Parenting with Purpose: Four Hand-Me-Downs from My Mother

As a young girl, I was extremely fascinated by my mother. She was filled with beauty, grace, and hospitality toward others – so much so that I was always on her heels, watching and emulating her every move. I wanted to be just like her in every way. Little did I know that my mother was already in the process of forming who I was and who I would become by the examples and lessons she was imparting. She was giving me her very best hand-me-downs!

Hand-Me-Down #1: The Plan of Salvation

My mother was a stickler about being in church regularly and consistently. We were faithful to go to Sunday school and church, and during the week, she would pose unusual questions to see where my thinking was. She would then align my thoughts with the scriptures. This was her way of teaching me God’s ways, so that when I became grown I would know which way to go. She led me to the Father, and now that I am older, I don’t need rescuing because she reached me when I was a child (Proverbs 22:6).

Hand-Me-Down #2: The Fruits of the Spirit

Even in times that I sensed were trying for her, my mom constantly exhibited love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22). By showing me how to bear the fruits of the Spirit, she handed down to me the ability to keep in step with the Spirit myself.

Hand-Me-Down #3: Generational Blessing

During my courtship to Rod, my now-husband of almost 12 years, my mother took the time to illustrate to me how I should respect him through my acts of kindness and words of encouragement. Then, like Isaac did to Jacob, she spoke words of wisdom and blessed us (Genesis 27:27-29), ultimately passing on a generational blessing. Recently, my daughter was prophesied over, specifically about her vivid dreams and the revelations God gives her through them. My daughter – like myself and her grandmother – is a deep dreamer and has great faith in the power and move of God. To this realization, I am brought to tears as I think of this priceless hand-me-down.

Hand-Me-Down #4: Work Ethic

 My mom is an amazing homemaker. She pays close attention to detail in the maintenance, upkeep, and edification of her home, and even more importantly, of her children. When I was growing up, she would arise early to prepare a warm breakfast for us daily, and before I left for school each morning, she would look me over, straighten every hair, fold my socks just so, and send me on my way – looking like I was headed to a modeling audition instead of off to school! When her extended family was in need, she always opened our door to them and provided a safe haven. She would tend to them with the Word of God until they were healed and ready to face life on their own again.

She was more than a wife and mother; my mom was also a recognized businesswoman.  She ran her home and business with great confidence and brought only good to them both. Her hands were always eager to work, whether it was selecting the best men’s fashions for our store or the finest fabrics to make my clothes.

There are so many more hand-me-downs that my mother passed on to me, but these four within me are so alive. I pray that as you reflect back in time over the hand-me-downs you received from your mother, you find many that helped you to become the great daughter of the Most High that you are today.

Now it’s your turn. What are you handing down to your children?


Originally published in SHINE Magazine, 5th Edition

SHINE Magazine 5th Edition



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