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What is Motherhood?

October 27
by
Deana Bringolf
in
Faith
with
.

I have been praying about what God wanted me to talk to you about. In praying, the topic of motherhood continually keeps coming to my mind.


Motherhood is something that has been on my mind from a young age. I remember the stories my mother would tell me of when I was young. I would push around a stroller with small children in the neighborhood. Being a mother was always one of my deepest desires. Even to the point that one day I thought I wanted to have at least 10 children.

Knowing that, my wonderful husband still married me and God began the process of teaching me what motherhood means.

After being married 4 years, God blessed us with our first child, Cooper. We were so excited to have this beautiful baby boy that came from us. He was (and is) a joy in our lives. It is such a huge responsibility God has given us to be a part of pointing his life to Him. After little while, we decided that we would try to have another. We continued to try but each time I would have a miscarriage. This was a time of great sadness for us. I didn’t understand why I couldn’t be a mother. I had wanted to be a mother so bad.

The doctors tried so many tests but nothing worked; finally, the doctor sent me to a hematologist (blood doctor) but when I showed up to the building it was an oncology (cancer) center. I had Cooper, who was 2, with me. I looked down at him and began to cry out to God. It was a very difficult moment for me. I then prayed to God and I surrendered being a mother.

I knew that I needed to be thankful for what I had.

As always God was up to something much bigger in that moment. We walked in the building and found out that all of the hematologists in town were at the oncology center. I wish the doctor had told us that earlier.

God continued to work in our lives and led us to a different doctor who diagnosed me with luteal phase defect. It is a condition when you have low levels of progesterone (what gets your body ready for pregnancy). So I went on progesterone and 8 months later, because I was already pregnant, we were blessed with another baby boy, Tyler.

After Tyler, my husband and I felt that we did not need to have any more children biologically but God keeps pulling on our hearts that there were so many other children that needed parents. This was the time when God started revealing to me different types of motherhood. In the midst of my praying for those who needed parents, we kept hearing about all of the children in our area that needed foster parents.

Fostering was not something that I knew a lot about and it was scary to think about the situations that these children were coming from. But God continued to remind me of how I had once surrendered being a mother to Him. God confirmed this in the heart of my husband and also our children so we began the process of getting ready to foster.

Finally, a year later, we got two boys, 4 months and a 2 year old, who came into our house and changed our lives. Cooper was 7 and Tyler 4 at this time so needless to say we got thrust back into the baby stage. These boys became part of our family. They were our sons. Through them, God allowed me to see that blood didn’t matter when it came to motherhood or family. My motherhood with them lasted for 14 months, when they were able to go back to their mother. We were so happy for them.

A few months later, we got a call that a foreign exchange student needed a family to stay with during her month in the states so I became a parent to a 16 year old girl from Germany. The boys finally had a sister. We loved having her live with us and being there for her.

In the midst of all of this happening, I became a college/campus minister.

God had already been making my heart realize that motherhood can look very differently. But I was in for a big surprise. You know how I had thought that I wanted 10 children. I now feel like I have 150 children. God has allowed me to be the mother of college students. They need someone in their life that will help to encourage and guide them in this transition to adulthood. They need someone to listen to their problems and be there for them.

I don’t replace their mothers, but I am just a substitute when they are away from home. Being a mother to college students is challenging. I can’t just be their friend when they give me the title of mother. Sometimes God leads me to tell them about things they are doing wrong and guide them back to the right path. When they ask me a question, I give them an honest answer, not an easy one.

Sometimes this leaves them not liking me for a while, but that is also part of parenthood. Through it all, I am blessed beyond belief in having them in my life. I am so glad that God changed my view of motherhood. Otherwise, I would have missed out on so many great experiences and so many wonderful people.

When I talk about motherhood, many people get concerned about our 2 boys. Please don’t. God has prepared their hearts for this as much as mine. They love having many brothers and sisters. Anyone that lives in our house is considered family in their eyes. It is really cool to see how from such a young age God has taught them that family is not just blood, family is whom you love.

I know that I had a limited view of motherhood and God is still changing how I look at it. I meet so many people today that can’t have children and a great sadness overwhelms them. Please continue to pray for what motherhood is supposed to look like in your life. There are so many children that need families, there are children that need mentors. There are also people that continue to have a lot of children. May we all pray about how many children we should have and about who else needs mothers.

Look around in your life. Are there young people that God has put in front of you to mentor and be there for?

I am reminded of Acts 20:35, “In everything I showed you that by working hard in this manner you must help the weak;” and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.”

I pray that we all remember and that we all strive to share God’s love with everyone and not limit what we know of motherhood to our own understanding.
I am sure that you have or will experience many different types of motherhood. If you want to share how God has opened your eyes to motherhood that would be awesome.


We need to remember that there are a lot of people that need mothers. I pray that through this God will help you to see that true motherhood is not just defined by blood, but by love and guidance.

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