A couple weeks ago my son came home from school so excited to show me he had gotten 6 blue ROYAL tickets. These tickets represent the code of behavior in his school:
O = On-task
Y = Your best
A = Attitude
L = Leadership
I looked at him and expressed how proud of him I was. Now understand, I’m proud of him all the time, both the good and bad days. Later that evening as we drove home from a church event, he asked to call his dad so he could tell him about his tickets. As I listened to him explain with excitement about the tickets, to my surprise, he told his dad he had taken the tickets from his box at school when the teacher wasn’t looking!!
I immediately questioned him as to why he had done so and explained he had been dishonest. I couldn’t understand why he had taken them without permission and I felt horrible about it.
When we arrived home we sat down and I explained to him his actions were unacceptable and that on Monday he would have to return the tickets to his teacher and tell her what he had done. He quickly responded, “But she will be upset with me, Mommy.”
I explained he needed to repent and pray about his actions asking God and his teacher for forgiveness and I was certain they would both understand.
What a teachable moment!!
1 John 1:9, If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
As I prayed later that evening, I sensed God telling me my son just wanted me to be proud of him! Tears streamed down my face as I asked God to forgive me if I’ve ever not been supportive or made my son feel as if I wasn’t proud of him. As I reflected on my own behavior I began to see that at times I unintentionally point out all the negatives with my son forgetting to recognize his positives. In that moment I cried like a baby asking God to forgive me for not taking the time to slow down and encourage my son more than I was.
Psalm 19:12, But who can discern their own errors? Forgive my hidden faults.
The next day I sat down again with my son and asked, “Did you take the tickets because you think mommy is not proud of you?” He replied, “YES, I just wanted you to know that I had been good so you’d be proud of me.”
At that moment my heart sank! What kind of mom unknowingly makes her child think she is not proud of him? Had I been too busy to offer praise of encouragement to my son? I explained to my son I didn’t need a ticket, report card, or anything else for me to be proud of him because I am always proud of him no matter what and my love for him was unconditional.
As I talked with my son that day, God spoke to my heart and revealed that we, His children, often do the same thing. We get so caught up in feeling like we have to earn God’s love with doing more, serving more, striving for perfection, that we spend countless hours trying to earn his approval when in reality God already approves of us.
2 Timothy 2:15, Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.
You see, we don’t have to earn our love or acceptance from God because it’s freely given if we will accept it. He loves us unconditionally with all our flaws, mistakes, selfish ways, pride, untrusting hearts, and so much more.
Just as I don’t need a ticket or good report card to be proud of my son, God doesn’t need us to do anything more than be who he has called us to be in Him to be PROUD of us!
About the Author: Evonne Prince recently got married to her amazing husband on February 28, 2015. Her story is one which reflects God’s grace and mercy in every way. She has endured challenges which should have broken her emotionally and spiritually but through surrender and prayer to God, the author and finisher of her faith, she’s a victor! She has a 6 year old year old son from her previous marriage and he is the apple of her eye. He’s full of energy, has a bubbly personality, friendly, has such a kind loving spirit, and loves Jesus with all his heart. Together they make their blended family. Evonne strongly believes building her family foundation based on God’s principals is essential to being a successful blended family. She actively serves as a volunteer at her church and the biggest blessing for her is serving God together with her family. Being in a blended family, Evonne can relate to the unique dynamics families face from parenting issues, marriage stressors, and extended family situations which cause chaos right from the start. Her writing is pure and honest, writing from her heart with the guiding of the Holy Spirit supported with God’s biblical truths. Her blog stories are written based on her own life experiences and the lessons God teaches her and her family in being a blended family. Also find her on Facebook.
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