“Contentment is wanting somebody to be nothing more than who they are.”
Jill Savage of Hearts at Home and author of No More Perfect Kids: Love Your Kids for Who They Are says we too easily put unrealistic expectations on our children rather than being content with who they are. Jill says it starts with us. When we parent from a place of contentment, we can accept our children for who they are and how they’ve been gifted.
This doesn’t mean we can’t cast a vision for them!
“We want them to grow in character; we want them to grow spiritually. I’m talking about accepting the progress and the process that they are in.”
Jill lays it out clearly.
“When I began to embrace God’s perfecting work in my own life, I stopped worrying about what people thought.
And when I stopped worrying about what people thought, I stopped being a controlling parent.
And when I stopped being a controlling parent, I increased my ability to influence each of my kids. And I deepened my connection with them.”
It’s called the “perfection infection.” And Jill calls us to lay it down and pursue being perfected instead of being perfect.
We also all have hope and dreams for our children – but sometimes we try to live vicariously through them. How can we cooperate with God and recognize when that is happening?
Jill’s answer may surprise you – it starts with grief.
“I had to grieve what isn’t and accept what is. I loved being in leadership in high school. I was involved in clubs right and left. I didn’t have a single one of my kids that desired to do anything like that. They’re leaders in their own regard, but they just didn’t have any desire to do student government. I had to accept what is. I had to grieve what isn’t. I think the more we can do that, the more sense of contentment we will have and the more freedom we will give our children to be truly who God is created them to be.”