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The Power of One Woman, with Clare Toro

Have you ever wondered, “What difference can I make?” Regardless of your season or role, even your small acts of faithfulness matter. Clare Toro joins our hosts to share how one woman made a big difference in her life. She recounts the faithfulness and godly influence of her mother-in-law, Maria. As Mother’s Day approaches, may you be encouraged to celebrate your mom and other mothers you know, and consider how God wants to use you to impact the generations to come.

Episode Notes:

“30-Day Mom Makeover Challenge”

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Erin Davis: I'm just one woman. Have you ever said those words? Have you ever thought those words? Welcome to Grounded a production Revive Our Hearts. I'm Erin Davis.

Portia Collins: And I'm Portia Collins, along with our co-hosts, Dannah Gresh and Alejandra Slemin. We're here live every Monday to give you an infusion of hope and perspective. And you know what? Your heart might just need it if you feel like I'm just one woman facing a world of problems. I know when I'm in the middle of a mess, which is often, it feels like that.

Erin: We're always talking about how we're on the struggle bus.

Portia: I’m driving the struggle bus, baby. Sometimes I struggle with the question, What difference can I make?

Erin: Yeah, I think every woman asks that question and wrestles with that question. What difference am I really making here?

My heart is still recovering from last Monday's Grounded. If you missed that episode, be sure and check it out. We were actually talking about dealing with dementia. But so many of you Grounded viewers wrote to us in the chat. You shared with us how ill equipped you feel to be caregivers. We were talking in the context of dementia last week, but caregiver can mean so many things.

And certainly, if you're a mom, a grandma, a stepmom, then caregiver applies to you. I love it when Grounded is really a conversation, and you let us have a little peek into your lives. But also, I know that nobody is going to throw you a parade in your kitchen for being the caretaker of the year.

Even though this is that week that Mother's Day is coming. We often feel under celebrated. I hope you're celebrated this weekend. I know that most days are not like Mother's Day. It can feel pretty thankless to be a caregiver, that constant routine of taking care of others and disciplining, of making meals and cleaning up the meals, of doing the laundry of putting away the laundry. I'll be honest, there are days when it feels like it's just not worth the effort to keep doing this.

Portia: Yep, I know that struggle. And sometimes you kind of get a little resentful.

Erin: Yup.

Portia: Because you're like, “Oh, wow. I gotta deal with this.”

Erin: Sometimes I get a lot of resentful, if I’m being totally honest.

Portia: Me too. Me too. I just wrote about it this weekend. Last week I cried so hard I feel like.

Erin: You did.

Portia: I am in a season where I've just weepy. I'm like the Jeremiah the “Weeping Prophet.”

But I think it is so sweet that we get to celebrate our caregivers.

Erin: Yeah.

Portia: It was really impactful for me to see us celebrate caregivers. Nobody's throwing a parade. But if I could, let me just tell you, I'd make the banner. We’d have all the floats, the bands, and everything.

Erin: Love it.

Portia: I would make the caregivers the grand marshals of a huge parade for all their sacrifice and faithfulness.

Erin: That’s a parade I want to go to.

Portia: Yes, they're making a difference. I just really wish I could do more. I pray that God gives me opportunities to do more to help our caregivers feel seen.

Erin: We would have to have a lot of floats for mamas. You have a whole parade just to celebrate the mamas. And we would want to honor all of you who are caring for others day in and day out. Women like Loretta.

Loretta, you wrote to us last week on Grounded. Here's what Loretta said “I'm a 24-hour caregiver for my mom who has had multiple aneurisms and surgeries.” Then she said, “Thanks, ladies for the prayers. Lord, thank You for Your grace.”

What I love about that is in one second she's telling us this story about being a 24-hour caregiver. But in the very next breath, she's thinking of others and begging the Lord. That's the heart of a caregiver right there.

Portia: Absolutely. Absolutely. I've got a comment from Patricia. We have women like Patricia who say “Listen, my mom has been diagnosed with psychotic dementia.”

