The first time I saw my son stomp to his bedroom and then slam the door, I knew I was looking at my own reflection. It was even more pronounced when he rolled his eyes as I scolded him. Whether we like it or not, our children often pick up and mimic our traits, habits and tempers. It can be a very good or bad thing, depending on how we live our lives in front of them.
Anyone who has children realizes that being a parent is not easy. The Lord only knows how much I fail every day. I pray and ask continuously for Him to help me be a good Mommy. So I’m not going to pretend that I even know what I’m doing for one minute or that I feel I’m so great that I have a right to educate others on the dos and don’ts, but I would like to share the things God has showed me. I know this is a learning process for me, and just like any other part of my life, I will make the wrong choices—every now and then. However, I believe the most important thing we can do is to learn from our troubles, pray harder and constantly look to God for our guidance.
After all, He is the one who gives us these little ones to brighten our lives. He knows what they need, far greater, than we do. He knows the correct balance of love and discipline to help them grow and establish strong roots. He knows when they need to be held and when they need to be left alone. He knows when they need help getting up and when they need to do it on their own.
My Mom and I often talk about the way I was raised. She’s amazed and often heartbroken at how she treated me when I was a child. She was tough and stern with me. She pushed me to find my limitations in life and then pushed me to overcome them. But that’s EXACTLY what I needed. Now she realizes it was God who hardened her heart toward me. If she had always done everything for me, then I would have never learned to find my own way. And she was never truly mean; she just wouldn’t ever allow me to use the handicapped/disabled card. She never showed me any sympathy for my scars.
She forced me to live a normal life and I can never tell you how much that means to me. In doing that, she gave me a wonderful, beautiful life. She could have just as easily taken it all away. Imagine what kind of person I would be if they had blessed my poor heart constantly or if they had constantly put limitations on me. None of us know the true depths of our abilities until we are challenged to prove them.
And that’s what I want to do for my children. I want to give them a good solid foundation to build their life on. I want to take them to church and teach them about the most important part of life—God. I want to pray for them and trust God will save them one day and bless them with everything they will ever need in this life and the one to come. I want to TRUST God with my children and know that He will give them exactly what He gave me. I want to set them up stones for their future.
I want them to look back on their life one day and be thankful for the way I raised them. I will never be perfect, but I want them to know I tried and gave them my best. I don’t want to just tell them how they should live their life, but I want to show them. I want to show them how to handle difficult situations, by doing what they can do and then turning the rest over to God. I want to show them to be kind to others and treat other people the way they want to be treated.
I want to show them that living for God, is the best life they could ever live. I want to show them that if they put God first in their lives, everything else will fall into place and be even better. I want to show them to dream big. The only limitations in life are the ones we place on ourselves.
I want to teach them to always look to the positive side of every situation. I want to show them to always look for that little glimmer of hope in all situations. And believe with God all things are possible. I want to teach them they can overcome anything at all, through prayer and obedience to God.
Okay, so I know some of these things they will have to learn on their own. But I also know there is nothing their little eyes don’t see nor their little ears hear. When we think they’re not listening or paying any attention at all, they hear and see it all—the good and the bad.
Every day we are molding our children in some way; whether it is a positive or negative way. They will either adhere to the things we teach them or have to learn to overcome them.