“The human spirit can endure in sickness, but a crushed spirit who can bear?” (Proverbs 18:14 NIV)
Back when my husband and I were perfect parents—before we had actual children—we took a parenting class at our church. We were stellar students. We took notes and highlighted things and determined that we would incorporate every single piece of advice the class taught into our children’s upbringing.
Then we had a baby. Instantly, we became imperfect parents. We held onto a few pieces of wisdom we had learned in the class, but mostly we just concentrated on feeding and clothing and caring for our newborn and trying for the love of everything good to get her to sleep.
Thank goodness all imperfect parents have the wisdom of the one perfect Parent delivered to us in the perfect manual. God's Word is filled with wisdom that can be applied to parenting, but the book of Proverbs is a particular treasure trove of resources for parents. We're spending the month in this practical book here at TruthBytes, and this week, I'm privileged to walk with you through chapters 18 - 25.
I'm going to start out today with a confession: I have crushed my children’s spirits. I have crushed them by harsh, angry, loud words and by heavy sighs and by withering glances and by slammed doors and by silence.
I am not proud of this. I am thankful for my children's grace to love me in spite of it all. They inspire me to ask, “God, help me not to crush my children's spirits, but to build them up with You.”
I want to fill my children up with kindness and patience and tenderness and understanding and wisdom. I want to pour into them these pieces of Abba, the One Perfect Parent. And if I can do this, it’ll be better than an A+ in any parenting class.