Today...my heart is heavy for a friend I love...and while this isn't something that I am currently battling with as a parent...but it is something that I know I will face again and again.
the hard line between loving & guiding our children. when it gets hard.
If one of my boys had a friend that I knew was struggling with a meth addiction....I would not "allow" them to hang out.
If one of my boys was dating a girl that had been labeled as "that girl"....they would not be "allowed" to date.
I put the quotes around "allowed" because I am not dumb enough to think that kids that drive don't have their own free will. They totally do.
But you see, by me offering the boundaries, I also set them up to make a decision.
Do they defy our rules in our household?
Or do they step outside of those and go their own way?
Now.....everyone that is a parent of any age....also knows that "going our own way" has risks, and consequences, and more importantly, life lessons.
While I would love to spare my kids from a few hard life lessons, I can't be a helicopter mom and control their every move.
So, this brings me (us) to my (our) right as a parent.
While you live here, and I provide you with all of the necessities of life (yeah, like your iPhone...duh!)....then you grant me the rights to continue to parent you.
And that means it is ok for you to hate me, because you are grounded.
But you are grounded.
Believe it or not....I am helping you make some decisions that you can't yet make for yourself.
Because I love you.
And I call sin, sin.
Because I love you.
And God calls me to the mat on things.
Because He loves me.
But never once ever---not once. NEVER. does He discard me. Or disown me. Or stiff-arm me.
Nope. He loves me.
He has the right to discard me. and disown me.
Yes, He does, because of the way I act sometimes.
And, so in turn...I as a parent, should extend that same grace.
Love. with boundaries and guidance. But Love.
The key is that it always begins and ends with love.
But, dang it, why does parenting have to be so hard!