Erin: Wow

Portia: “I am her caretaker. It's so hard to watch my mom who had such a sweet, sweet spirit be totally changed.” Oh, my prayers with you, Patricia.

Erin: And one more from Carol. Carol doesn't have a family member who has dementia, but she wrote this to us last week, “I worked with dementia residents for years as a nurse in two nursing homes, both of which had dementia units. I love working with them. It's hard. I love the families too.”

So whether you are caregiving for someone of any age, or maybe you're in a season where you're the one and you need a lot of care, I know that there are often many days strung together in a row where you're wondering, Are my small acts of faithfulness, doing anything? Does it really matter that I continue to serve the Lord and to serve others?

I'm going to tell you, we believe you're making a difference in the world. But we are going to tell you a story that is going to drive that point home this morning.

Portia: Yep, we've got Maria Toro, who suddenly found herself a single mother of seven children.

Erin: I cannot imagine. All single moms have my ultimate respect. Single mom of seven children unthinkable to me.

Portia: I guess I'm not a single mom, and I only have one child, but I'm always I'm driving the struggle bus man. I'm trying the mama struggle bus.

Erin: Your Emmy is five children in one, so that counts for more than one.

Portia: Yes she is, thank you. Thank you.

So my hat goes off to Maria already. Maria was feeling the confusion that many of us do when she was faced with an unexpected twist in her life in her story. And so, the question was, how would she be able to do all this? How would she make it all alone?

Erin: Yes, well, in honor of Mother's Day, we invited Maria's daughter-in-law, Claire, to join us here on Grounded. We're going to hear from her in a minute. She's going to tell the story in her own words of how just one woman can have an impact for Christ that lasts for generations. You're going to be amazed.

Portia: Amen. Amen. I'm excited. But first, we need our co-hosts.

Erin: We’ve got to have our co-hosts.

Portia: Dannah, Alejandra, give me the good news.

Dannah: Gresh: We would love to. Good morning, friends. Oh, it wouldn't be Grounded if we didn't have some good news to start your week off with a smile, would it?

Erin: That's right.

Dannah: You know, I'm thinking as I listen to those stories from listeners from last week, how they're caring for their moms, what would they give to go back to make Mother's Day a parade for that woman? When she could remember, when she could be honored and understand. I want to make this a good Mother's Day for my mom. And today we're just kind of letting the photos tell the story as we celebrate all mothers, with photos of our own moms.

This is my beautiful mother, Kay Barker, with my very handsome dad. And my mom has taught me to love my family well. There really are no words to describe the kind of mother she is. She did all the big things well, like handing me devotional tools when I was eight years old and expecting me to dig into God's Word.

I mean, I love that but she did the little things, well. She was what I call, my carpool queen, because she drove me everywhere—gymnastics, piano, all the things, but she was also my sleep over BFF. I can remember my mom perched on the shag carpet steps. I really think the girls came to hang out with her, I do.

But she would not leave that that perch until every girl was asleep. Now looking back, I realize how wise that was as a mom. But one of my greatest goals in life is to be the godly matriarch that she's become. They say a picture's worth 1,000 words.

So can I just throw in a second one because this is my favorite photo of my mom. It's one of her with my nephew, Peter, from a few years ago. I think it just sums up how available her heart is to all of us and how very, very loved she is.

Portia: Oh, I love it. She is beautiful.

Well, here's my mom, Regina. I call her queen. This is a picture when I was a baby, and her as y'all can see, I think I look just like my mama.

Everybody thinks their mom is the best, but I really think my mom is the best. Fun fact: my mom is the reason why I like video games. Remember, I told you I don't play Candy Crush and that other stuff. I like real video, guys. So she would play Super Mario Brothers with me all the time growing up, and we just share so many sweet memories. Look, I got my baby who is going into the bedroom.

But most of all, my mama taught me how to be resilient. My mom deals with chronic illness as well, just like me, and she just keeps going. She fights every day, all while giving God the glory and the honor and the praise. And it is just it's been such an inspiration, and it's so impactful to me.

