Today’s my girls’ birthday, my lovely youngest daughter. She moves to LA tomorrow. Onward toward her music career.
How the years fly and in the end, and when those kids soar off to their own adventures, we are left to wave and wish them joy and peace and life.
What do you wish you had done differently as a parent? What do you wish your parents had done differently?
Love. That is what a wise older woman told me she would want to do again: let them know how much she loves them. And let them know how much Jesus loves them.
Love well. Be there for them, sure, but be there in the way they need: unconditionally, peacefully, trusting God with these beautiful beings entrusted to us. Trusting the process of life as it unfolds, and trusting our children to be as equipped in their quest for life as we were… or weren’t. Not trying to prevent every misstep (as we see it) but instead letting life do what life does: grow, nurture, teach, refine, mature.
Loving ourselves too and knowing we did the best we could with what we knew at the time. I have only a few regrets, a handful of things I wish I’d known back then. Like how vital love is, above all else. That things will all work out, whatever working out looks like. That nothing is more beautiful in that house we raise our family in than the people in it.
If you’re a parent, go love those children. Hug them, kiss their cheeks, and tell them they are absolutely perfect the way they are, the way God designed them. If they are not “performing up to standards,” get over yourself and love them. That’s what God told you to do: be God’s love, not God’s judgment. If this is hard for you, start with love for yourself; ask God to show you God’s love for you.
And if you can grasp this, know that your parent’s lack of complete love for you pours out from a lack of complete love for themselves—the problem is not in you but in them, because they have fear where love should be.
Life is big and it goes by quickly. Grab all the love you can in it. Give all the love you can to it.
How the years fly and in the end, when the curtain begins to draw to a close, we are left to love, infinitely.
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