Home Pastors Articles for Pastors The Nature of a Woman’s Nurture

The Nature of a Woman’s Nurture

We see in God’s Word that womanhood cannot be described apart from talking about God’s image, the gospel and how Jesus Christ is restoring us. Being made as a woman in God’s image is surely a wonder-full thing.

Motherhood (by which I mean rearing children and raising up spiritual children/disciples) is by no means an idol that we serve, but rather an intentional gift God has strategically designed and given us so that we might see his glory and make him shine. We’re called to learn to rejoice in Jesus because motherhood is the work of his hands.

Nurturing in the Way of Christ

If womanhood cannot be handcuffed to mere biology, can nurturing be relegated to procreation? Through the gospel we see that fertility and “filling the earth” is something that extends to bearing fruit that will last through discipleship—a privilege and responsibility that every Christian woman gets to enjoy. It is only through the clear glass of the gospel that we can see ourselves in the big picture of God’s story. He is seeking worshipers from the nations, and he uses us to gather them.

In the light and power of the gospel, the goal of nurturing is human thriving in the most magnificent capacity possible—that all the nations would see and savor Jesus Christ forever. The call to nurture is the call to lovingly meet the needs of others for Jesus’ sake (2 Cor. 4:5).

Cruciform Mothering

Because all motherhood exists for Jesus, all motherhood should be in the way of Jesus. In our obedience to the Great Commission, every woman must look to the Man who is ruling from heaven at the right hand of God. Christ himself puts people in our household and in our sphere of influence, and we rest well knowing that it is the Lord who builds the house. It is God himself who grows the garden, even as we diligently plant and water. By God’s grace, we can serve people—husband, child, neighbor, coworker, whomever—because Jesus is sovereign, and he is building his church.

Jesus is the one who redeems people for his own possession. This truth assures us that this work will be effective. We are free from laying claim to any fruit of our mothering labors as if they came from us, and we are free from the fear-mongering, workaholic mothering that thinks everything is up to us.

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Gloria Furman is a wife, mother of four, doula, and writer. In 2008 her family moved to the Middle East to plant Redeemer Church of Dubai where her husband, Dave, serves as the pastor. She is the author of Glimpses of Grace, Treasuring Christ When Your Hands Are Full, and The Pastor’s Wife, and blogs regularly at the Gospel Coalition and GloriaFurman.com.