I love the word grace for so many reasons. Mainly because I need it to survive. It’s given freely and consistently by God, and because of that simple fact I’m able to make myself new again every morning. It’s almost easy to give grace with the amount I receive on a daily basis. I want to break this definition down into three parts.
1. The exercise of love, kindness, or good will; disposition to benefit or serve another.
Look, we’re all guilty of it. How many times have you been in a hurry trying to get something done, when a little voice from waist level perks up, “I want to help you!”. Of course, we KNOW that if we allow them to help the finished job is going to take 3 times as long, and it’s only going to be done half as well- if that. I just feel the need to express the sheer importance of allowing it, and even encouraging it. We owe it to our children to teach them all of the life skills they need for the big bad world. We can not let our impatience rob them of that. I don’t care if it’s dishes, folding clothes, putting stamps on envelopes, whatever it may be. Remind yourself to give them grace, give them your time, and give them your experience. They NEED it. You are disabling your children without it, period.
Would you believe that I went out into the world not knowing how to separate laundry? How to balance a checkbook? File my taxes? I didn’t know how to properly clean house. I didn’t know how to have a civil disagreement. I damaged my credit before 21 because I didn’t have a clue just how important it was- it’s taken 5 years of hard work to rebuild it. I had never even heard about credit before I was on my own. These are things I wound up teaching myself, TGFG! (Thank God for Google). There are so many things that I still catch myself embarrassingly realizing that I don’t understand in the real world even to this day. I’m not going to lay blame here, but I will say that it was a long hard haul to teach myself how to adult, and it still isn’t over. I only bring this up so that I can beg- please mama’s, don’t send your babies into the world unprepared because of the convenience of just doing it yourself, or not doing it at all. Show them grace as they try and fail and try again. Let them screw up while they’re little, encourage them to jump, but do be there to catch them when they fall. Grace upon grace.
I have discovered that one of the only things I need to be an okay mother is grace. Our children deserve to be given just as much grace and care from we receive from Jesus.
2. The Divine favor toward man; the undeserved kindness or forgiveness from God; Divine love or Pardon.
Grace upon grace upon grace upon grace. That’s what we get, and it’s what we owe our kids. If there’s anyone in the world who should have been lost on the word- it’s me. Aside from the fact that it wasn’t modeled for me, I didn’t discover true grace until I became a mother. Before that, I screwed up time and time again, and if there were a Santa’s list of Christian names, mine would probably be near the end- toting the line of the naughty or nice list. I’m a work in progress- and yet still his grace renews me every morning.
3. Beauty, physical, intellectual, or moral; easy elegance of manners; perfection of form.
The last thing I’ve noted is that all too often, even if we are fully capable of giving it to others- we find ourselves unable to gift ourselves with it. Why do we so blatantly refuse to accept that it’s okay to try again tomorrow? Motherhood is a million little moments that God weaves together with unending grace. That’s where the laughter, trials, triumphs, and most importantly love all come into play. As much as God pours over us and and much as we pour into our children- at the end of the day, don’t forget to give it to yourself too.