I read the words that I believe are going to help me make them better. He gave me these children, and as if He does not know, I spout, “See, this is what is wrong with them. Help me so I can fix them.” But as I’m reading this book, looking for the statements that will tell me what to do to fix them, my eyes are opened to my own reflection. I should have known by the title,
I read words that go deep, wanting to close my eyes to the dark places of my soul, I did not even know were still there, but I do not hide from what I see. See. I must, and let His light shine in the darkness where no sin can hide. I read these words that reveal the truth. I have been the source of the problem for the difficulties that I have been facing, and I have blamed them.
They each face their own challenges in the different stages of their lives, that stretch me more than I knew I could. I want to help them navigate their way through. Teenager daughter, almost 18, soon will spread her wings. Preteen, 12 year old daughter, need I say more? My only boy, not even 10, but is my most sensitive one who is gifted with his hands but is struggling with reading. Toddler girl, almost 2, who has us ALL on our toes. Plus, all of their educational needs.
In those places where I may be physically present but mentally and emotionally elsewhere, and a misadventure jolts me back to now, my burst of exasperation leaves them confounded.
“You can be so calm and then get so crazy,” my preteen boldy shares.
I endeavor to justify and explain away my reactions. I feel like I’m divided into 4 mamas sometimes and there is not much left of me at the end of some of our days. So I read so I can grow and gain insight to help them grow. But in Godlike fashion, He’s not interested in telling me how I can fix another. He gently reminds me I cannot even fix myself.
Only crazy people would think they could complete by their own efforts what was begun by God. If you weren’t smart enough or strong enough to begin it, how do you suppose you could perfect it?…Does the God who lavishly provides you with His own Presence, His Holy Spirit, working things in your lives you could never do for yourselves, does He do these things because of your strenuous moral striving or because you trust Him to do them in you?
I read the words that reveal the truth, and this truth sets me free. I am letting it settle down deep and walking in His grace. It is not their young developing lives pressing on me that brings me to exasperation. They have no defense against my weaknesses revealed by their mistakes and mishaps. The kids are messy, but the mess they are exposing is my own. How soon I forget, but He does not relent, and I do not contend with Him. My prayers, He is answering.
Help me show them grace.
Help me cultivate a home where mistakes
are celebrated for the great lessons we can learn from them.
Help me respond in love and not react in frustration.
Help me discover new and beautiful things in my husband and children.
Give me eyes that will see what You see,
so that I can help draw out their potential,
ignite their passion and foster their growth for Your glory.
Help me be their biggest cheerleader and Help me parent like You parent, Abba.
Help me show them they are Your own handiwork, Your workmanship, Your masterpiece recreated in Christ, that they may do those good works which You planned beforehand for them, taking paths which You prepared ahead of time, that they should walk in them.