Single Mother Parenting is Not an Easy Path

Path in woods

SMORE Class @ Calder – June 2, 2013

Raising Children Hurts

Gail Cawley Showalter

Good News & Bad News – Are is it?

Written for my grown daughter, Treva, February 4, 2010

A personal confession. I need to “get” this on the deepest level. No matter the age of your children, when they hurt, you hurt.

The biggest contradiction of motherhood is that we want happiness, pleasure, and success for our children.

Yet we know that only through valleys will they climb the mountain and have  joy which is much more precious than the often shallowness of human happiness.

Life is difficult. And it is apparently designed to be. So how can I rejoice—when my child hurts and is in despair?

I can worship-knowing-the release of the spirit can only come through brokenness.

There’s more to come: We continue to shout our praise even when we’re hemmed in with troubles, because we know how troubles can develop passionate patience in us, and how that patience in turn forges the tempered steel of virtue, keeping us alert for whatever God will do next. In alert expectancy such as this, we’re never left feeling shortchanged. Quite the contrary—we can’t round up enough containers to hold everything God generously pours into our lives through the Holy Spirit! – Romans 5:3-5

As Mom I so yearn to patch the broken places. Also as Mother I know the true richness that will come when the spirit breaks through into their lives lived with His purpose as their own.

There is no happiness as precious as the joy of knowing you walk with the Almighty.

Every step can be filled with purpose and, yes, a true happiness.

Life is all about the holiness of God. Our relating to Him, in relationship with Him, drawing our will in line with His.

Life is not about our wishes and desires.

Life is all about aligning with Him, His will, alone.

Thus the struggle. And the confusion that can come while we are searching for our way.

So to distill it down to a spiritual way of life that I can manage, I do this. I acknowledge:

  • There is a God and I am not him. Or He is not me, if you prefer. Give this some thought, don’t skim over it.
  • I accept that Christ is who He said He is.
  • The Holy Spirit is my test for truth. I believe in the power of Spirit and that Pentecost was a very real experience. When one experiences it in their own life there remains no doubt. I hope it makes a difference in your life.
  • There is good and evil. Good is better.
  • I want to spend my energies on good.
  • Good sometimes means loving the unlovable.
  • Good means I forgive because Christ said to and did so during the most awful suffering possible. How could I not?
  • I should worship.
  • In worshiping I must accept my life as it is, not as I would have it be.
  • As I keep my eyes on Jesus most things, at least in my life, come more clearly into focus.

Dear Single Mom,

I was about thirty when I began my personal spiritual journey into the deep parts of my soul and developed my own beliefs. I have confidence in you and even more in the Spirit that will lead you on your way.

You are more remarkable than you know. You have some marvelous treasures that will be revealed to you along the way. You will contribute to others in ways you haven’t yet dreamed. And this gives me joy.

He comes alongside us when we go through hard times, and before you know it, he brings us alongside someone else who is going through hard times so that we can be there for that person just as God was there for us. I Corinthians 1:4

Keep trusting in Him and Stay on the Path.

“The issue God is dealing with in our lives is not so much what we do, but what we are. All of us tend to underestimate the remaining sinfulness in our hearts. We fail to see the extent of pride, fleshly self-confidence, selfish ambitions, stubbornness, self-justification, lack of love, and distrust of God that He does see. But adversity brings these sinful dispositions to the surface just as a refiner’s fire brings impurities to the surface of the molten gold.” Jerry Bridges in Trusting God

Related post: The Single Mom Struggle and If I Could

 This publication is protected under U.S. Copyright laws [© Gail Cawley Showalter, 2010] However, it is also a ministry to those who need it. While you may pass along this article freely, please check before reprinting anything in another publication. In most cases, all she requires is proper credit.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Nothing in this or other emails or materials from Gail Cawley Showalter should be considered as psychological or legal advice. Gail is not a psychologist, psychiatrist, therapist, or lawyer. These suggestions are simply suggestions and not guaranteed solutions to your particular problems. Gail offers this information because she was a single mom for sixteen  years and holds masters degrees in education, including special education. She taught on all grade levels including college. She offers support, encouragement, and suggestions to help you succeed as a single parent. 


  1. Treva Sanders · · Reply

    Really, you wrote this for me in 2010 . . . I don’t remember this one.

  2. Sam Showalter · · Reply

    this is a very nice post. Deep, thoughtful and helpful.

    Love. Sam

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