I really struggle with performance oriented faith, relationships, and especially parenting. I don’t want to be the parent who’s love and acceptance is based on behavior, but I very naturally fall into this. I am quick to correct wrong behaviors and slow to show appreciation for accomplishments. I tend to work the opposite way with other relationships — I assume that I am not accepted if I do even the slightest thing wrong. For the first several years of our marriage, I constantly was asking my husband if he regretted marrying me, why he didn’t leave me, did he love me, and more! He must have wearied of it! Yet he was very patient with me and always assured me of his love and commitment. I was far worse in my relationship with God. I was sure for so long that if I didn’t manage to do all that He had called me to well, then He would withdraw His favor from me. But God is gracious and has been really driving home His Truth in my heart lately, particularly Romans 8:38-39 and Psalm 139.
For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
So to tie all the above thoughts together, God is showing me how precious I am to Him and how nothing can come between His love for me shown through Christ’s perfect sacrifice. This Truth is freeing me from the need of acceptance and approval by people. And I want my children to know this Truth through my love and example. I have to discipline in order to train the boys, but I really want to be balanced and not subject them to my performance based tendencies!
These thoughts were on my heart this morning as I was frustrated with the first hour of the day being filled with disobedience, complaining, and disrespect. Then I came upon this blog that helped me regain perspective!
Oh, and the really cool thing — during our Bible time together this morning, I shared the Romans verses with my boys. I explained to them that I wasn’t very good at reflecting this great love that God has for them, but that I really want them to know His love and to know that no matter what happens I will always love them. Since then, they’ve been great! So perhaps the trials of the morning were for my refining more than theirs! God is good!