Thursday, March 10, 2016

Five Truths to Teach Our Kids About Mistakes

You might have seen my post on Instagram today about mistakes. See, I make plenty of them. And wouldn't you know it? My little apples didn't fall far from this tree. But there are some things that I want them to know when it comes to mistakes and how they should react to them. So here are 5 Truths to Teach Our Kids About Mistakes:1. You will make them. For as much preparation as your dad and I can offer, and no matter how much caution you take, you will misstep. You will miss. You will lose. You will fall and fail. And it will happen again and again. Expecting perfection of yourself is unrealistic, and believing yourself infallible is foolish For all your beauty, you are also a human riddled with flaws. Just like every other human.

2. You can always come to us for help. When the time comes that you fall, and royally screw up, and it seems that nothing can be made right again, you can always come to us for help. Always. Our love is not dependent upon how many times you do things correctly. In the same way that there is nothing so awful you can do to lose the love of your Heavenly Father, your dad and I could never cease to absolutely treasure you.

3. We make mistakes too. We do. More than you can imagine, your daddy and I have made- and continue to make mistake after mistake. Our hearts aren’t always in the right place, and we often choose the wrong path. You must never believe that we will not understand a situation because we’ve not made mistakes, child, because believe me when I say, we’ve made our fair share and then some. We are terribly flawed and imperfect and underqualified to parent you, but we try our best every single day. And when we make a mistake that wrongs you, sweet babies, we will always- ALWAYS- admit our wrongdoing, and ask your forgiveness. Because we want you to know what it looks like to mess up, and be humbled enough to ask forgiveness, and move forward with grace and hope.

4. There are consequences to your mistakes. I would be doing you a disservice if I led you to believe that everything can be undone and rectified when you make a mistake. Big or small, there are always consequences to your actions. Every choice you make affects others, and mistakes can often lead to a chain reaction of negativity. Maybe you’ll lose a friend. Maybe you’ll lose a limb. Maybe you’ll just come in past curfew and get grounded. Either way, you cannot expect to run through this life destroying things around you without some sort of consequence occurring. Use these consequences as a learning opportunity and accept them with humility and grace. But here’s the good news…

5. Your mistakes do not define you. You are so smart and beautiful and wonderful. You have talents and gifts and thoughts and opinions that are uniquely yours. And when you make a mistake, it might feel like your world has begun to crumble around you. You might feel stripped bare and exposed and completely worthless. People might judge you and say things about you- true or not- that are hurtful… and you may struggle to remember who you are. Take heart, babies, in knowing that you are NOT your mistakes. They do not define you. The world does not get a say in who you are. It has already been decided by the one who knows your heart.

I know this is hard to understand right now, when the worst damage you can really do is making messes and not sharing. It can be lonely in your own head, where your negative self-talk often screams louder than the quiet voice that whispers, “you can overcome this… I am using this for your good and My glory…” Find that voice and cling to it. Own your mistakes and learn from them. Hold your head high, and continue to walk forward into your destiny. I love you.


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