Unnoticed Grace: (in)SECURE

If I were to be honest about myself, I’d say that I am very, very insecure. It is not something I’m proud of, but it is something I openly admit. Yes, sadly, insecurity remains to be a giant that I have yet to slay. For as long as I can remember, insecurity has taken many forms in different seasons and relationships in my life… envy, jealousy, anger, distrust, discontent. One word to sum them all up- sin.

Unfortunately for my children, I carry this baggage into parenthood. This time, my insecurity manifests itself through lack of gentleness. I have a four-year-old daughter (who is the older of two). She is a strong-willed little lady, constantly pushing boundaries and testing patience like a full-time job. She is in a season of discovering emotions that for so long have been unknown to her- frustration, jealousy, anger- causing her to be more impulsive with her words and actions. Now is the best time to establish in her heart and mind that she is not defined by her wrongdoings. Every day is an opportunity to model forgiveness and grace repeatedly just as God forgives me over and over again.

But then yelling at her for her misbehavior doesn’t quite deliver the message. Nor does my inability to quickly respond with “I forgive you” every time I she says sorry. The lies come to my mind like poison. “She does not respect you.” “You are unworthy to be a parent.” “She is going to grow up just like you- a failure.”

You see, it is my failure to grasp the truth about me in Christ that causes me to think all this nonsense. No wonder the apostle Paul is intent on reminding the Ephesians of their true identity as God’s children. Unless we understand who we are in Christ, much would be amiss in our lives.

“For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us.” {Ephesians 1:4-8}

This truth is the stone that slays my giant. God’s grace defines me. I am LOVED. ADOPTED. CHOSEN long before the world was created. God calls me worthy to be a part of His family in spite of everything I’ve done wrong… worthy to be REDEEMED by no less than the blood of God’s only Son. God knows my sins of past, present, and future, yet has decided that I am worthy of forgiveness. Still God says that I am fearfully and wonderfully made.

With this knowledge comes freedom… freedom from insecurity… freedom from thinking that I am any less than what God declares me to be. I no longer need to prove anything to anyone about what kind of parent I am. I don’t need my children to turn out a certain way so that later in life I can be given a “Bay Area’s Best Mom” award. Nor do I need to assert authority and power over my little ones. I become free to journey through parenthood with joy, to make mistakes without fear of judgment, to learn forgiveness, gentleness, kindness, and patience alongside my children. Ultimately, I am free to let my life be a reflection not of God’s unfathomable perfection but rather of God’s glorious (yet often unnoticed) grace.




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