By Pam Kanaly, Crosswalk.com
Life for single moms often operates in the realm of the urgent, with so many responsibilities having to be taken care of NOW. From getting the kids ready for school in the morning, to the endless demands of home life after 5 p.m., single moms are on the go non-stop. Survival mode is rooted in the NOW. Who has time to consider what’s happened in the past?
But here’s one past event that’s imperative we stop and think about: the resurrection of Jesus Christ. How could that one historical event change the way a single mother lives, breathes, and thinks? Friend, it changes her entire existence in three ways.
1. The resurrection affects the past.
Many of us can’t move forward because we’re shackled by emotional regret. I received this note from a single mom: “Pam, no matter how hard I try, I cannot forgive myself for my former lifestyle. I got pregnant and found myself in jail a number of times. I’m a follower of Christ now, but I still beat myself up every day. Guilt and regret rule my wellness and joy.”
Although it’s true that our past can be a deathly noose around our necks, it doesn’t have to stay there. When Jesus rose from the dead, He broke the bondage of our former foolishness and feelings of unworthiness. Jesus didn’t just die for our sins; He died so that all crippling emotions associated with those events could once and for all be declared inoperative. I love that word: inoperative. It means what formerly tormented us is now pronounced from the throne of Almighty God as out of order, busted, unable to do what it once did.
Friend, are you still oppressed at work or in your spare time (what’s that?!). Do these thoughts cause you to limp along spiritually and emotionally? Then declare war on the enemy’s lies. Raise the cross of Christ high as a victory banner over your “NOW.”
2. The resurrection affects the present.
At every corner it feels like there’s not enough fuel to do the single-mother job effectively. It’s physically hard when the children are preschoolers, and emotionally stressful when they’re teenagers. We understand when she yells, “I’m at the end of my rope!” But guess what? That’s what the resurrection is all about.
I remember as a little girl being mesmerized watching trapeze performers. Just when I thought they were going to crash and burn, they were thrown another rope. That’s what the resurrection did for us. God threw us His rope—just in time. Peter describes this rope as one woven with the Father’s divine power (2 Peter 1:3). This rope swings us through every difficulty in life, an apparatus that had “the same power that raised Christ from the dead.” (Ephesians 1:19-20)
What is it that seems scary and out of control in your realm? Recovery from a broken heart? Fear of the unknown? Unsettledness over the children? We can activate Christ’s risen power within us at any time during the day, knowing that it is fully sufficient to land our two feet safely on the ground.
3. The resurrection of Christ affects the future.
What are you going to do when your children grow up and leave the house? That’s a scary thought for all moms who find their core value in their children. Of course, others have said in moments of frustration, “I can’t wait for that day!” (Yes, the thought of peace and quiet often sounds heavenly!) Yet one day, if the Lord wills, you will be an empty-nester, and maybe even one that has no plans for marriage anytime soon. I know one single mom with young children now who is already afraid of being on her very own someday. Her future is not a place she likes her mind to visit.
The truth is, the resurrection of Christ raised up God’s plan to give you a future and a hope, a future of purposeful service and fruitfulness. God is preparing you now while you have children at home to learn lessons that will serve your future effectiveness well as a “solo” parent with no kids in the house. God told me when I was a single mother that He would raise me up and give me a ministry for single moms when the kids were gone. I held on to that. Friend, there is no need to dread the future! The resurrection of Christ is your daily insurance that the God who began a good work in you will continue… on and on until we see Him. Hallelujah!
So what difference does the resurrection make to the single mom? Oh, nothing more than… E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G!
Pam Kanaly, selected as National Mother of Achievement – 2015 - in Washington, DC, and best-selling author of The Single Mom and Her Rollercoaster Emotions, remains one of the nation’s leading advocates for single mothers. She is the co-founder of the national organization Arise Ministries bringing encouragement to single mothers worldwide through their online education center: EQUIP. Pam is a favorite in Oklahoma having been nominated by the Governor for Oklahoma Mother Making a Difference. Pam and her husband Rich reside in Edmond, Oklahoma. Visit ariseministries.net and download the FREE Arise Ministries app.
Photo credit: ©Thinkstock/ChickiBam