“Behold, every one that useth proverbs shall use this proverb against thee, saying, As is the mother, so is her daughter.”
~Ezekiel 16: 44
It is sad that the proverb, “As is the mother, so is her daughter” would be used in a negative fashion. Though the verse above is speaking about Israel and her rebellious offspring, it is also very applicable to us women today.
I remember reading once that we should be careful that we do not discipline our children for the sins we ourselves have taught them. This can be so true. How many times do we get frustrated at a behavior in our child only to by humbled by the knowledge that it is the weakness which we suffer from ourselves? Yes, “like mother, like daughter” does apply to us today.
It can have a lethal connotation when we think of the likes of Jezebel and Athalia. However, it has a beautiful implication when we think of the lives of Grandmother Lois and Eunice.
We need to constantly pray for strength and wisdom for our dear maidens are watching…
If we are thoughtless to the way of our dress, so (most likely) will be our daughters. If we are frivolous and given to much spending, so (most likely) will our daughters. If we are often idle and show no desire to cultivate industry in our home, so it will (most likely) be with our daughters. If we show haughtiness, boldness and a lack of respect to our husbands, so surely will our daughters. And the list goes on.
We are instructing in every moment, whether it be positive or negative. Through our actions, we are tutoring and we are teachers.
“A disciple is not above his teacher,
but everyone who is perfectly trained will be like his teacher.”
~ Luke 6:40
A heavy responsibility lies with us. Our influence is tremendous. Instead of getting frustrated with our dear ones, let us pray for wisdom to be ourselves the woman we want our daughters to be. God desires to give us these good things, we need only to ask (Matthew 7:11). Elizabeth Prentiss wrote it perfectly when she penned the following:
“And there are my children! My darling, precious children!
For their sakes I am continually constrained to seek after an amended,
a sanctified life; what I want them to become I must become myself.”
~Excerpt from Stepping Heavenward
Lady Shannon and Kitty on the Dunes by James Shannon
Dear ladies, faint not! Naturally we will never be flawless but we can point our daughters to the One who is! We can show by our example that it is the instruction of the Lord we consider in every aspect of our lives (2 Corinthians 10:5). It is important to share with them the Scriptures that convict you of what you are striving for in yourself and for your family. Explain that it is His will you desire to uphold when you dress each day, when you practice good stewardship, when you embrace your role as keeper of the home, when we respect our husbands and so forth. Most importantly, they should see that it is the Lord God we go to when our heart is in turmoil, our sins are heavy and our constant failures and need for forgiveness is necessary.
When pondering in this light, the phrase “like mother, like daughter” will not be so overwhelming. It is in this living example of a godly woman and the One she serves that are the greatest of all teachers. We will never be perfect but our lives should echo the words given by Apostle Paul when he said…
“Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.”
~ 1 Corinthians 11:1
The “imperfect” JES has been the wife to her “one and only” for 15 years and is a homeschooling mother who embraces her role as “keeper at home”. Her passion to promote Biblical womanhood through godly examples in history is shared at Heroines of the Faith, where the past meets the present. Inspiration and ideas about homemaking, homeschooling and homesteading is shared at Strangers and Pilgrims on Earth.
Thanks for reading!