Erin: I love that you call her Queen, Portia. Well, this is my favorite photo of my mom. Her name is Jenny. And that's me and my twin sister Nikki. I'd say we were maybe three or four years old, and my sister and I were pulling that photo out of the book. It was stuck to the glass. You know, it was analog baby. We both said to each other, “What a looker.” My mom is such a beauty. But this photo represents where I spent my entire childhood, pulled in close to my mom with her smiling at me like that.

I have always known that my mom loved being a mother. There's never been any doubt. It's been her favorite role of her whole life. And here's the other thing about my mom, she made everything an adventure. The road that went down into our little cul-de-sac where we live, she called that adventure road. Every time we went down it she said it's time to go down adventure road.

And every year she planned something called kids’ vacation. We just went, now looking back we went and did all the free stuff. We went to the free zoo. We went to the parks. We packed picnics. But she was making an adventure. She would plan elaborate tea parties for my dolls. There are pictures of me and all my dollies and all the food she would make.

She planned the most fun road trips. We had a box of fun every time we went anywhere. And every time we stopped, she pulled something out. She made everything an adventure. And when I was about eight years old, my mom unexpectedly found herself to be a single mom. Overall, she never wanted to, but man, did she embrace it? She thrived. She held us together.

She took us all to Disney World that year. And she later told me it was because she needed to prove to herself that she could do it on her own, and she did. We had ventured on a budget. But we had fun, so I stand on my mama's shoulders.

Here's a picture of me and my baby Ezra. He’s on my lap me smiling just like my mom did. So my mom taught me hold those babies close, put a big smile on your face and make it all an adventure. I hope my boys say that I take them on places like adventure rides during COVID. We started doing COVID coasters. So anytime we go down the hill, all the hands go up. We do COVID coasters. I learned it from hearing you ladies. It feels like we should have grown up in the same neighborhood. That would have been would have been fun to have.

Alejandra: Today I want to honor my mom and my grandma. Both of them have had such an impact in my life. So here you see four generations of women. My mom and my grandma, both of them have an important role in my life.

My grandma has the best recipes ever. You can show up at her house anytime, and there's food on the table. Not just physical food, but also spiritual food. And my mom has always been there for me—fun, calm, passionate, and faithful to the Lord Jesus and to her family. So hey, love you, mom. Love you, grandma Anders. Yeah, they're so beautiful.

How long has it been since you've seen your family? It's been a full year now. We've been . . . she's been in Dominican, so it's been it's been pretty difficult.

My heart feels for you, friend My heart feels for you. Well, all that picture that was kind of a pictorial parade wasn't a girlfriend.

Erin: You know, it reminds me of Proverbs 31, “Her children rise up and call her blessed, her husband also and he praises her. Many women have done excellently but you surpass them all.” I feel like that's what how we feel about our moms, isn't it?

Dannah: Yes, it is. Well, I hope you are celebrating your mom this week, and maybe even being celebrated as a mom. But I also know that for some, this is a hallmark holiday that brings a lot of pain.

Perhaps you've lost your mom, maybe to COVID. I have a few friends in that in that situation, and your heart is just really hurting. Or maybe you haven't had a nurturing mother and it's difficult to rise up to call her blessed. Or could it be that your body's just not cooperating with your heart's desire to become a mom. Or maybe you are that single mom, and you suddenly find yourself in circumstances that you never expected all alone.

Well, whatever emotions you're struggling with, I invite you to lean in, because you're about to hear a testimony of hope from a single mom of seven children. Maria Toro’s story may give you the perspective you need to face this week of celebrating motherhood. And this story is so precious that we produced a video with photos for you. It's a little longer than videos we usually share with you here on grounded. It's about five minutes, but let me tell you, you won't want to miss a single second, because here comes a deep, deep dive into hope and perspective.

