“Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.” James 4:14
In our family, when one of our children acts unkindly, we ask if that child would like a “do-over.” It’s a moment of parental grace in which the child rethinks the mistake and has a second chance to respond with respect and love. Everyone’s heart is healed, and everyone feels loved. As parents, we love this moment that is chock-full of discipleship and grace!
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if real life had do-overs? Imagine you’re too busy to make good eye contact while your child shares her feelings? Or, perhaps you’re too tired to mentally engage in that time of play? If only we could just take a do-over! Unfortunately, more often than not, the moment passes and we heartbreakingly realize we missed the opportunity to show love.
Psalm 144:4 says, “our days are like a fleeting shadow,” and James 4:14 says, “our life is but a mist that appears for a little while and vanishes.” My call to all you beautiful mamas is this: life is short, so love your children well today. Frankly, this is also a call to myself. Tears well up in my eyes as countless scenes of our family’s daily life flash through my mind: half-listening, on the phone too much, over-scheduled, mixed-up priorities.
More tears come as I recollect, in contrast, the constant whisper of the Holy Spirit to me saying, “Love them well.” Not kidding here: God tells me to love my children well nearly every day.
He is a good Father, and He gently nudges me so lovingly. So no “mama guilt” allowed while reading this! The best response is a simple acknowledgment deep in the heart that improvements are needed, along with a genuine, giant step toward God.
Does it sound impossible to change things in your home? Romans 7:18b says, “I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.” We all feel this way at times, but be relieved because God will do it all through you. Have a soft heart to authentically and deeply pursue God so He can teach you the art of loving your children well.
Blessings and Love,
Test your heart. Are you living by your own thoughts and desires or by the Holy Spirit’s? Love is a fruit of the Holy Spirit in your life. Invite Him to lead and guide you as you love your children well. Remember that God’s grace can cover your mistakes. Pray daily that your gracious Father will allow your children to remember the good experiences and the times when you loved them well instead of remembering the less-than-perfect times.
Commit to praying, and then plan…again and again. Proverbs 16:3 (NLT) says, “Commit your actions to the Lord, and your plans will succeed.” Dream with God about what it looks like to love your children well. This summer is a perfect opportunity to improve! In your prayer time, ask God for His schedule, His activities, His divine plan. Then make your plans accordingly.