The parenting advice that has puzzled me the most and also pushed me into the dark corners of my children's facial expressions has been, "Get to know each of your children because they are all different." I always nodded my head yes when I heard it, while rolling my internal eyes, thinking "well, duh."
Now that I have three little boys, ages 5, 3, and 2, I cringe at what I thought I knew.
In getting to know my oldest, after five years of watching and listening, I've learned that he can give a quick answer, and it will be right and true. He answers "Jesus" before anyone. He prays with eloquence. He explains it all so well, but just below that smooth surface, he struggles hard with disbelief, perfectionism, and a lack of understanding about grace.
What doesn't come naturally for him is the admission of weakness. He hates to ask for help. He doesn't want to need grace or correction or mercy; he doesn't want to mess up.
And so here I am telling you all the dirt I hope to ever share about my child, and oh, at the same time, have I not also described myself? Yes. I do give many right answers, quaking with insecurity.
If I ever correct one of my children, 10 times out of 10, the lesson is somehow also for me.
Let me meet you here in this safe room and tell you this:
I am weak.
Because I am entrenched in mommy-grog, because I have so many thorns in my flesh, because I have tried and worked and begged and, at times, given up, I have nothing much to say except that I've nothing much to say.
But He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9&10)
I am weak, and yet I am delighted. Yes, there is no ocean that compares to grace, no depth or height. All the power in the universe rests with grace, in that deep crook of God-arm.
Please let me give you permission to brag, to delight a little. What weakness should you acknowledge so that Christ's power be made perfect in and rest on you today?