Video content

Announcer: Maria Toro loves the Lord and His Word. She had one daughter and six sons who also love the Lord. But her husband did not share her passion for knowing God.

Maria: We would always read our Bibles. He would always call us names and call me names all the time. He will always just be very difficult.

Announcer: Maria started listening to Revive Our Hearts with Nancy Demoss Wolgemuth on the radio. Revive Our Hearts was a lifeline for Maria as storms started to rage all around her. Her husband was unfaithful and left their family for a time. When Maria welcomed him back, he led their family in a difficult move.

Maria: When he came back. He said we're moving to Pennsylvania.

Announcer: There the storms continued to rage. Maria was diagnosed with cervical cancer. Her doctor told her it came from an infection her husband gave her a result of his unfaithfulness.

Around this time, Maria noticed something about her sons. They saying all the time there was no more people to play with. So they went down in the basement and the history of singing together started.

Song:

“Rescue me. Rescue me.”

Announcer: But even while her sons were making joyful music, the storms continued to rage. Maria needed her husband's help as she sought treatment for cervical cancer. Instead, he left the family for good.

Maria: The last time that he left was harder than the other times because I had trusted him. There were times when I would just sit and cry and those boys would hug me and say, “Mom, mom, remember Jesus is the one.” They would hug me and say, “He will help us; He will help us.”

I just went to the Word of God. You know, it lifted me up and still does.

Announcer: During this time God used Revive Our Hearts to get the Word of God into Maria's heart.

Maria: Without Revive Our Hearts, I don't think I would have made it. Because I didn't know how to do it. I needed someone tangible to teach me how to work, how to go 1-2-3, you know what I mean?

Announcer: Maria saw God answer prayer. She went back to her doctor and got a clean bill of health, no cervical cancer. She knew her sons needed to see God provide for them as well. She remembers them asking her . . ,

Maria: “What are we going to do without a daddy?” And I said, “I know that the stats are with Spanish woman with all these many kids, that you're all going to be criminals. But we're going to show the whole world that Jesus will not allow this in our family.

Announcer: Around this time, Nancy began teaching a series on Revive Our Hearts called “Seeking Him.” That series and the workbook that went with it came at just the right time.

Maria: I would picture myself going to Jesus, getting on my knees and saying, “This is what I have. And this is what's going on. Fill me up.” When we humble ourselves, we become candidates for the grace of God. He gives us everything we need. I put some money together, and I bought it. I bought eight or nine books.

Announcer: Around this time, Maria’s sons felt God calling them into music ministry. They invited their mom to come on the road with them and give counsel to the audience.

Maria: They said, “You come with us, and you mentor the girls. And that's what we did. You know, I traveled with them everywhere. I would minister to the girls.

Announcer: Maria brought those Seeking Him CDs and books with them on tour. Their family had a lot of time together to go through this Bible study.

Maria: We would do it in the car. As we were touring, going to different churches, we would study Seeking Him.

Announcer: Those six boys and their band members were looking for godly women today. They wanted Maria to teach Seeking Him to their potential spouses.

Maria: When they started dating, they asked me to do it with their girlfriends.

Announcer: Maria's investment had a huge impact on this family. They're still in ministry, and some of them are serving as pastors—a pastor in England and one pastors in California. and Maria's daughters-in-law are using resources from Revive Our Hearts to minister to women in their own churches.

And now Maria is investing in a new generation, as she and her grandchildren listen to Revive Our Hearts together.

Maria: The kids know about and remember the questions we heard earlier. These boys wondered how they could go through life without an earthly father. Now, we know the answer is been 20-some years ago, and they are standing.

Song: “Why don't you rescue me?”

Dannah: Wow, I have chills. If that does not give you a dose of hope and perspective this morning, call me. I'm need to come over and help you. That is some good stuff.

Listen, as I listened to that story, I'm just reminded that the facts of our life are not the truth of our life. Jesus is the truth of our life. He gets the final say, and He's had the final say for Marie Toros’ family.

