Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him. Psalms 127:3
Those of us that have been blessed with the responsibility of parenthood can probably spend many hours sharing stories about the numerous funny moments raising children. If we stop to think about it, many of those times that cause us to break out in hysterical laughter or that cause us frustration can become teachable moments if we allow ourselves time to pause and open our ears to what God may be using our kids to teach us.
One of those lessons came to me on the night before the new school year began. This was the first year that my seven year old daughter, Alena, chose her outfit by herself for school. When she showed me her choice, the first thing that I noticed was that it didn’t match. After trying to give her a tutorial on color patterns, she then informed me that she was also wearing a tiara, but did not give me a special reason for her desire; she was simply wearing it because “she wanted to.”
My husband and I just shook our heads in disbelief, laughed quietly and spent several minutes trying to convince her that it wasn’t appropriate for her to wear her tiara to school. I first reminded her that toys were not allowed to be brought to school. She looked at the tiara and saw that it was made in China. Her logic was that the tiara was made in China, a real place, therefore it is not a toy.
Since my first argument did not work, I tried a different approach. I told her that the other girls might not have a tiara to wear to school, so it might hurt their feelings. This finally dissuaded her from wearing the tiara, but she still chose to wear a pink headband with cat ears instead and has continued to do so since the school year began. Alena wants to make sure that she is noticed wherever she goes.
I didn’t reflect too much on this incident until I started preparing for my Fall Ladies Luncheon. As I prayed about the theme, God brought this event to my remembrance, so I decided to meditate on the experience and view life through my child’s eyes. Our children inherit many of our characteristics, so what could God be teaching me through Alena?
In Alena’s world, she doesn’t see anything wrong with wearing a tiara to school because she loves it and feels that she is entitled to wear one. When she places it on her head, she imagines herself as the most beautiful girl in the world and no one can convince her of any other truth. Also, before anyone can convince her that her point of view is wrong, they have to have an argument that either appeals to her logic or to her emotions. Otherwise, she will not be convinced.
Alena has this demeanor because my husband and I constantly affirm her. She trusts and believes us when we tell her that she is beautiful, smart, caring and a blessing. But, what would happen if someone begins to speak words to her that are contrary to what we have taught her? Will she still be able to hold on to that same confidence?
As I examined my life, I had to ask myself, do I still believe what God’s word says about me? Have I let others persuade me to give up things that I feel add value to my life or make me feel special? Do I hold the opinions of others to a higher standard than the opinion of God?
At times, my responses to these questions have not always been correct because I had forgotten my identity in Christ. I am thankful for my special gift of Alena that reminded me of who I am. We all need those reminders on occasion to display confidence in the affirmations that Christ has given us. If we asked God to take control of our life and lead us, He will. Just continue to pursue the passion within you that is aligned with God’s purpose for your life and He will take care of all of the details. In case you forget, these are some reminders of who you are:
- You are precious to God and He will take care of you. Matthew 6:25-44
- You are not destined to stumble or to be destroyed. You have a noble purpose and hope. I Peter 2:8-9
- God has filled your life with good things. You can trust Him to satisfy you. Psalm 103:1-5
- You can do all things through Christ who gives you strength. Philippians 4:13
- The Lord is right here with you, an ever present help in time of need. Psalm 46:1
- The Lord is your rock and refuge. He will be a safe place for you today. Psalm 18:1