Sadie Stratton Wohlfahrt
March 27, 2018
This Sunday marks the most important holiday in our Christian year, and the most important event in all of history. Jesus returned! He overcame death. This week, we celebrate resurrection.
Our own personal walks with God have a lot to do with resurrection- not just the joy of that one day in spring, but the joy of rebirth and renewal every single day. Because Jesus conquered that tomb, we can be resurrected from the tombs of our own making. Or, in the much more eloquent words of Nadia Bolz-Weber: “The Christian faith, while wildly misrepresented in so much of American culture, is really about death and resurrection. It’s about how God continues to reach into the graves we dig for ourselves and pull us out, giving us new life, in ways both dramatic and small.”
So- those of you raising children. Let’s talk. What are the graves we parents dig? What are the mental tombs from which we can surely be resurrected?
Oh, the mommy guilt. Where do we begin?
I don’t give my kids enough attention. I don’t read to them enough. I used the iPad as a babysitter. They are wearing dirty socks to school. We had Chick-Fil-A twice this week.
When did we start feeling so awful about ourselves? Parenting in this generation is different, and harder, than it’s ever been (and it’s always been hard). Let’s lighten up on ourselves. God never promised it would be easy- God promised to be with us always. Let’s breathe in that spirit, and breathe out grace for ourselves.
Regret and worry.
My mom, an eternal fan of Wayne Dwyer, always said “Those are useless emotions. Regret changes nothing about the past. Worry changes nothing about the future. All they do is steal your present moments.”
As parents, it’s time to stop wasting our present moments. Regret is something I lay at the cross every single day, and have to pray hard not to keep picking back up.
I’ve met some pretty anxious parents. The wait-for-you-at-the-bottom-of-the-slide-parents. The don’t-talk-to-strangers-parents. I always want to say “What are you afraid of?”
My husband is still confused (and sometimes a little rattled) by my lack of fear about my kids. “Sadie, where is Ramsey?” “I don’t know, somewhere in the neighborhood.” I am not entirely sure he’s a fan of free-range parenting.
But what do I have to fear? After all, my children have a God (and so many angels) with them all the time. And to take it a step further- they aren’t really my kids to begin with. They are God’s. I am lucky to borrow them for a time.
My hovering won’t prevent anything bad from ever happening to them- but it will prevent them from taking risks, learning from mistakes, problem-solving, and reasoning.
I thank God every day, for my resurrection from the tomb of fear. And in case you are still uncertain about God’s take on fear, it’s written 365 times in the bible. Fear not.
We are really good at judging. We are almost as good at judging other parents as we are at feeling guilty about our own parenting.
Elsa says let it go.
For every set of parent and child in the world, there is another way of being family. What works for you may not work for someone else. One of my favorite sayings is “Don’t should on people.” Let’s just take “should” out of our vocabulary. For ourselves and others.
This is just the beginning, and we both know it. You may or may not have dug a grave of guilt, worry, regret, fear, or judgment. (If you have not, please tell me who tailors your custom, unicorn-sized clothing).
Maybe you are standing in a grave by another name. Maybe its addiction, loneliness, self-destruction, resentment, jealousy, or bitterness. Whatever it is, this Sunday we celebrate that we rise again. And that we rise every day.
If the Spirit of the one who raised Jesus from the dead lives in you, the one who raised Christ from the dead will give life to your human bodies also, through his Spirit that lives in you. Romans 8:11
Grace. Grace. Grace,