And here with us today to talk just a little bit more about how that legacy is being lived out is Claire Toro. She's our guest joining us from the United Kingdom. She's an emergency medicine physician, and a wife of one of Marie Toros’ sons. Together, she and her husband have three beautiful girls. We've invited her here to tell us how one woman's faithfulness, Maria, has impacted the generations.

Hello, Claire, welcome to grounded.

Clare: Hi, Dannah. Thanks for having me.

Dannah: Well, you know, I am just so intrigued by your mother-in-law's story. First thing I have to ask you is, it sounds like her sons, including your husband . . . their mom discipled the girls into the kind of godly woman that raised them so they can have godly lives. Any truth to that?

Clare: Yeah, absolutely. I think so. I think she's just in it. Maria has just been so key in discipling me in my whole life after I met their family for the first time.

I was a believer as a Christian, but just really lacked that depth of knowledge of the Word and kind of that walk with the Lord. And I remember seeing something in their lives. I was like, “There's something about them that I don't have.” And I was like, “I want that. I want that.”

It'd be 16 years ago, when I the first met the family. And just the way that she's discipled me, has just been incredible. And just so key in my walk with the Lord. She encourages me as a mother-in-law and makes me want to rise up and disciple my daughter-in-law.

Dannah: One of the most poignant moments for me in the video we just saw was when your mother-in-law stated that as a as an Hispanic single mother, she knew the statistical risk of her boys becoming criminals. So I’ve got to ask, what career path did your husband end up choosing?

Clare: So my husband is a pastor. We are in the UK. He's the senior pastor of a small, kind of inner city church here in the UK. And yes, so he's definitely not a criminal. Yes, yay. Praise the Lord.

Dannah: Tell us a little bit about your family, because I want to hear how Maria's dreams and prayers of raising godly boys who built godly families, how is that being lived out in your family specifically.

Clare: And like I said, I met Maria and the boys when they were actually on a trip, a missions trip, essentially, to the UK. They were serving a kind of music ministry. It was around about a year before I started at medical school. So we, David, my husband, and I did had a long distance relationship for about four or five years before, eventually, the Lord allowed him to move to the UK for us to get married and continue to work. He took on being a pastor of our church. We've got three girls now who are eight, five, and two.

And I think just seeing Maria's dedication to the Word, and to see that through all the difficulties and all the trials that she went through, to see that passed on to the generation of her sons, and her daughter, and then from that my husband passing that on to the next generation to our three girls—three of 21 grandchildren.

So very much passing on to the next generation just that that deep love for the Word and for prayer. If you're just walking faithfully with the Lord, wow, what is this picture we're seeing?

Dannah: That is more than three daughters. That must be several of the grandchildren right there. Yeah, lots of them. What a legacy to pass on as a grandmother that encourages me, Maria, your mom. So what's the Scripture that you've been clinging to more recently to encourage you to be a godly mother.

Clare: I think particularly, recently, being been in the book of First and Second Peter. One Scripture that I've just yet really been clingy to, literally, for the last few days and weeks has been Second Peter chapter one, verse three: “His divine power has granted us all things that pertain to life and godliness through them through the knowledge of Him, who caught us to his own glory, and glory and excellence.”

I think just seeing that we have access to that divine power, but it's through the knowledge of Him, through the knowledge of the Word. And He's called us to His own glory and excellence.

I think just being a mom myself, and having, having that legacy to pass on to the next generation. You know, God has given us everything that we need for life and godliness. But the key thing is, we need His Word through the knowledge of Him, who's caught us to His own glory. And so, I just really encourage any other moms to cling to the Word because that's where we get the power, His divine power, that we need.

Dannah: It is where you get the divine power. And I can say, as a mother of adult children and a grandmother, you still need that power. You might think that it's gonna get easier. I tell you, it gets harder in a different kind of way. You need to tap into the power of God's Word, the power of God's Spirit, so that you can do it well.

