The fourth way to create a connection to our child’s heart is being vulnerable.
For the past 13 years I have been mentoring teen girls. I actually started doing this when my own children were in elementary school. Pouring into teen girls has been one of the Lord’s greatest gifts to me. I was allowed to see into the heart of a teen before my own children were in this stage of life and from an angle other than that of a mother.
Often the girls would share:
“I wish I could talk to my mom like I can talk to you.”
“I wish my mom would tell me about her life growing up.”
Now that my own girls are teens I know that the relationship I had with those girls was different because I wasn’t their mom. But still I did learn that as a parent I need to be vulnerable.
It is so important for our children to know that not we were not perfect when we were growing up. I’m not advocating parading our sin nor giving our kids every detail of what went on, but we do need to be real. Real about our past and real with the trials and temptations we struggle with today. Many of my sins and struggles are heart and mind issues; which may not as apparent to my kids as their every day trials. Yet I try to be open with my struggles of jealousy, being judgmental, and discouragement.
My first book “His Revolutionary Love” was rejected 19 times before I found a publisher. Every time I was rejected, I let my kids know (most of the time they saw the rejection on my face and in my tears!) I let them know how I felt and hopefully allowed them to see how I went to the Lord to have Him comfort and encourage me.
When have you been able to share your struggles?