“I forget…”

My daughter is 7 years old.  She is a joyous and normal child. However, she appears to me to have an old soul.  She is thoughtful and contemplative.  I admit that most times I forget that she is only a second grader.  So I am shocked most times when she does something completely childish.  When she is thoughtless, or careless, I find myself looking at her with exasperation and asking, “What were you thinking??”

How sorry I am for that.  I fear that my expectations sometimes are taking a part of her childhood away.  Is it fair for me always to expect her to be the responsible one, the serious one, the good decision-maker?  Am I not allowing her the freedom to make mistakes and to learn from them?  

My daughter is a great kid.  My prayer today is that I learn to encourage her, but also to support her and show her unconditional love – regardless of her decisions.  My prayer today is that I learn to emulate my Father in heaven, Who is full of grace and mercy – Who delights in me no matter what I do.

Heavenly Father,

You are a God of unending grace.  Teach me to be that kind of parent.  Help me to love on my children as they grow, learn, and make mistakes.  Help me to see them as a work in progress, and to not burden them with unrealistic expectations.  Help me to encourage their childhood to be free, light-hearted, and joyous.  Help me, Lord, to give them that precious gift.

In the name of Son I pray,

Amen

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