Sure you want to become a mother?

Sure you want to become a mother?  Here are some numbers you may want to crunch before you decide!  Statistics released this week in the latest Newsweek magazine reveal that the first two years of a new baby’s life will cost $32,000.  And if you’re wanting more than one child, you can plan on an added $24,000 for each additional child.  Just for their first two years of moving into your heart and home!

And what will it cost to raise that little cherub to the age of 18?  Newsweek reports that over those eighteen years a middle-class family will spend an average of $190,980, not including college or lost wages from a parent who remains at home.  Per child.  Add the costs of college and the lost wages of that parent who stayed at home, and the estimated cost from infancy to age eighteen skyrockets to $1,589,793! Still sure you want to be a mom?

Average stay-at-home mothers (what’s an average mom?) work 92 hours a week in their mothering (is anybody surprised?).  If you took her “homework” and parceled it out into the various jobs/tasks that she performs each week, she should be earning (based on the median national salary for the categories of labor she provides) a whopping $138,095 a year!  As Newsweek quips, “Sure, the validation is purely symbolic, but it may come as some solace at a time when stay-at-home moms are being taken to task in the new book ‘The Feminine Mistake’ for giving up the financial independence their [women’s rights] mothers fought so hard to win” (5-14-07 Newsweek).

Are you a mom or a mother-wanna-be?  There’s an old, dusty Book that sits on American shelves across the land this Mother’s Day.  And in that Book the Author makes certain the genuine value of a godly mother is clearly portrayed.  “She watches over the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness.  Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: ‘Many daughters have done well, but you excel them all.’”  And then the wisest man who ever lived adds this summation:  “Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing, but a woman who fears the LORD, she shall be praised.” (Proverbs 31:27-30)

And so to all our mothers and moms, I know I express the sentiments of a grateful nation and church when on this Mother’s Day we rise up and indeed call you “Blessed.”   For you are truly the gift of God to us all.

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