel just looking at their little faces, the pain that wells up in your chest as you watch them grow, AND the knife-sharp guilt that can easily saturate many moments of motherhood (no matter the season). And wow, mom-guilt can be so heavy.

I’m guilty a lot. I yell too often, and we definitely eat too much sugar. I worry if I’m giving my time to the right things, every single time I have to put them in front of a screen to hop into a zoom meeting. I find myself wondering, too often, if I have what it takes to mother my children well. 

Daily, I’ve needed to remember to put down my striving and my guilt and remain.  As John 15 states, we MUST remain in Jesus who promises to be our source, our life, and WITH us. He promises to be the strength I can’t muster, the good I can’t conjure, and the rest I need for my soul. He is the life that will sustain me, so I can produce love and nourishment for my children. He doesn’t expect me to have it together, and he also doesn’t ask me to muster more “mom-grit” to do better. He makes it real clear in this passage that “trying hard” to do it all right, I’ll actually end up doing nothing good. He calls me simply to remain. To ABIDE. To live in Him, as I create a home for my little ones. To shelter in my praise to him, as I shelter in place.

Reread John 15:4-5. Remain in Jesus, take a moment and rest in him. No mother can do the good she hopes to by herself. She must remain in Jesus. Imagine the weight of the mom-guilt falling away as you allow yourself to connect to your source, your help, your guide - Jesus.


Jesus as I reflect on the promise of this scripture, I ask for you to forgive me for striving and allow me to thrive in this season of motherhood. Help me to unlock the power of your presence as I REMAIN in you.

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Lori Bumgardner
May 17, 2020

All you need is love and nourishment from your Father and that’s all your children need most from you❤️ Great devotional, great job raising your little ones ❤️👍🏼


LindaMarie Rojo-Schmidt
May 13, 2020

Only God does the pruning for each of his children. We are not the gardener. Water and light are necessary components, But feeding must take place, or else a stunted with no blooms, or fruit. Don't just survive in these hard times, let your roots go down deep in the word of God, & in the Holy Spirit. Prayers of just even 2 believers in unity is a big shout up to heaven. Look up, where our help comes from.

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