Hey there, Happy Mother’s Day to all you wonderful Moms!
In honor of Mother’s Day, I want to encourage us to give our children a beautiful gift: Embrace their little average selves. Let’s quit comparing them to everyone else’s kids!
Let’s appreciate our kids for who they are. Let’s just enjoy THEM, not our visions of who they might be someday. This can mean the world to them now and later. Appreciating and enjoying our kids helps us relax and can have wonderful benefits to our family. And as a side note, relaxing benefits our head and heart. And makes us look pretty.
Let’s embrace average! I love average. I take a big sigh of relief over average. Maybe that’s just me and my personality, but maybe it’s not. Don’t we all want to be loved without being pushed and prodded to be someone else? Granted, our children can’t and won’t always be who they are right now, but let’s not pass up on the beautiful people they ARE, even while we hope and pray for growth and change.
I want to help combat the disease of unhealthy comparison. It feels so great to be loved and accepted right where we are. Comparison of each other is so common, I’m not sure we even recognize it for what it is anymore. I’ve heard many times that comparison is the thief of joy. Comparison = UNHAPPY WOMEN. Yep. I can say that, cause I’m a woman. Whoa. I just found the = sign on the computer. I am slightly impressed with myself. Okay, more than slightly.
Of course I do realize that we can encourage excellence in our children. My concern is shoving perfectionism down their throats just so they can make us look good.
I think we compare our children’s abilities, and our mothering abilities no matter our age or circumstances. The young mom might just be delighted with something her toddler has done and is beaming with pride, she may feel like her hard work and efforts are finally bearing some fruit. Later she gets on Facebook, only to see that another mom has posted a picture of Superchild doing or saying the very same thing, several months earlier than this young mom’s little one. If she isn’t very careful, her day can be ruined. That very same child she was so proud of can seem incredibly behind in just a few seconds. We have to guard ourselves, and the temptation is constant. I know because I struggle.
I’ve been reading Tozer again and he says it so well…
“There is hardly a man or woman who dares to be just what he or she is without doctoring up the impression.”
“Only an evil desire to shine makes us want to appear other than we are.”
There are older moms who have been through a little more, but no doubt still love to hear praise for their children. For them it may be grades, sports, or some way they have made themselves stand out in the crowd. It doesn’t seem to matter if they are in public school or homeschool, comparison is always nearby. Waiting to trap us into that internal turmoil. We want our kids to be the best. We love the attention! We want them (and us) to be the stars of the show! We want that satisfaction of a job well done, which is not in itself horrible. But we want the admiration of our fellow moms. And so we give in to bragging, envy and pride.
It’s a human condition. But it can crush us.
We all struggle with comparison on some level, isn’t that why there are verses like these?
If anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself. Each one should take pride in his own actions, without comparing himself to somebody else. -Galatians 6:3-4
God knew. He knew there would be Facebook, pictures, and blogs. He knows our hearts. He knows we are sinners who need saving. He gave us His Word to guide us through relationships, comparison and parenting.
Last week I got to hear Bob Goff speak at the Thrive Conference. He said it perfectly…
“If we keep making it about us, it’ll never be about Jesus”
I love that.
So let’s go hug those wonderful average kids of ours, and quit trying to make it all about us.