Mothers are Crucial to Family Success

Nena Arias | May 6, 2019

“The hand that rocks the cradle, rules the world.”

“The wisest of women builds her house, but folly
 with her own hands tears it down.”
(Proverbs 14:1)

"The Hand That Rocks the Cradle Is the Hand That Rules the World" is a poem by William Ross Wallace that praises motherhood as the preeminent force for change in the world. The poem was first published in 1865 under the title "What Rules the World".

A college student was asked about the difference between a house and a home. The response was, “A civil engineer makes a house. Your mom makes it a home!”

There are several sayings that emphasize the special place home is to most of us. Growing up I came upon the saying on a plaque that said, “Mother Makes a Home.” We also say, “there’s no place like home” and “Home Sweet Home.” What is it about our home that we love? When we reminisce, we will find that it is most of the loving, meaningful and dutiful things our mothers did for us and how they taught us what is truly important in life.

The opposite is true. If the memories of your mother are not pleasant ones, the outcome of your family was probably affected in a negative way and you don’t hold her motherhood in great regard. Most of us pass along those negative traits or we go to the other extreme so as not to duplicate our parent’s mistake. But the truth of the matter is that extremes are not desirable. 

It is well known that mothers play a crucial role in their families in the well-being of her children. The 31st chapter of the Book of Proverbs in the Old Testament of the Bible is the advice which Lemuel's mother gave to him, about how a virtuous king should reign, and also detailing the attributes of a virtuous wife or ideal woman.

What is a virtuous woman? The dictionary describes virtuous as conforming to moral and ethical principles; morally excellent; righteous and upright; showing goodness and kindness; a person with many beneficial qualities. In other words, a very beautiful person on the inside whose qualities flow outwardly and affects everyone she comes in contact with along life’s path.  

In general, it shows that a virtuous mother is a person who must first honor godly values to qualify because judging from the description those qualities don’t come easy or natural to human beings with a fallen sinful nature which we are all born with. Even a well-intentioned person will falter and fail and maybe not make amends. They may also be carrying negative baggage from their childhood. So, a woman as described in Proverbs 31 is a person who is very vigilant of not offending God, she is industrious and covers all the important details of a smooth and efficient running household. She holds herself accountable to God, and those around her, especially her family members, and spends quality time with them in love and service. If she falters and fails, she is careful to make amends with acknowledging where she failed and offers apologies and makes restitution.

There are exemptions to the rule, but a mother’s involvement is linked to children’s social and academic success. Children know Dad has less time to do this. A child needs to have a sense of love, guidance, care and parental involvement in their everyday lives and activities. They need to know that their parents are aware of their whereabouts not only at home but when they are not home. It is proven that children who get this from their parents have better grades and are better adjusted socially and are helpful to others. They learn from the good example of their parents.  

A mother has the sensitivity for good communication between herself and her child and is aware of the daily moods, attitudes and character milestones a family member is going through and seeks to connect on a good level. A mother pays close attention to the types of foods her family members like and prepares them with great care and at meaningful occasions like birthdays and when friends come over or just because.

It is usually the mother who has more time to search out and provide good books, videos, movies and other learning materials for meaningful and lasting learning experiences in the home. She usually plans out the family trips to museums, theaters, day trips, vacations, story time, games, possibly sings songs but also plans the family workday at home and assigns daily chores to the children to teach them responsibility and a good work ethic and teamwork for a smooth-running household. It also drives the truth home to love others as you love yourself.

Certainly, the quality of mother–father relationship, in particular the marital and spiritual status, makes a huge impact on the family’s stability. First and foremost, the respect, love and service to God in the family is most important not just religion. True biblical principles applied to all areas of life are the ingredients to true success in life. Children learn more by example than mere words. They want to see that you do as you say, not just say and don’t do.

Social science research indicates that children tend to do best when raised in intact married families, but something of great concern is that more and more, children are growing up without the presence of their own married mother and father. As one leading national family scholar notes, “perhaps the most profound change in the American family over the past four decades has been the decline in the share of children growing up in households with both biological parents.”1

Research demonstrates, mothers are crucial to the well-being of their children. Their own well-being, behavior, and parenting can have a significant impact throughout their children's childhood on a host of outcomes. It is of utmost importance to note that both mothers and children are affected by the presence and engagement of fathers in the home. The parents' marital status definitely seems to matter for the entire family so mothers can’t always take all the credit for the success. Parents and children are most likely to thrive in always-married intact families. However, the point is the quality time and input mothers have on children is the preeminent factor that can change the world.

“The wisest of women builds her house,
 but folly with her own hands tears it down.”
(Proverbs 14:1)