17 Mar A Family Legacy: Redemption, Repentance, and Restoration
I looked down at my dad’s response. Right next to it was a heart symbol.
In the midst of many things for which I am thankful, my dad and I have had our share of relational struggles. Hurt, disappointment, miscommunication, and anger. Over the years, intertwined with blessings and good times, we have had our share of conflict.
As I looked down at the text I felt a new found warmth, I felt like my dad was learning what his adult daughter needed, something I had longed for growing up.
Parenting is hard! How much easier to understand this as a parent. How much easier to empathize when we see how much the events of our lives (and our parents lives) affect decisions, personality, strengths, weaknesses, etc.
I could write at length regarding desires I have for my own children. I want God to shape my heart so that I want that which He wants. That I would value that which he values for them.
But I want to share that which can bring hope and healing to the areas of brokenness we ALL have within our families and our lives. No matter our past, regardless of how life giving or life draining, we have challenges to work through. We ALL have failings and weakness. Would you pull up a chair? Let’s peak at the hope in store for us!
My dad did and does pray that God would fill in the gaps in his parenting.
Before my Mom died she prayed for the future of her children.
My dad, my stepmom, and my parents through marriage all strive to grow in Christ. I am beyond blessed that in their stage of life they seek to be shaped more into the image of Christ. They want their lives to reflect who their God is and they want to impact the lives of others.
Rearranging our perspective
What if we need to adjust our thinking?
I am always seeking ways to improve my mothering. And I do think this is of much value. But what if our children are transformed not only by the way we love them, but by the way we handle it when we fail them and when we are weak?
I think back to when my first two children were really little. With soberness I can picture times I was harsh, impatient, and yelled. I am sad for ways I hurt them. But I also see a mom that was overcome with guilt and shame. That would let her emotions overtake her when she failed. A situation would happen and then it would drag on because I would let it drag me down.
Do I still act in these ways to my kids today? I hate to say it but yes. But I am thankful to say I am being refined and changed by a perfect heavenly Father. And He is not surprised that my children have an imperfect mother!
So how do we love our children (and honor God) when we fail?
Let our selfishness draw us to Jesus – press in, draw near to His throne of grace!
Apologize right away
Seek to reconnect after conflict
Pray that God would fill in the gaps of our parenting
Let them see our weakness and sadness – they don’t need perfect role models, but ones that love, seek to follow God’s ways, move forward, and get back up after falling.
Redemption is beautiful! The changing of that which was broken into something new. Sometimes the beauty in a relationship is made that much sweeter when you know what the past has been.
I pray that in my old age, or after my death, my children will not only say that I am a woman that loved them well. But that I was a woman that acknowledged her sin and weakness, apologized quickly, humbled herself to draw back in relationship, prayed fervently for their best, and one that pointed to the cross: the answer for our sin and weakness.
Who wants to join me?
May we testify of Jesus’ perfection in the face of our brokenness! May we deeply know the way he is and desires to be our righteousness when we allow him to be.
May you be blessed richly, in your heart, this Friday.
And as always, my friend, seek counsel or help for serious problems or abusive relationships.