Reading: Philippians 1:6
By nature I really struggle with being a ‘Grace and Peace’ type of girl. I think that my upbringing gave me ‘zero tolerance’ for weakness and mistakes. I am completely fine about my own weakness. I find it strange that I can be really compassionate and caring in some contexts and in others ..really harsh. As a parent this can show itself in a number of ways usually through frustration and impatience. Reading Philippians chapter one, a few days ago I found the Holy Spirit speaking to me from verse 6 but from a very different angle. It was encouraging at the time but right now..it is just plain hard. this year I am choosing to embrace hard as not so bad. I have never parented a 9 year old daughter before and I want to do the best I can but in my good intentions and my loving motivations I can simply not get it right naff fall far short of it is going to need to bring her up ‘just perfect’. I have already made plenty of mistakes and I am bound to make many more.
I recently read a quote by Author Lysa Terquest ‘
‘There is something I have come to realise …my name is mum not God’.
This verse in 1:6 is a reminder to me that it is not my job to complete the work that God has started in her life. He is more than capable of working in her heart. If I parent out of fear! frustration, perfectionism or condemnation, if believe that unless I correct every mistake she makes, if I don’t jump on very attitude, ever insecurity, every pretentious thing ..then she won’t be quite right the. I am bound to fail.
What if her future is not dependant on me?
What if I took a step back from playing god and let God be God?What makes me think that her future is so dependant on me?
and if it is, what happens if I get it wrong?
If the outcomes of her life are dependant on me …then I really have every possibility of making a mess. I can be at peace about her. She is the handiwork of God and has been since he knit her together in my womb. When he needs me to help ..he will let me know. She is the most complete she needs to be at 9 but God has not finished with her yet and never will be until Jesus comes back . As long as it takes Jesus to return is the length of time he has to complete the work he started in her so why am I in such a hurry to see perfection. I love that he doesn’t just use this ‘mum’. He places so many sifficent others in her world. if they make mistakes he can fix them and her world is not dependant ont hem. If she has a terrible freind or an awful teacher..he is still working to complete what he started and every person and every experience will altimately turn out for her good becasue he is at work.
The same goes for the many others that God has put in my life to care for. I can let the creator create and let his handiwork complete his own masterpiece…it will bring glory to God if God is at work but if I interfere in the process it may take longer and diminish his shine. Let me to do the work in their hearts I’m not finished..I promised the product will be beautiful..I don’t make rubbish and I don’t discard incomplete projects.
It also reminds me that the best is yet to come. If God is at work and the work is not complete…then the finished work the end is going to far better. I love the hope that this scriptures stirs in me. I love the certainty and confidence Paul adds to it…
My thoughts on Phil 1:6 for my ‘daughters’
The future is bright.
If Jesus doesn’t return for a long time then the work he is doing in her will carry on for generations to come.
God is in no hurry …he has all her lie time to complete what he started.
Grace is never a finished product. It is a work in progress.
He never leaves us as we are. He is constantly transforming
He created her and loves her and delights in her.
hod is committed… He has made a commitment to keep at this work and never give up and never tire until he is finished.
He knows the finished product.
I can trust him to do what I can not do.
When he needs my help he will ask for it.
There is no lid on her growth or a box on her potential.
He will use anything and everything to help complete the work so when I find I can not protect her from stuff at least I have confidence that God will use it to compete her.
He entrusted me with a gift.. He knew what was in me and still entrusted her into my care. I must care deeply for he has entrusted me with.
This scripture stirs confidence but it also confronts my need to be in control. I can let stuff go…if it’s causing me frustration…maybe it is because I have forgotten my role and I am taking responsibility and possible the glory for the finished product. I am simply here to provide a safe and delightful environment that will not inhibit but rather nurture the work that God is desiring to complete in each one. I don’t want to get in the way or slow that process down.
It takes godly wisdom to know what part I must play in that process. It can be confusing and my prayers are more about me and my struggle than they are about them.
Today: my focus is on praying for my daughters….not just my own but my nurture girls and just like my daughter I must remember..I am a nurturer… I am not God. God does a brilliant job without me but he includes me in the work. My ‘daughters’ are a gift. Nothing more. to treasure to protect, to navigate, to nourish to nurture and to continually give back to him…
A good work …not a mistake, not a random act of boredom as intentional as when he created the stars, the sun the waves and every single animal. She is his idea and his creation…and he at work to finish off an absolute masterpiece just as he is doing. I love that he uses and incomplete work (me) to help look after another….