About the Author

Michelle Reyes, Ph.D., is an Indian American pastor’s wife, writer, and activist. She is also the Vice President of the Asian American Christian Collaborative and writes regularly on faith, culture, and justice. Michelle lives in Austin, TX with her husband and two kids. Follow her on IG @michelleamireyes.

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  1. Michelle,

    I greatly appreciate your sentiments about full-time moms such as myself. Valuing my ministry as a “stay-at-home” mom is something I struggle with and is something God has been working with me on. The first part of your message was exactly what I needed to hear today, thank you.

    I was to say this as kindly as I can…I love that incourage is partnering with this ministry. But that does not mean that every reader is meant to contribute to this cause. Sadly, by adding on this call to action from other full time moms, you may have undermined your original message about the value of the work we do. I understand that was more than likely not your intent.

    It came across as “you ARE serving God, Mama, keep up the work for God’s Kingdom, even if you feel like you aren’t doing enough but don’t forget to do this other work too.” Financial generosity is so important and is so valuable to teach our children, so I am sure there are many moms out there who will be called to serve in this way.

    For me, I (joyfully) left my well-paying full time job to devote myself to my kids and my family, and I really needed to hear the first part of your message today. But I also am being led to show my kids how generosity is not just about generosity with finances. It’s sometimes about the money you give up to spend time with those you love. It’s about being generous with our time or our words when a friend is going through a trial and my kids get to serve alongside me as I talk with that friend or as they have to play by themselves so I can send an encouraging email. It’s about following God, His leading, and the work He wants me to do. And that might look different than the mom next to me.

    Thank you for your message, for your heart for this charity, and for your kind understanding.

    • Sarah, I am so thankful for what you said and that you took the way less traveled to come home for your children! You will NEVER REGRET IT and your children will be THE BETTER, and the Lord will bless you and you will have the reassurance that you did the best for them ~ and what the Lord really wanted for His High Calling of Motherhood for your life!!! And you are an example for other Christian Mothers, so needed in this day and age.
      Blessings to you as you serve the Lord and your family in this way!

    • Dear Sarah,

      Thanks so much for taking the time to gather around the (in)courage table not only to read today’s post but to thoughtfully engage in the conversation. I love the examples you gave about how serving God and others can take on many different forms, and how those are all opportunities to model and teach our kids about generosity. Yes! I’m right there with you.

      I’m sorry you felt like the invitation to support our partnership with Mercy House undermined Michele’s opening message. While the opportunity to give in this particular way may not have resonated with you this morning–which is completely fine!–we have already heard from hundreds of women over the last week that this IS the invitation that they’ve been waiting for to make a tangible difference in the life of another woman and God’s kingdom.

      Just like there will be women who read this post and say, I’m not a mother so this doesn’t hit the mark for me, I’m so grateful that Michele’s encouragement was meaningful to you. Thank you for being part of this community that speaks truth and shows grace.

      With gratitude,

      Becky Keife
      (in)courage Community Manager

    • Hey there, Sarah, I really appreciate your comments. And I completely agree that finances is not an integral part to missions. I’m a stay-at-home mom myself. My husband and I are church planters and, quite honestly, according to “American standards” we are quite poor so giving money is not something we can do quite often, anyways. I’m sorry if you felt that I was conveying the message that you have to give money to be a mother on mission. My intent was simply to highlight some of the options available to us at home. I talked about our children as our mission field first because that is of utmost importance. I think we can also be missional neighbors too and I’ve written about that here at (in)courage in terms of opening up our homes as missional spaces to fellow families, mothers and children in our neighborhood. Being a mother on mission can also mean just sharing the gospel with the people you cross paths with, whether its at the grocery story, library or park. In many ways, the possibilities are endless. I simply wanted to highlight one more way that is possible/open/accessible to mothers at home and that includes supporting other mommas in need globally. I was personally touched by the stories of the mothers in Kenya, fighting to survive and protect their children. I want to pray for them and help them financially when I can, but the key phrase here is “as I can”. I hope that helps explain some of my heart for this post and why I went in the direction that I did. But I’m grateful for your critical eye and your loving encouragement too. Thanks, Sarah.

  2. Great cause but all I was hoping for was my morning devotional – not to be hit up for $$ first thing in the morning.

    • Dear Jess,

      Thanks so much for being part of the (in)courage community! It sounds like you enjoy our daily devotionals. That means so much to us. Truly. In the spirit of community and doing life together in a small way through the gift of the Internet, we will occasionally offer opportunities to link arms as sisters in Christ and put our faith in action. We understand that an invitation to partner with Mercy House won’t be the right fit or the right timing for everyone. But it certainly is for some. I’m excited to think about the women in Kenya and around the world whose lives will be changed because of the jobs Mercy House will be able to create through the funding raised by #1000mercies. May we be women who champion and celebrate the work the Lord is doing even when it interrupts our regular rhythms.

      With joy,
      Becky Keife
      (in)courage Community Manager

    • Hey Jess, thanks for reading and commenting. I hear what you’re saying. I included the information about Mercy House because it’s a cause that I believe in and that (in)courage believes in. I want to stand in solidarity with other mothers around the world and, one way to do this is to raise awareness to the plight of these mommas in Kenya. This is a good theological perspective to keep in mind – that we as mothers can and should link arms with other mothers around the world. We are not demanding money of anyone. If you do not feel led to give financially, that is fine. We would covet your prayers though, for these mommas and their children, that they may come to faith, that God will draw people to himself in Kenya and advance the kingdom there. Thanks again.

