Wednesday, July 22
Read Proverbs 27
“Mom, what do you like about me”? My almost 12-year-old asked me one afternoon in the midst of our afternoon bike ride. Riding bikes with my girl has become my favorite way to unwind from work as I keep working from home and parenting my kids 24/7 during this season. We both get some much needed fresh air and a change in scenery, and I have the opportunity to enter into my daughter’s world for a full hour. “Honey, there’s so much about you I like,” I replied back “but if I had to choose, I’d say I love how caring you are with your brother, your wit and how willingly you give of your time and affection to others”. She beamed at me with the full confidence of a kid who knows they’re loved…and after a few seconds of silent pondering, she followed up with “Well, what don’t you like about me?”
Everything in me that makes me a mama bear wanted to immediately reply with “nothing….you’re perfect just the way you are!” After all, her ability for self-awareness is still developing and I didn’t want to saddle her with any unnecessary labels (the world already does that for me with no effort) and so I struggled a bit to decide how I was going to respond. My silence earned me a witty “wow, that much you dislike?” To which I chuckled and replied that I was thinking because I was taking her question seriously. As I continued to pedal furiously up a hill, I felt Proverbs 27:17 come to mind. “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”
The concept of “iron sharpening iron” obviously implies at least two pieces of iron. It would be impossible for one tool to become sharper without the presence of the other. Left alone, both blades would be dull and quite useless. This simple Proverb illustrates the importance of building loving relationships with others to help them grow. Because no one has more spiritual influence over my daughter than my husband and me, it was important for me to answer lovingly but honestly. I delivered my decree with quiet unease and then prayed my daughter would receive it as “wounds from a friend that can be trusted”.
On the way home, I said her bravery had inspired me too, and could she identify an area in my parenting I could also improve on. She wasn’t slow to respond and I received my own “wounds from a friend”. But, mostly, I felt thankful. For the wisdom that comes from above, that helps our children grow more Christ-like. If the result is that her blade will be sharper, I’ll never shy away from picking up that iron.
Kayra Montanez, Morris County Campus Pastor
Originally from Puerto Rico, Kayra relocated to New Jersey in 2012 with her husband Jose and their two kids in order to secure the best care possible for her son, Andy, who has Down syndrome. Seeing Liquid’s passion to serve those with Special Needs, Kayra and her husband Jose decided to make Liquid their church home. Kayra serves as the Campus Pastor at Liquid’s largest location.
Ready for a BOREDOM BUSTER? Click the image below.