I know that if you had it to do all over again, you’d do a lot of things differently.
You would have spent more time loving and less time working.
You would have held your tongue when criticizing, but praised liberally.
You would have let the housework go and got down on the floor to build with legos.
You would have protected them more fiercely and yet taught them the value of freedom and personal responsibility. You would have shown them the value of reliance on others and yet how to stand alone. You would have modeled better the beauty of humility and strength of character.
But there are 4 things you need to know:
Hindsight is not 20/20
Every parent who looks back finds their mistakes magnified. No matter how old or young our children are, we look back and wish we’d have done something differently. With age comes wisdom….and a lot of regrets. But hindsight isn’t 20/20, because mingled in all those mistakes you’ve made, things left undone, and things that should have been left undone are all the things you did right!
Don’t allow your shortcomings to overshadow a job well done!
Super Mom is a myth
Society has sold us a pack of lies in the form of the super mom. She is a respected corporate executive. She wears a size 2, has two beautiful children, drives a hybrid, and lives in suburbia. Her children excel in school and sports, and are well-cultured. Her modern home with white interior looks like the cover of Better Homes & Gardens and she is always cool and collected.
And she exists only on Pinterest and magazine covers.
Do you feel you like you’ve never measured up? You’re in good company, because many have tried and failed in the process. Super Mom is too high an expectation. Why not settle for the mom you are. Your children love you – and that is enough!
The end of the story isn’t written yet
Have your children made wrong choices despite what they know is right? Don’t give up hope. The end of the story isn’t written yet.
History is replete with godly men and women who did incredible exploits for the kingdom of God, but whose testimonies contain failure and wrong choices. One need look no further than the Bible to find that many in Hebrews’ Hall of Faith were less-than-perfect colorful characters. But before their stories were completed, God came through and used them to do mighty things for Him!
God’s grace is there to fill in the cracks
Parenthood does not come with an instruction manual. We have read all the books, attended all of the seminars and listened to all the advice, but in the end realized that each child is unique. No book, seminar, or piece of advice can ever tailor-fit every child because God created each child with unique personality to fit his equally unique purpose.
As parents, we find that our role is trial-and-error. Even with multiple children, we find that we know as little with our last child as we did with our first.
That’s where God’s grace comes in to fill in the cracks.
He never expected us to parent perfectly, just grace-fully.
And we need that grace to fill in where we’re inadequate! Embrace His grace today. You’re inadequacies are only opportunities to rely on Him more and you less!
There is nothing like parenthood to keep us on our knees before the throne in humble cries for the wisdom only God can give.
Dear mom, you haven’t failed. You have only realized something that every mom must eventually accept – you are not perfect. And that is a beautiful thing. The cracks you see allow the light of grace to shine through, until a beautiful refection of Jesus is seen!
You are a vessel, but He is the substance.
May His grace pour through you in abundance as you celebrate the beauty of grace-full imperfection!
Here are some of my favorite parenting books:
The Dr. James Dobson Parenting CollectionWomen Living Well: Find Your Joy in God, Your Man, Your Kids, and Your HomeA Mom After God’s Own Heart: 10 Ways to Love Your Children (George, Elizabeth (Insp))The Power of a Praying® ParentThe Power of Praying® for Your Adult ChildrenThe Power of a Praying® Mom: Powerful Prayers for You and Your Children