I’m That Spy Mom
by Shauna Wallace
The date night ended in a disappointing conclusion, and it was all because my daughter’s friend misunderstood something my husband said before they left the house. In the next few moments, our distraught daughter returned to the house trembling and crying! When she explained what happened, we immediately insisted she go get the young man to come back to the house so we could clear it up. As the evening progressed they sat talking in the driveway, but it was taking forever! I couldn’t stand the suspense! I was wondering what in the world was going on and if everything was okay?
That’s when I said, “THAT’S IT”, and I announced to my husband…
“I’m going to see what’s happening!”
I snuck out my back door, crept stealthily around the back of the house, and tucked myself behind a shrub-covered wall convinced I was concealed. When I could see everything was fine, I slinked back through the door, gave my report to James, and we waited.
When the kids came back beaming, we knew all was well, but she had a question for me:
“Mom, were you spying on us?”
Now that’ll put a mom in an awkward situation! Do I deny it? Do I admit it? Because let’s be real, the only reason the kid is asking is that I’m busted!
“Well… As a matter of fact…FINE! I was! But only because I wanted to make sure that everything was OK!”
The thing that made it extra embarrassing is that her friend is the one who said, “Hey, is that your mom spying on us?”
We had a good laugh, but is it okay to spy on our kids? Over the years I’ve had a lot of conversations with moms like me who want to keep a watchful eye on our kids, but we don’t always know how much is too much. I’m here to tell you, the Bible gives us mamas permission to spy!
Proverbs 31:27 says, “She watches over the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness.”
The phrase watches over literally means to be a spy, giving us biblical authority to be secret intelligence agents in our homes and families. Metaphorically speaking, we are to be well-trained, highly alert operatives who survey people and places, collect information, check sources, evaluate data, and conduct covert missions for the well-being and security of our families and homes.
We’re the female version of “Big Brother is watching,” with eyes and ears everywhere. It’s our job to know what’s important and what’s not; what’s a distraction and what’s not; who or what is shaping their values; what serves God and what works against everything He’s trying to do in our lives and families; what we need to say “No” to and what’s worthy of our time, investment, husbands, and children.
It can be exhausting, especially with the pressure to be involved in all the right activities with all the right people multiplied by the number of people in our households, but we must be committed to actively monitoring who is where, doing what, saying what, and with whom, assessing and neutralizing threats, especially with the constant onslaught of electronic temptations and the perversion and dangers that lurk therein.
We need to be intercepting and cracking code by watching expressions, body language, interactions, and reactions. Like when a child says, “That’s okay,” when the family declines their invitation to play games together, but walks away with their head down and tears welling in their eyes. Or “Nothing’s wrong,” really means everything’s wrong. Maybe your normally happy pre-teen or teen is abnormally sullen or withdrawn, or food is being fingered but not eaten. Perhaps their social media world has become more important or exciting than real life, or you’re seeing more of your kid’s closed bedroom door than their face.
Sometimes, our work is clandestine, perhaps alone or with others who have the expertise, intelligence, or tools we need to effectively diffuse threats. Other times, we need to be busting down doors and taking situations by surprise in order to rescue our loved ones from danger.
Either way, there’s no room for sluggishness, laziness, or turning a blind eye. It doesn’t take terminal negligence for Satan to get a foothold in our family, just a tad bit of idleness will do, “because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour”(1 Peter 5:8). He never takes a break, and neither can we.
We are the CIA: Concern in Action. We can’t be tuned out or distracted with our own lives and have little or no idea what’s going on in theirs. We can’t allow ourselves to become too stressed or exhausted to have what it takes to care that moment, that day, or that season of their lives.
So how do we carry out this mission impossible?
- Maintain constant communication with the Director of Intelligence: God Himself, who is everywhere all the time and whose eyes “are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good”(Proverbs 15:3).
- Cast or literally throw our cares, burdens, and anxieties upon the Lord, our strength and shield (2 Samuel 22:3), because He cares for us, sustains us, and never allows the righteous to be shaken or overthrown (I Peter 5:7, Psalms 55:22).
- Pray, for “the effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much”(James 5:16), and ask for wisdom, for “if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him”(James 1:5).
- Trust the Lord, whose eyes “are on the righteous, and His ears are open to their prayers; but the face of the LORD is against those who do evil”(1 Peter 3:12).
- Remember, with God, nothing is impossible (Luke 1:37).
Much love and many blessings,
Women are drawn to Shauna’s teaching and Bible studies because of her in-depth yet conversational and practical approach to scripture’s truths as they apply to the nitty-gritty of daily life. The more she studies the Bible, the greater her grasp of God’s grace and love and the deeper her passion to see others experience the power and freedom of surrendering entirely to Him. She is a wife, mother and working woman who gladly and transparently connects with women wherever they are by sharing the good, bad and challenging of her life story, past, and present. Learn more at www.shaunawallace.com.