When I think of the duties of motherhood, or parenthood for that matter, the usual comes to mind:
These are certainly important, and can feel like they make up “the bulk” of our parenting efforts.
But what if we all saw ourselves through our parents eyes?
One thing that can be overlooked, but is such a HUGE part of our job as parents, is forming the way our kids see themselves. I have heard it said of parents: “You are their inner voice.” The way we talk to our children plays a huge part in forming that inner voice. How we talk to our children will shape how they will talk to themselves when something goes wrong or right.
I think it even goes beyond that. It’s their entire vision of themselves. I always say that if everyone could see themselves the way God sees them, the world would be a much better place. No more picking yourself apart and seeing only imperfections and competing and comparing. As parents we can be that vision and honestly, the way most parents see their kids is the closest picture of the way God sees them. Only you can truly see beyond that super messy grin or stinky diaper. 😉
I think it can be easy to forget the power we hold in our hands as parents. As a mom, you have the power to build that child up. You have the power to be their inner picture of themselves. That is a huge responsibility and so important in a world that will try and tear them down. I am a firm believer in having a safe place to land, home should be a safe place. A place that you can retreat to and know who you are. A place to know your worth when someone at school or work tells you otherwise.
You– mom, dad– are that safe place. Your kids will find their worth, their inner voice, that inner picture of themselves through your eyes. If you think they are awesome, they will feel awesome. If you tell them their best effort is enough they will believe it. In that same respect if you tear them down, who will build them up? If you are constantly disappointed, who will give them pride?
This doesn’t mean your child can do no wrong and discipline is negative. Who better to lovingly correct them than the one they KNOW loves them no matter what? We as parents need to look at those sweet little ones (or not so little anymore) that God has entrusted into our care, and first love. It doesn’t mean we forget the rest of our job, no one said parenting was easy. While loving we guide, correct, build up and work hard. We contribute to society through daily work but our biggest impact will be those future members of society we are raising up and eventually sending out.
“Your greatest contribution to the kingdom of God may not be something you do but someone you raise.” – Andy Stanley