Today’s blog post is the final excerpt I’ll be sharing from my upcoming book, The SuperMom Myth: Conquering the Dirty Villains of Motherhood (Shiloh Run Press), before it releases on Tuesday, December 1. Pre-order before Nov. 30 to get a special collection of bonus gifts.
I often write these words on my kitchen chalkboard as a reminder:
“Love is patient, love is kind” (1 Corinthians 13:4).
Take a look around. I’m betting that in your house right now live the people you love best. Therefore, they should be granted the greatest claims on your kindness. Not your grouchiness.
The Grouch on the Couch—a classic dirty villain of motherhood—is not patient. She is not kind. No mom is perfect, and we’re all bound to slip, maybe even tomorrow—or today. The key is to be aware of how our words, actions, and attitudes are stacking up—even in the midst of constant external pressures—and to make deliberate efforts to pile on more patience than pestering, more smiles than spewing, more softness than snits, and more hugs than hollers.
Then even when we mess up, we still have one tool left in our Grouch-fighting kit.
The power of an apology.
Author Kristen Strong, on her blog Chasing Blue Skies, wrote, “Proverbs 3:34 says the Lord gives grace to the humble. When we apologize to our kids, we show humility and invite grace into our homes, and heaven knows everyone wants to reside in a house where grace lives.”
Isn’t that the truth? Throughout scripture, God exhorts us to forgive one another—for good reasons. Yes, because He forgave us first (Ephesians 4:32) and because unforgiveness hinders our relationship with God (Matthew 6:14–15). But as moms, we need to take the necessity of forgiveness one step further and realize what it says to our children. When we apologize and ask our kids for forgiveness, it teaches them that we are not perfect, nor do we expect them to be. Genuine apologies create an atmosphere of mutual grace, where kids and parents alike can feel free to make mistakes without condemnation. And that, my fellow moms, paints the very picture of Jesus for our children.
“For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him” (John 3:17).
Click here to learn more about The SuperMom Myth: Conquering the Dirty Villains of Motherhood.
I love this challenge, Becky. Even though my boys are young men now, I still think it’s significant and necessary for them to hear my apologize to them when I mess up. In fact, I said something the other day in front of my two younger sons in the presence of their older brother. It wasn’t anything super bad, but I remember how much I took my mother’s words of negative comparison to heart. So I planned on apologizing to them today at lunch–we always eat Sunday lunch together. But I forgot and your post here reminded me of that very important task. I want them to see me eating humble pie much more than any left-over Thanksgiving pie! 😉
Humble pie, amen, Beth! 🙂