The Importance of Mother-Daughter Relationships


The Importance of Mother-Daughter Relationships via Tirzah Magazine

The relationship between moms and daughters is vitally important to changing the world for the better. The things older women can teach younger females have a dramatic impact on each of them and those they come in contact with in their lives.

We - women - can change the world for the better. We just need to choose to believe.

I'd like to speak to you as a mom; a mom who prayed about this very thing from the time her daughter was born. I had seen a few generations go silent, on most issues, between parents and children. Then I saw a generation of “I want my children to have more than I did,” and that hasn't worked either. I knew I wanted to do something different as a mother. I knew I wanted to do something Godly.

My 20-year-old has grown into such an amazing woman of God that people have often asked me through the years, "How and what did you do?" They saw their own generations collapse to the world, and they were watching the newest generations not only succumbing to it but promoting it.

To answer that is to provide an answer to the changes needed, and I am so honored to bring this series to Tirzah readers, with my daughter, Emerson. A series that will answer the many questions that moms and daughters - the daughters of God - have on their hearts. This series will address several topics within the realm of parent/child relationships. We look forward to your questions along the way as well.


You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. -Deuteronomy 6:5

Heather (mother):

This command seems easy. After all, most believers really love God. They view God as the Father He is and that is what He wants. But most leave it right there. They don't practice or teach that actions we take as Christians also speak greatly to that Love for the Father. We must Love outward in our actions.

Respect is largely taught and learned, yet the God-given moral instincts we all have, even before giving our lives to Christ, surface almost immediately in toddlers. As a response to someone they love, they often share their snacks for instance. I recall my daughter reacting this way even before she could understand the more complicated nature of respecting others. Honing in on that natural instinct to pay close attention to others and to be giving, I began to teach her cause and reaction, consequences, and caring about others feelings at that very young age. Toddlers understand more than we realize, if only by repetition.

Since I have talked to her about God, literally from my pregnancy on, she understood that there was a Heavenly Father who loved her at a very early age. I left no opportunity unused to teach her about God, that God cared for her and others, and that caring for others is one beautiful response to that love. Love God. Love others. It is the principle concept of a wrapped up New Testament, and so it is in our lives because we choose to follow that directive from Christ. But we must choose it. Teaching our children to respect God goes hand in hand with loving God.

Emerson (daughter):

Looking back, I'd have to say that one of the most important things that I was taught was respect. I think it's incredibly important for parents to teach their kids respect, especially since, sadly, it is hard to find it in today's world. While society seems to look at it as more of a “Be nice to people and don't judge them because they might get offended” sort of thing, I learned what respect is actually about and why it's important. Respect isn't just about not offending people – in fact, that perspective is only concerned with “keeping the peace” so to speak, instead of what it should be - acknowledging the value of another person.

[pullquote width="300" float="left"]Respect is acknowledging the value of another person.[/pullquote]

The other thing I learned is that it's really hard to truly respect others if you don't respect yourself and see your own worth. You won't be able to truly respect yourself if you don't understand how God sees you and made you. So, the key to learning how to respect yourself and others is learning to respect God and His will. In order to respect God and his commands, you have to really understand why He put those commands there in the first place. Is it just because He wanted to take all the fun out of life, or is it because He wanted to protect us from the things that only He could know were going to happen? After all, He is the Designer and Creator of all things, so I think He must have some pretty good reasons for doing things the way that He does, even if we don't understand them all now. When you begin to understand that, you begin to understand why God is completely worthy of your respect and honor.


Do you not know that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you? ~ 1 Corinthians 3:16


A big reason for why some people don't respect others is because they don't respect themselves. It's hard to appreciate other people and their contributions to the world when you don't appreciate your own. In particular, insecurity can make a lot of people act disrespectfully towards others. If you have a negative perspective of yourself, then it can be easy to take out those feelings on anyone within range.

Comparing yourself to others is probably one of the biggest causes for self-disrespect. For example, a girl who doesn't think she is pretty will likely seek approval from others, especially from a guy. In order to be noticed, she may chose to present herself and act in such a way that is very disrespectful to herself. This choice may also cause her to show disrespect towards her parents or even towards her friends, especially other girls who can be perceived as “competition,” in an effort to mask her own insecurity and appear to be “mature” enough to make her own decisions – which in fact aren't really her own decisions due to the reality that she is only making these choices based on what society tells her that she has to be in order to impress others. In the end, she ends up going off of her own emotions at the time instead of basing her decisions off of the truth that she is a unique individual with value. Our feelings and emotions can make irrational things seem rational in the moment, so we need to be aware of those times in order to not fall into the trap of disrespect.


You are His beloved. Be Loved.

In the moment He made you, God never had in mind for you to compare yourself to another being He created. He knew you in the womb. YOU. He loved you from that moment. You are unique.

We forget we were made to be loved. We must recognize our self-worth comes from God. It does not come from the world, nor does it come from our feelings about ourselves or others when we are dragged down. And self-respect certainly doesn't come from our mistakes, even those corrected, nor our major failures or even our triumphs and accomplishments. Our self-respect and self-worth comes from God our Father. The Father who created us to BE LOVED.


Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. - Philippians 2:3


Teaching my daughter to respect God and herself based on her value coming from the Father encouraged her to respect others. While it is hard sometimes to stay within that will of the Father when others choose to treat us badly, it is still a choice. Even if we fail in a situation, that does not change the fact that God loves and forgives us. Jesus, as man and God, taught us to love others. We can truly love others if we respect them as God-created and beloved human beings.


It's important that parents teach their children about self-respect because the world is very loud, and the usual message that we hear from society is basically to do whatever you can to reach the top. I see this message a great deal in the arts, for instance. Think about all the singers speaking, particularly to girls, about how you have control over your own body and how you can use your body to control and manipulate others in to getting what you want. That's seen as power, but they actually don't see their own value. And, because of that, it is obvious that they don't respect others.

"A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another." -John 13:34-35

This message of power is embraced soundly by the world. That is why it is important that you know what your worth as a person is as well as your boundaries, otherwise it will be difficult to tune out the world's megaphone. The saying goes “treat others the way you want to be treated,” but it can be hard to do that when we don't even treat ourselves in a way that we would want others to treat us.


Heather and Emerson welcome your questions regarding mother-daughter relationships as part of this ongoing series for Tirzah Magazine (just use the contact box on the right sidebar or send an email to tirzahmag{at} Upcoming topics include:

  • Health care from a Christian family perspective
  • How a mother's language, demeanor, and perspective of her own self-image affects her daughter's self-image
  • How a mother's perspective of men can directly affect a daughter's view of men and her future husband, and
  • The influence of media on a Christian family

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