Okay, one more thing. I want to ask of you, Claire. If you could speak to a mom today, one who like Maria, was way back at the beginning of her days as a single mom who's looking those statistics in the eye, and who feels really lonely this week as moms are being celebrated. Maybe she is fearful of the future. What would you tell her to encourage her.

Clare: I think if there's one thing that I remember that Maria taught me really early on, was this one phrase that she said, “Lord, make me willing to be willing to do Your will.”

The will of God may not be necessarily be what we want. And the Lord may have you in a situation today that you didn't plan, that was not part of the story that you wanted to write in your life. But clinging to the Lord. And keep praying for your children, reading them the Word. Because I think from her example, we see you never know what that's gonna do. The Lord can take the tiny thing that we have and multiply it just so incredibly for His glory. Because you know, you're our influence that we have on our own children. That just has so, so much more of a far-reaching effect than we can possibly imagine. Because the Lord can do it through His power.

Dannah: Wow, I am so blessed by you, Claire. You are the proof in the pudding, that when we trust the Lord to write our story, no matter what it looks like, and we stay in the Word, that the fruit of our lives can be beautiful. The fruit of you, Claire, is beautiful. Make me willing to be willing to do Your will, Lord. Thank you for sharing that with us today. Claire, you've been a blessing.

Clare: Thank you for having me. It's been a blessing to me too.

Erin: Well, it's time to go ahead. I was gonna say, well, it's time to get grounded in God's Word. She told us the claim to our Bibles, and that's exactly what we're gonna do. We're not just going to talk about it.

Hey, maybe this is your first time watching grounded? If so, you need to tell us you're here, because we get really excited when people are watching for the first time. But we always need to have our Bibles handy when we're watching Grounded.

This morning, we're going to be in the Psalms. I have a friend who loves to tell the story, and I love to hear the story. It's a great story. She says, I only heard my mom yell once. What a mom! And that mom in the middle of a lot of chaos. She had several kids. She stopped, and she yelled this. “Will somebody please call me Sue.” It had been too long since that woman had heard her own name. She just heard, “Mom, Mom, Mom, Mama, Mommy.” And so in the middle of that, she stopped and she yelled that she wanted to hear the sound of her own name again. I love that story. It cracks me up. Every mom can relate.

I was talking with a grandma recently. She said this to me. “You lose your identity when you get married. And then you spend the most of your life being someone's mom, and someone's grandma.” And there was some resentment in her words. I wonder if you feel like that. If you feel like it's been too long since you've heard the sound of your own name, or thought about your own hobbies, or spent some time by yourself. Maybe you feel lost in caring for others. And maybe if you're honest, you resent it.

Well, let's claim to our Bibles. Let's get some hope and perspective when those feelings creep in. We're going to be in Psalm 128 this morning.

Now, Psalm 127 is probably going to be read for many pulpits on Sunday. Verse three tells us children are a blessing, a heritage from the Lord. And that is a good Mother's Day verse. But Psalm 128 tells us the reason why. I'm going to read us the whole song. Don't worry. It's just six short verses. And it goes like this.


Blessed is everyone who fears the Lord,
  who walks in his ways!
You shall eat the fruit of the labor of your hands;
  you shall be blessed, and it shall be well with you.

Your wife will be like a fruitful vine
  within your house;
your children will be like olive shoots
  around your table.
Behold, thus shall the man be blessed
  who fears the Lord.

The Lord bless you from Zion!
  May you see the prosperity of Jerusalem
all the days of your life!
  May you see your children's children!
Peace be upon Israel!

Now, I love this passage. It gives us a beautiful word picture of the family. It says your wife will be a fruitful vine and your children will be like olive shoots around your table now.

I live in Missouri, not the Mediterranean. So we might miss the word picture here of what the psalmist is telling us our families can be like. Let's transport ourselves to the Mediterranean for just a moment. Here is an olive tree. In fact, this particular olive tree is 2500 years old. Yep, you heard me right, this tree is 2500 years old. It would have been just a sapling when Jesus walks the earth.

