Mom Talk: Nothing but Grace

20120920-011548.jpgI am currently reading Jen Hatmaker’s newest book, For the Love. I wish we could just all read it together and discuss each page because it is that good. We could sit in my living room, drink a little something hot and look each other in the eyes.  I am not a jump-on-the-bandwagon-of-the-latest-and-greatest-speaker-author-personality kind of girl. Jen Hatmaker, however, brings out the hidden groupie inside of me. Ever since my friend and I heard her speak at a conference, I knew she and I were cut from the same cloth.

Her advice to her children, as they are approaching their teen/early adult years, is fabulously simple.

  1. Be kind.
  2. Be yourself.
  3. Love Jesus.

“My dream is that you see hurting kids and do the simple, brave work of kindness.” <– How great is that?

Don’t we make it way more difficult that that? Yet, all of the instructions we give, if broken down, would fall into one of those three categories. What if, as adults-women-moms-coworkers-wives, we lived by those three rules?

  1. Be kind. To yourself, your people, strangers at the store, people online. I was in the restroom at Macy’s the other day and this woman walked up to wash her hands beside me. She had one of those adorable, short, spiky haircuts that I admire so much but could never pull off. I turned and said, “You have seriously fabulous hair.” She broke out into the biggest smile and said that I had just made her whole day. Y’all, that woman smiled the whole way out of the restroom. We all want good hair, don’t we?
  2. Be yourself. Inside of you is everything you need to walk out the calling you have been given. Single mom, working mom, homeschooling mom, mom of multiples, mom of a child with different needs, mom of teens, mom of a prodigal – trust that God made you the way He made you for a reason.
  3. Love Jesus. Nothing else will ever matter if we do not love Jesus. No parenting book or philosophy will help us raise our babies the way loving Jesus will. The fact is that we all do this mothering thing differently. I am overprotective in a lot of ways. You may be more of a free range parent. We can be on opposite ends of the spectrum on a thousand issues but, if we both love Jesus, we can meet right there and encourage one another.

I believe that, if we were more generous with the grace and more careful with the criticism, the world would be an easier place in which to walk around. Mom Talk

The other day, I posted a comment about my daughter graduating from an infant car seat to a big girl one. Someone asked me if she would be forward facing or still rear facing. I answered…and held my breath because nothing brings out the big feels in people like someone parenting differently than they do. We take other people’s parenting so personally.

Here is my promise to you.

I am not judging you.

Not you personally, the way you parent, what Bible translation you use, what you did or did not watch on television last night or the fact that you don’t like coffee. {Well, maybe a little on the coffee thing.}

If your child throws a fit at Walmart – you get nothing but grace from me.

If you open your car door and trash falls out – I will open my door and show you my trash.

If you walk into the worship service late with your crew – I am going to high-five you for being there.

There are too many people out there shaking their heads, pointing their fingers and wagging their tongues. I am all too aware of my own desperate need for grace to withhold it from someone else.

You, my sweet friends, are so loved and adored.