Hindsight is Always 20/20
By Carla Green
I loved my days of parenting young children. I now am a mom of a 23, 21, and 17 year old. When I look at how I parented and my goal of parenting, I honestly missed some great opportunities. I’d like to share with some of you younger moms, a discovery I made along the mothering journey. While it’s never too late to start, the benefit of starting this when they were small would have made an amazing difference.
I’ll never forget being taught as a young mother the goal of parenting is to take your children from 100% dependence on you (the parent) to 100% independence from you. Well if prizes were being given out in that category, I would have taken home the gold. My kids are independent and have been for a number of years: self-starters, self-thinkers, decision makers, and adults way before their time.
However, here’s where that approach is faulty: Parenting with independence as the goal, takes out the dependence we need to have on God. I wished I had guided my children from being dependent on me to being dependent on Jesus.
When the celebrations, questions, and hardships of life hit, the best friend we have is Jesus. When we’re trying to figure out direction for life, we need to turn to God. When crisis happens, we don’t need to figure things out on our own…we need to ask God what to do.
I remember the kid’s questions that came my way that I allowed them to figure out on their own. Other times I figured things out for them myself. Sometimes I was taking control, and sometimes letting go.
Instead I should have encouraged them to invite God into the situation, through prayer, to see how He wanted to handle it. My role as mom could have been helping them discern what God was saying. The greatest gift I could give was how to truly be in relationship with their Creator. It would have jump started their relationship with Jesus and would have forced me to lay down my mommy agenda.
Now as young adults when the difficulties of life hit and problems arise, they wouldn’t have to feel alone or embarrassed they can’t figure it out. They would be able to recognize God’s voice and quiet the noise of this world, resting in the truth that God is for them and realizing He has a great plan and purpose for their life.
Oh i know, all is not lost and you never stop parenting your kids even if they are independent. However, if you can learn from my mistakes, then my learned wisdom can be put to good use!
One thing I know for sure, Jesus can restore all of our parenting mistakes. It’s never too late to demonstrate how to be in relationship with Jesus. Be authentic. Love your husband and kids through and in all things. Offer to pray with them…in the moment. Recognize what you think God is doing in the situation and speak into it. Encourage them. Celebrate what God is doing. Repeat.
Hindsight is always 20/20. My you use my farsightedness to improve your nearsightedness as a mom today!
What about you? Are you a “seasoned mom” who can pass along a piece of wisdom to our younger moms? Leave a comment with your advice here.