I want you to pay attention to that olive tree. Look at the base of that tree. There's those little olive trees at the base, their tree babies. Those baby shoots grow out of the root system around olive trees. It's not just olive trees that do this. I have an orchard here on my farm. And my peach trees and my apple trees do the same thing. They have tree babies at their base.

But olive trees are unique. In apple trees and peach trees, we have to remove those tree babies, and we have to root them and plant them somewhere else. But the olive tree, the mother shares her soil. She shares her water. She certainly shares her personal space which every mother can relate to. But those little olive trees, they don't rob the mother tree of her nutrients. They don't steal her water. They don't suck the mother tree dry. That mature olive tree, that mother tree, she becomes surrounded by a healthy band of successors.

They actually graft into her trunk and become one tree. It's an image of new life. It's an image of growth of productivity. The olive tree that the psalmist talks about here in Psalm 128, it's a picture of legacy.

What is our mission moms? That's an important question for us to wrestle with every single day. It's not to get the laundry done. It's not to minimize fussing. It's not just to raise good kids, or to be a fun grandma. That's not the reason that we were put on the earth. We were put on the earth for the same reason the olive tree was to bring God glory, to praise His great name—to make disciples who make disciples who make disciples who make disciples. And the primary way we do that is through our families.

Here's a newsflash for your Monday morning. We're all disappearing. We are every day that passes where you are one day closer to the day when either Jesus returns for all of us, or more likely, Jesus takes us home, one by one through death. Scripture tells us outwardly we're wasting away, but inwardly we're being renewed day by day. That is our Monday morning reality. But we're also surrounded by a healthy band of successors. Who, yes, require our energy. And who, yes, forget, we have a first name.

I once was in school; I think I was a first grader. It was parent day. This is a joke in our family. We were supposed to introduce our parents. My dad came with me, and I very proudly stood up and said, “This is my father. His name is Dad.”

He signed all the cards to me for the rest of my life. Father, Dad. I didn't know his name was Tom. I was totally oblivious that he had a first name. He had an identity that didn't have to do with me. And that's part of being parents, isn't it? It's part of being people.

But those, those baby trees, those children in our lives, they're going to outlast us. They are going to continue the mission that God has given us. And that's the mission to tell the world about him and that it's not a burden.

It's a blessing to get to share our time and energy and resources with those saplings that the Lord has surrounded us with. So what word does Psalm 128 use over and over and over and over? If you're writing your Bible girl, I always tell you, I hope you are, then circle the word “blessed.” It's in there a whole bunch of times.

Because what the psalmist is telling us is that it is a tremendous blessing, not a burden. That's why Psalm 127 tells us children are a blessing. It's not because they're not rascals—they can be. But it's a tremendous blessing to be able to nurture the next generation, that well, we fade away. They become grafted into the trunk, and they give God glory. So in honor of Mother's Day, I know we're early, but we don't do grounded on Sundays.

By the time I see you again, Mother's Day will be over. In honor of Mother's Day. I'm going to read Psalm 128 as a blessing over you as a blessing over our families this morning.

Blessed is everyone who fears the Lord,
  who walks in his ways!
You shall eat the fruit of the labor of your hands;
  you shall be blessed, and it shall be well with you.

Your wife will be like a fruitful vine
  within your house;
your children will be like olive shoots
  around your table.
Behold, thus shall the man be blessed
  who fears the Lord.

The Lord bless you from Zion!
  May you see the prosperity of Jerusalem
all the days of your life!
  May you see your children's children!
Peace be upon Israel!

Portia Alejandra, let's give them the good stuff. I'm saying the same thing like Erin.

Portia: This teaching was such a blessing to me. So thank you. Well, you, you guys know that we cannot say goodbye on grounded without giving you the good stuff. And the good stuff is the tools to help you stay grounded in God's Word each week.

Alejandra: That's right. So if you think or if you feel that your motherhood skills, right, Portia, our motherhood skills need a little oiling or polishing, we have something really good for you.