  3. This is such an important lesson today, thank you so much Michelle! I am 70 y/o and was saved in my mid thirties after we had our first child. I devoured everything in books and Christian radio about being wife and Mom. Motherhood was revered and was encouraged as one of our top roles, 2nd only to being God’s child and wife. The sources I read and heard all supported, applauded Biblical Christian Motherhood, encouraging us with verses and ideas to help our children know and love the Lord and to spend time with nurturing and bonding with our precious children. That foundation, examples and relationship formed during these early years are of utmost importance for the child’s future relationship to the Lord and their life-long perspective about themselves and others.. “Am I worthy for my Mom to spend time with me, doing things with me, showing me, helping me to learn about God, others, myself? Can I be
    competent, learning how to do things well and told I am doing a good job? Where do I belong? Do I belong in this family with my parents, or am I just a bother to be shoved in another room alone for hours or somewhere else away from my Mom?” ( Dads are so super important too and need time with Dad,) I am sad that so many young mothers do not have your Biblical perspective and believe that they have to work to be fulfilled and that is more important than the time with their children. And today much teaching is on juggling a job and just the bare ” have-to’s” of being a Mother. There is such JOY in being a Mother especially of young children, their wonder and excitement in experiencing and learning so many good things. Many Moms miss this and you can never get these years back.. Many Mothers would be less stressed and more fulfilled if they would not allow themselves to be pulled in so many directions.
    We need more teaching like your lesson today!

    • Hc, thanks for this beautiful encouragement. My three boys are all in school now, but I’m so grateful I had the opportunity to stay home with them during the little years. Seeing the world through their eyes of wonder was life-changing for me. Much love to you today. So grateful to have you at the (in)courage table.

    • I too am a working mother, grandmother & great-grandmother. In hind site the most important mission I could do for the kingdom of heaven was to realize when I was a young mother that raising Godly children was my God given mission. I spent many years wondering why God blessed me with such a large family, I finally understood that my family is my mission field and it continues for generations. Think of all the lives you touch when you teach your children, grandchildren & great-grandchildren about God and his kingdom. I so wish someone had told me early on that being a Godly mom was the most important job I would ever do. I have always been a working mom so I know how difficult juggling can be but moms find the time to each your children so you won’t live in regret. Older moms mentor the young moms around you so they will understand before their precious time with their little ones has passed.

  4. I have throughly enjoyed this devotional each and every morning for some time and I certainly would love to donate to The Mercy House in Kenya. What a pleasure this is for me. Thank you for these daily devotions that come to me each and every morning. I would like to donate $100. Please.

  5. Michelle,

    Why is it that well meaning Christians tear each other apart? We tend to take the Bible literally & out of context. Matthew 28:19 does say Go and make disciples of all nations. God also said to be fruitful & multiply. Which means someone has to stay home & raise Godly Children. That is a missions all its own. Matthew 25:40 states:T truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ It doesn’t say you must only go overseas-just do something anything for someone less fortunate. God gives different gifts to everyone. He knows everyone can’t fly overseas & be a missionary. We need local missionaries as well. Cities have homeless & helpless, elderly, etc. Young children are taken from parents & need a place to stay, elderly neighbors need someone to visit & talk. My list could go on. There are things you can do right in your own home town. Give food to less fortunate for Thanksgiving, make fruit baskets for elderly, work with Relay for Life to help fund Cancer research. This Christmas I will take my neighbor a fruit basket, get an Angel tree gift for elderly person, cook for my in-laws. Each act of kindness is your way of showing Christ’s love to others & helping to make disciples. Moms your work never ends. Do your best to raise Godly Children-teaching them about God & Heaven. God bless you all moms!!

    Blessings 🙂

    • Thank you, Beth, for your encouraging words. God certainly does give different gifts to different people, and it’s important to know that we, as mommas, play an integral role in the body of Christ. I love your ideas too, especially with inviting people over for Thanksgiving and bringing gift baskets to neighbors. I’m going to try doing something like that with my neighbors this year. Thanks for the inspiration!

  6. Michelle thank you for these words and for bringing this opportunity to party with Mercy House to the table! I think this is amazing. Will make a donation soon! 🙂

    I love what you said… “ for we, too, have been given the opportunity to share the gospel every day with the tiny hands and feet and growing hearts that surround us, and that is awesome.” Some days I forget that I am sharing Jesus and living out the gospel by being a mama to my boys. Loving them the way God loves me… thank you for sweet, needed reminder.

    We are all mission mamas!
    All of His best to you,

    Becky

    • By the way… it’s supposed to say partner with Mercy House, not PARTY! Lol. (Thanks again, Autocorrect…) Although, it’s totally a celebration to empower other mamas, right?! Ha.

    • Thanks, Becky! Grateful for your words and your support. My 3-yr-old had a very public meltdown just earlier today and I was having to remind myself again about being a momma on mission and how I needed to show him Christ in that moment (instead of just losing it). This is such a good reminder for all of us mommas daily on how we can share the gospel with our children in the smallest and seemingly mundane moments. (And I also liked the idea of “partying” with Mercy House!)

      • Three year old meltdowns are fierce… I have three boys: 7, 3 and 2. And I tell ya, when they break down, it is hard to not lose my cool too. Thanks for your reminder in the hard moments as well.

        Glad you like to “party” with Mercy House too! Ha!

  7. Beautiful message, Michelle! My daughter is now 27, but to this day I believe, “Being her mom is the BEST job God ever gave me!” Though I’m not in the midst of parenting now, I vividly recall the doubts that come to mind. Thank you for sharing a message all moms need to hear. No matter our season of life, we’re all the wiser if we remember that being a mother is one of the most important and impactful roles God will ever entrust us with. Loving, nurturing, and teaching our children is definitely the mission God calls us to carry out as moms:) When we do that well, we build a foundation of faith in our children and arm them with the tools to carry out their mission for God as they grow and mature. I love being a mom so I’m honored to partner with (in)courage and Mercy House in #1000 mercies to support women and moms in Kenya!