(This week, we have the privilege of hearing from our guest writer, Crystal. Below are Crystal's thoughts on Chapter 4 of The Power of the Praying Parent by Stormie Omartian. Please know that what we all learn from a study is usually different. We would love to hear your thoughts on this chapter as well.)
When I first read the title, I immediately thought about the Fruits of the Spirit. Is it a coincidence the first trait Paul mentioned is love? I don't think so. Love is what motivated God to create us, sustain us, and send Jesus to us. 1 John 4:16 tells us, "God is love". Making our children feel love and accepted, at least for me, helps to motivate and sustain me. As Stormie said, a parent's love is the first love our children experience and understand. I pray everyday for God to help me show my girls love and to feel it.
About a month ago (at my hubby's request) I read "The 5 Love Languages". Basically, the book said there are 5 different ways to feel loved. And each of us has our own love language. Example, if a Person A's LL is words of affirmation, and their partner shows them love by spending time together, that's fine and dandy. But Person A will not feel loved because it is not what he needs. I have been secretly quizzing and monitoring my girls to figure out their individual LL. I want to make sure I am giving her the type of love she requires.
Unfortunately, the word 'love' is overly used today. I try very hard not to say I love things like a song or food. I want my girls to know that when I say 'I love", it is serious. Maybe I'm going to the extreme, but I want them to know I don't feel the same about them as I do coffee. (However, coffee is very special to me).
Children want to feel special. Part of that is being accepted. Again, I think this is one of the reasons God warns us not to be of the world. I do not want my girls to feel that in order to be accepted, they have to be a certain size, have a certain eye color, or excel in a certain sport. I want them to know I accept them as a precious gift from God. I want them to know God accepts them whether they are short, tall, clumsy, athletic, or have an IEP. I want to teach them God's standards are what should matter. After all, we were made in His image.
Our children need us to show them love and acceptance more than ever. I tell them all the time, if God is for us, who can be against us? NO ONE! They must always put God first. And I think the Beatles got it right when they said, "All we need is love," because remember...God IS love.
Thank you so much for all of your blessings. Thank you so much for giving me (us) these beautiful, wonderful children. Please guide me (us) everyday so I (we) can show them and give them the love and acceptance they need. Help me (us) to teach them to love and honor You. Help me (us) to teach them they are made in Your image and you make everything glorious.
-Post written by Crystal. Join Crystal again on Thursday as she shares her thoughts on Chapter 5. Thanks Crystal for sharing your thoughts and time with us all!