“Be brave, Little Bear.” My mom used to say this to me when I was young and afraid. Once, I was afraid to talk to a new neighbor, and she whispered those words to me and sent me off to make a friend. I walked across the yard, and the closer I got to the neighbors house, the more I could hear my mom’s words, ringing in my head over and over.
Let’s be honest here: Being a parent takes courage. It takes a realization that no matter how hard you try, you won’t please everyone. Somebody, somewhere, will parent differently than you. Don’t waste your time fussing over the mommy wars. Pray, research, seek wisdom, then have courage to be the parent God wants you to be!
The opposite of courage is fear. I admit that many of the parenting decisions we made in the early years were fear-based decisions. There was no room for grace in our home because we were so stinking afraid of our children failing that we were unbending and unrealistic in our expectations. Fear-based parenting resources guilt parents into utilizing their over-the-top controlling methods, and set parents at odds with their children, with an “us vs. them” mentality.
Grace, on the other hand, is full of courage. Courage to say no to harsh parenting techniques that leave us unconnected and at odds with the little people in our home. Courage to always be transparent and forgiving with our children. Courage to obey God and follow Biblical principles in our home, whether the world agrees or not. Courage to say no to sin when it’s necessary and yes to our children’s needs even when it’s inconvenient. Grace draws families together with a team mentality.
Aren’t you glad that God promises to be right there with us on this parenting journey? (Joshua 1:9) We can have courage because God is always present, a help in trouble, a comfort in anxiety, and a strong tower to hide in when we’re afraid.
Today’s Challenge: Let go of fear-based parenting and have courage to be the parent God wants you to be!