So we want to recommend this 30-day mom make over challenge. I think in our motherhood, we do need sometimes a little makeover that point says back to that moment. You know how to handle your child while you're trying to do it.

So it's free. It's an online resource that you can find and Revive Our Hearts can help you see your role as a mom as a great blessing. It's also available in Spanish. So if you know someone that speaks Spanish, point them right to that. It could be a really good Mother's Day gift or a good father challenge. So we're going to drop the link here, and you can connect to that.

Portia: We always have a little card laying around. Why don't we just write a card for our mom. You can write a little note and encourage your mom, your grandma, or your neighbor, any mom around you. Just say, “I was thinking of you. Be encouraged. God is with you.”

What I'd love to see is writing a note to a single mom like Maria, and just really encourage her. Moms are being so encouraged today.

Michelle wrote, “This program gives me so much hope for my own family.” And Sheila wrote, “What a wonderful program today. Well, they always are.” Wow. And then she writes, “Makes me willing to be willing to do Your will.” Gonna write that out and pray it. I hope you do. I got to share one more comment. It's a text that I got. It's my mom who's watching, and she sent me the happy, tearful joy emoji. You know, that one just wrote. “I love you.” I love you too, Mom.

One more viewer I want us to hear from today. She didn't text me, and she didn't make a comment. But Alejandra, I'm so burdened that you haven't seen your mom for so long. I feel like we need to start this Mother's Day week out with a blessing for you. So your mom is here with us today.

Hello, Ada.

Alejandra: Where is she?

Portia: I don't see her. I don't see her there. She she's supposed to be there. Maybe there are technical difficulties. Oh, no. Oh, no. You know how mother's things go.

Alejandra: I haven't seen her in so long. We talk all the time and she's seeing the grandkids all the time. But that hug that embrace that love . . . I certainly miss that. I think she's here.

Portia: Tell her to turn your camera on, because I don't know that in Spanish. There we go. Is she is?

Alejandra: It's so good to see you and to see the work that the Lord has done in your life. That's what she just said

Ada: I see how you love God to work.

Portia: Oh, I can hear the tenderness in your mom's voice. I can hear her just on the verge of tears, exploding with love for you. And we just pray that soon the travel restrictions are lifted and you can be in one another's arms.

Alejandra: Wow, thank you Grounded team. This was a true surprise.

Motherhood . . . it's sweet in every language, isn't it? I

Erin: It is. It’s more than a Mother's Day. It’s beens a good program today. I don't know about you, but I am excited about next week's episode.

Portia: How do we pronounce the name of our guests, Erin? I think it's Brenda Jank.

Erin: She is going to be talking about something that we all need to hear about . . . margin and how we restore it in our lives. So I can't wait. It's gonna be a great episode. That's sort of a fitting follow up to Mother's Day celebration.

Well, let's wake up with hope together next Monday on Grounded.

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About the Guest

Clare Toro

Clare Toro

Clare Toro is a wife, mom of 3 and an Emergency Medicine physician, but mostly a disciple of Jesus and relying on Him every day. Clare is married to Dave, the senior pastor of a small inner city church, and they live in the UK.

About the Hosts

Erin Davis

Erin Davis

Erin Davis is an author, blogger, and speaker who loves to see women of all ages run to the deep well of God’s Word. She is the author of many …

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Portia Collins

Portia Collins

Portia Collins is a Christian Bible teacher and writer/blogger who enjoys studying and teaching Scripture.  Portia is the founder of "She Shall Be Called" (SSBC), a women’s ministry centered on …

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Dannah Gresh

Dannah Gresh

When Dannah Gresh was eight years old, she began praying that God would use her as a Bible teacher for “the nations.” When she sees the flags of many countries …

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Alejandra Slemin

Alejandra Slemin

Alejandra is a sinner who believed in Jesus at the age of seven in her native country, Dominican Republic. She is a wife and homeschool mom. She's passionate about Christ, …

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