Wednesday, September 26, 2012


there are so many things i want to teach my girls. life lessons i want them to learn. values and boundaries i want them to have. when i stop and think about the enormous task of growing them into the women i desire them to be, it can seem overwhelming-to say the least. it's a tremendous responsibility to be a parent; and one i don't take lightly. it's frightening at times to know that my girls are learning how to live, how to love, how to be... by watching how i live, how i love, and essentially soaking in what i show them about life. if i'm being honest, there are some days that it's a case of the blind leading the blind. i can let the whining and fussing and typical toddler antics get the best of me. i'm not proud of those "do as i say, not as i do" moments with my girls, but those are often the times I learn the most about myself and about motherhood. a few weeks ago at church, our pastor said something that resonated with me and i have been coming back to it time and time again....especially during those trying parenting moments. 

"be the kind of person you want to raise."

if you asked me what i desire for my girls, i could easily list off character traits and attributes that i'd love for them to posses. (fruits of the spirit, anyone?) kindness, faithfulness, and self-control, just to name a few. but if the tables were turned, would i be able to say the same about myself?  can i really expect my girls to grow into women that love God and love others if i just tell them how to do this, but don't show them? 

"be the kind of person you want to raise...."

i want my girls to be kind and loving. when someone speaks to them harshly or hurts them, i pray that they'll stand up for themselves, but do it out of love. 
"be the kind of person you want to raise...."
do i show kindness? when i feel hurt, am i quick to retort or do i speak out of love? 

i hope libbi and laney go after their goals and dreams. i want them to know that hard work and determination can take them SO far! and that success is so much sweeter when you've worked hard for it. 

"be the kind of person you want to raise...."
do i set goals and work hard to achieve them? am i diligent in my work?

i want my precious girls to always err on the side of faithfulness and be filled with grace and mercy. i want them to have a heart for serving others and know the joy that comes from answered prayers. 
"be the kind of person you want to raise...."
am i quick to give mercy? do i show grace when they've made mistakes? are my prayers those of a faithful follower?

i pray that libbi and laney will know that to have a friend, you have to be a friend. i pray that strong friendships will be ever present in their lives. 
"be the kind of person you want to raise...."
am i a good friend? do i make my friendships a priority? 

i hope that they will be brave enough to admit when they've made mistakes. i hope they'll not only seek forgiveness when they've messed up, but also extend it to others when they've been wronged.  i hope they'll know deep down in their souls that bitterness can darken their hearts, but forgiveness will always set them free.
"be the kind of person you want to raise...."
do i offer forgiveness when i've been wronged? do i admit my mistakes and ask for forgiveness? do i hold grudges? do i keep a record of wrongs? 

even though it seems light years away, there may come a day when "daughter" is not their only title. they may also be called "wife" and one day "mother." if and when that day comes, i hope that they will have marriages that glorify the Lord. i hope that they are wives that honor their husbands by loving fiercely and forgiving whole heartedly. i hope that they are mothers who love their children enough to discipline them and who take every opportunity to teach them about Jesus. 
"be the kind of person you want to raise...."
is my marriage glorifying to God? am i quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to anger? do i set boundaries for my children and discipline them out of love when they're broken? does my life reflect Jesus or does it reflect things of this world? 

"be the kind of person you want to raise...."
i've come to realize that for me, being a parent is not only humbling (think: tantrums in public, eating my words for all the times i said, "i'll never...") but it is also incredibly convicting. and i'm only a little over three years into this journey! :)
how can i expect my children to learn to love God and love others if i'm not willing to teach them by example? obviously, i'm human and i make mistakes - lots of them! - every day. but thank God that His grace is greater. greater than any mistake i could make. greater than any doubt i have. greater than any parenting blunder that comes my way. and with His all consuming grace comes my prayer that i can be the kind of person I want to raise.... the kind of mother He intended me to be...the kind of wife He intended me to be....the kind of person that He intended me to be.

 But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it says, "God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble."
James 4:6

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