My oldest daughter will be 16 in May. We have gone through a rough season of teenage woes. She’s learning who she is. She’s becoming more independent and desiring more freedom. She has been mad at the world (thank God that is over). She wants to argue about everything, and has no filter for her words. She often speaks the truth, but hasn’t yet learned how to tell the truth in love. She also wants the finer things in life and doesn’t understand why I can’t get her everything that she wants even though I have four other children. She calls herself my golden child!
She is now understanding that maturity will bring her more responsibility and freedom. I see her blossoming, yet she still gets on my nerves, lol! Why does her behavior vex me so? Now that we are on a more mature level of relationship, we are able to joke around about some of our issues. She sent me a quote that she saw on twitter that summed it all up…….
“my mom always wonders where I get my attitude from….you homegirl, I get it from you”
I had to laugh at this one. First of all, she is my only child who remembers me before salvation, secondly, because she is the oldest, she knows more about my past through “real talk” conversation.
My mother used to always tell me two things. She would tell me that I need to be a lawyer because I had an answer for and wanted to argue everything. She also would say that I needed to marry rich because I had expensive taste even though she couldn’t afford the things that I wanted.
The truth is, when she behaves in a way that reminds me of the “old” me, my spirit gets irritated and my flesh wants to rise up to go there with her. There is a struggle between my spirit and soul and I don’t want her to have to go through the same things that I went through. I want her to get the revelation of who I am now is better because of Jesus.
There is nothing wrong with her personality. It was designed by God. It just needs to be filtered and cultivated through the Word and the love of God. Her strong desire for truth and unwavering convictions will be very useful in her walk with God. When she sees unjust behavior, if she can learn to pray first, address it in love, and be compassionate; she will be able to help others through deliverance and healing. It’s okay to desire the best things in life, as long as we don’t make “things” our god. God calls us His elect and has given us an inheritance through the blood of Jesus that gives us access to His best. If she learns Who her source is, delights in Him, and is generous in her giving, she will also have the desires of her heart.
Character of the New Man
12 Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. 14 But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection. 15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. 17 And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.
In the meantime, I must put on love that will bond us with perfection. I have to be patient, kind, humble, merciful, and gentle. I have to forgive her as Christ continues to forgive me. Every time she now says in her own words “I get it from you girlfriend”, I must remember that it is my job to help cultivate her character into who God has created her to be. I have to remember that I was once her, but 10 times worse. I have to let her find her way to the Father. Even though she is still my baby, she will soon be an adult. I have to trust her in the hands of God and reassure her that my love for her is unconditional. Although she sometimes disappoints me, there is nothing that can separate my love for her.
Father, we thank You for our children. Forgive us for being too hard on them and forgetting how we used to be. Show us how to be merciful and forgiving. Teach us how to strategically pray for them and lead them toward You. Let our bond be perfected by love. Keep us humble and always searching for ways to cultivate them into who You have called them to be. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen!