Written by: Alexandria Brown
Hello all you wonderful ladies out there... As I sit down to write an article on parenting I find it kind of ironic and funny.
Here I am a mom of two that are barely out of babyhood and I am suppose to write this article giving wisdom and advice to parents. If I’m honest some days we barely make it through the day. Somedays we are rushing through checking off the list and somedays we don’t even know where the stinking list is!
And then there are days where I see the Lord move through my children...and wow, just wow.
Children are funny like that. I believe that sometimes they are more in touch with what they need or feel than we are as adults, they just don’t necessarily know how to articulate it.
My favorite verse in the Bible is the passage that speaks on the power of God’s love in Romans. It tells us that nothing in all of creation can separate us from God’s love.
If that is true then I have to ask myself how come so many of us are hurting and struggling and not living out our true identities in Christ.
If His love is the most powerful thing then, why are so many people overcome with fear, hopelessness, and anxiety?
Can I put a pin in that for a moment and tell you a story?
I read a book long ago called The 5 Love Languages, by Gary Chapman and it opened my eyes up to a whole new understanding of how to love and how to be loved. (This is not a re-write of the book. AND I would encourage you to go read it.) In the book The 5 Love Languages, it describes the different ways that we receive and give love as follows, Acts of Service, Receiving Gifts, Quality Time, Words of Affirmation, and Physical Touch.
Now in our family we have quite a spectrum. There are four of us in our immediate family and we all receive love in different ways. I feel loved best when we spend quality time together and acts of service, my husband’s is giving and receiving gifts, my daughter’s is words of affirmation and my son’s is physical touch. Meaning none of us receive or naturally give love the way anyone else does. For example, my husband’s love language is gifts, he married a TERRIBLE gift giver. My son’s love language is physical touch while everyone else in the family has a 5 foot bubble around us at all times. LOL
Often times we try to show love to those around us by doing for them what makes us feel loved. For instance, if I were to try to show my family love I would clean the house, cook the food, do the laundry, do, do, do and then we would go do something fun. Where I felt love, they just felt busy. What my son craved was not to go out and do all of these fun things, but just to sit on the couch and cuddle up. My daughter didn’t need to cross off all of these tasks, but to know that we are proud of her. That she is an incredible person. That we love her and that we are so glad she is ours. When we did those things is when they felt most safe, most loved.
Love is most powerful in our children’s lives when they know that they are loved. If I could encourage you with anything today it would be to love your children in the way that they receive love and watch what happens.
Watch them begin to change and shape into the identity that God has created for them. I’m not saying that there won’t be challenges...haha, what do I know? My oldest is a pre-teen...But, I know that I can trust that nothing in all of creation can over come the love of God.
I was once told that we can only love to the extent that we have experienced love. So when we say “I love you with all of my heart,” it is not actually true because we have never fully experienced God’s pure love. The love we have experienced is tainted with hurts and faults of those who have loved us and we have loved. They shape our perspective and understanding both for the good and bad.
There are times I get frustrated with my children and I have to later come and apologize to them for the way I spoke, acted or reacted. God doesn’t love like that.
God’s love is not conditional nor transactional. It IS unconditional.
That is the love that I want to share with my children in a way that they know that they know that mom and dad’s love for them and more importantly God’s love for them is unconditional. I want my children to know that they know that there is nothing they can do to make me love them any more, and there is nothing that they can do to make me love them less. I want them to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that the love of God, the true love of God is total and complete, lacking nothing and completely irrevocable.
Imagine what the world will look like in this next generation if our children more fully understood the true love of God, because they experienced and received a more pure version of love from us first.
Lord I teach me to reflect your love to my children, so that they can understand Your perfect love better than they have before.
Love ya Sis!
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