How do we define a good mother? I think it is a lot easier to define a good doctor or a good mechanic than to define a good mother. The reason is because it is subjective. If she serves our interest, we will then say that she is a good mother. If she doesn’t, we will then say that she is not. I remember hearing a man’s describing his mom as a good mom. The problem is he is not a good man; he has ruined so many lives. And the mother has never said anything about it. She always stands by him, defends him, and lavishes him with love.
I think we all can agree that a good mother loves her children, and she shows it by caring for and accepting her children as they are. A good mother puts her children’s needs over and above those of her own. But a good mother must also be firm in the matter of right and wrong; she is to be a beacon of light so her children can learn to distinguish between good and bad; and what the will of the Lord is.
Susanna Wesley was such a mother. At the age of 19 she married a pastor, Samuel Wesley, and she bore and raised 19 children. Yes, her husband was a pillar of the church, but it was she who became the pillar of her family. She cared for each child and guided them not only when they were small but all through adulthood. It is no wonder that two of her children, John and Charles, became the pillars of the church, the Methodist Church—John through his preaching and teaching, while Charles, through his hymn writing.
When Charles reportedly converted, he wrote to his mother to tell of his newfound faith. Hearing the news, she rejoiced with him but wrote, “Not that I can think that you were totally without saving faith before, but it is one thing to have faith, and another thing to be sensible we have it.” I admire her wisdom; for not being caught up in the emotion; and for being able to see clearly and act rightly.