“Though it is the smallest of all seeds, yet when it grows, it is the largest of garden plants…” Matthew 13:32
When my kids were little, it was hard to feel any sense of accomplishment; growing our children is a process that takes time for the results to be seen. I couldn’t wait for them to get older so I could revel in the fruits of my labor.
Now that they’re teens and a tween, instead of seeing the fruition of all my hard work, I’m seeing eye-rolling and push-back as they try to separate from me and become their own people. Some days it can be so extreme I don’t want to be a mother anymore.
That’s why, on Monday, while reading about the mustard seed in Matthew 13, I decided I’m going to be a farmer instead.
When I wear my mom hat, I try to transplant my own ideas, thoughts and values into my kids. It’s a forceful and invasive process as I dig into them, push my ways, and try to make them embrace them. Time after time, like a mismatched donor recipient, my kids reject my efforts, and my motivation dies right along with them.
But If I put on a farmer’s hat, the process is entirely different. My job becomes about nurturing the field of their soul, gently encouraging them, turning the soil of their hearts over to really see who God created them to be. That naturally results in my loving and admiring them more and more. There’s no better fertilizer than that!
Once their soil is rejuvenated and fed, my only job, really, is to plant the mustard seed of God’s love. Once that germinates, there’s no limit to how big it can grow. Firmly rooted in Him, there’s also no limit to who my kids can become.
Question for Reflection:
- When I am trying to teach my kids about God, do I force them to embrace my perspective? Or do I nurture them so the seed of His love grows in them according to God’s power?