Thursday, May 10, 2012

Perfection Escapes Me!

Train up a child in the way he should go, Even when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6
Yesterday we began a three-day round of devotionals devoted to mothers in honor of Mother’s Day coming up this Sunday.  In review we learned that the top three stressors of mothers are according to author Karol Ladd:

1.             House Beautiful: wanting the house to always look clean and nice.
2.             Perfect Kids: wanting to maintain a stellar family image. 
3.             Need Nabbers: feeling needed by everyone at the same time

Can you imagine living day in and day out with an older person continually demanding that we look act, and perform perfectly?  Sometimes that is exactly what we do with our children.  We place expectations on them that we would have a hard time living up to and we may not even realize it.  Put your priorities in order and think about what is the most important thing.  Here are some ideas:
  • Make a list of character qualities you want your children to learn.
  • Focus on character more than image or achievement.
  • Work together with your kids to form realistic goals.
  • Realize that “looking” precious is not as important as “being precious.
  • Consider disappointments as opportunities to learn and do better next time. 
Getting to the Root of the Problem:  If you struggle with wanting your kids to maintain an image of perfection, the real problem may be your own issue with pride.  Other struggles you may be experiencing could be expectations that are too high, comparisons with others, issues from your own past, caring too much about what people think, or living vicariously through your children. 

We all want the best for our children.  We actually want better for them than what we have.  Sometimes therein lies the problem.   We may try to live vicariously through our children.  You may have struggled in sports as a child, but by signing your son up for baseball, you can relive some of the passion of the sport through him.  Except your son may not have the passion or the talent for baseball.  Or he may have real talent for baseball but no passion, which will really drive you crazy!  It is hard to let them be who they are instead of making them who we want them to be.  God has a plan for their lives and as a parent we must have faith in Him to lead them and faith that they will follow.

Give your expectations for your children to the Lord and ask Him to direct their paths and yours.  Work on what is important like their character and their relationship with the Lord.  Be willing to take that picture of perfection off the wall and lay it at Jesus’ feet, realizing that kids are not perfect, and neither are moms. 

Scripture to Claim:
For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Or am I striving to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a bond-servant of Christ. Galatians 1:10

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