A New Measurement for “a good day”

Feb 20, 2012

This past weekend I had the glorious opportunity to attend the Sally Clarkson “Momheart” Conference here in DFW.

Yes. I’m still pregnant. Although I had a little “scare” Friday morning…and went to see the doctor. But I got the green light to go to the conference.

When I thought I was going to have the baby and miss the conference, I was devastated (not the typical reaction of an almost 39 week pregnant woman). But I needed this one last “hurrah”. A “cheering session” of sorts before entering the newborn stage.

God was gracious to me. I received exactly what I needed.

Sally Clarkson shared so many wonderful words of inspiration and wisdom. I could write pages and pages with all the things she said. However, as I reflect back on the overall experience there is one main thing I took away:

A new measurement for being a successful mom.

Going into the conference I knew I have been “off-base” in my parenting. I know I’m pregnant and I need to give myself grace. BUT I can’t use that as an excuse for how I’ve been parenting. We’ve been in a bad cycle and I just couldn’t break it.

Over the course of this past weekend several other moms, in addition to Sally, spoke words of encouragement and experiences. Each one shared frustrations with kids who fought. Kids who disobeyed. Kids who said angry or ugly words.

It hit me.

I have been measuring the success of my day and my parenting by my children’s behavior. If they fought. If they disobeyed. If they were “ugly”. THEN I was doing a bad job and we had a bad day.

But according to these moms, their kids do these things too. All kids sin. And they will keep making bad choices and they will keep sinning. In fact, they will sin their entire lives. As their mom, I will continue to sin!

I’ve been using the wrong measuring stick…their behavior.

Sally focuses a lot on connecting with the heart of your child. Spending time working on the relationship. Not allowing life to distract you from your primary ministry in this season…your children.

My new measuring stick of success is my heart connection with my children.

photo credit

If we end the day and my children feel loved & accepted, THEN it was a good day. They may have fought. Broken things. Used potty talk. Disobeyed. Thrown tantrums. BUT if I stayed connected with their hearts in the midst of all that…it was a success.

The key for me is not getting emotionally wrapped up in their behavior.

Focusing, instead, on my response. Controlling my reaction. Showing grace and love.

Connecting with their hearts and worrying less about controlling their behavior.

“Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins.” 1 Peter 4:8

What do you use as a measure of whether you had a “good day” or a “bad day” with your kids? Do you struggle with getting emotionally involved in their behavior?

Linking up with:


  1. 29lincolnavenue

    Heather I just love this take away. What a precious word for you to hear and share.

    And I’m so glad you got to go!
    praying for you!

    • Heather MacFadyen

      Thank you stacey! Thank you for your prayers!

  2. 4tunatemama

    This is sooooooo good, Heather. I too measure my good days vs. bad days with this measuring stick too often, and expect my kids not to sin, even when I’m sinning in my reactions and impatience with them.
    I’m so glad you were able to go, and I’m praying for you!

    • Heather MacFadyen

      Oh the sinning ourselves in our reactions…yes, so true! Thank you for your prayers and encouragement!

  3. Sally Clarkson

    So fun to see you last weekend and so glad you make it through. I am honored by your words.

    • Heather MacFadyen

      Thank you Sally for so many amazing words of wisdom! Thank you also for stopping by my blog and encouraging me!

  4. Kara @ Just1Step

    Wow I love this!! Just found your blog through another blog. Will have to stop by again. 🙂

  5. Clare

    Heather, this was exactly what I needed to hear today! Thank you for sharing what you took away from the conference, it is so valuable and appreciated. Praise God that you got to go after your ‘scare’. Praying that you enjoy your last special days as a mummy of 3 and that your sweet new baby has safe and speedy arrival 🙂

    • Heather MacFadyen

      Thank you Clare! Glad that God could use what He’s teaching me to minister to you as well.

  6. ali @ an ordinary mom

    Behavior is such an easy measuring stick to default to, isn’t it? Their behavior is what we see, hear, and many times feel. It’s right out there on display, to see & react to.
    Reading their hearts, reading our own hearts, now that takes some effort, and it has to be intentional, because I don’t know about you, but it sure doesn’t always come naturally to me. I’m so thankful to the examples of such wise women like Sally Clarkson, to encourage and teach us these things!

    The conference was such a blessing, and it was SO fun to meet you and see that adorable belly! (You make an absolutely beautiful pregnant woman! You should keep having babies :))


  1. Few Favorites Friday: New Baby | God centered mom - [...] this week started with the Momheart conference weekend. Good friends, kindred spirits, and a re-focusing of my parenting =…
  2. The Words that Carried Me in 2012 | God centered mom - [...] If at the end of the day my children feel loved & accepted, THEN it was a good day.…

Pin It on Pinterest