February 25, 2012~ YES indeed, you have read it correctly…some of us are in dire need of GRACE in the hard places!!! So, let’s see if we can chat it out, and find hope, relief, and encouragement as we look into development! You see children are supposed to do so many of “these” types” of behaviors NATURALLY!!! So, as adults do we need a refresher course on grace, or development?? As I am walking this bumpy road with many of my parenting partners, my heart wants to take a quick peek at both!! Let’s look at grace filled parenting first; as if we truly are our CHILD’S best EXPERTS, we must also be students of grace…RIGHT?? Well, maybe we are struggling today…because we war with the aspect that grace is free, and comes with so much unconditional love in the learning moment! Maybe it is because WE truly desire for ALL to be RIGHT with our cherubs, and us so grace seems super unattainable…or possibly, we have never received grace in our own journey as a LEARNER!!! Whatever situation you find yourself in this moment…it is time to BREATHE…take 10 deep breaths, and remember ALL of the wonderful gifts you have received from your cherub…the first one being their very first BREATH of LIFE!!! NOW, activate the grace principles as you know them…YOU are your cherub’s MOST IMPORTANT person of INFLUENCE for this life!! In the tough places, you must dig deep into your heart, anchor yourself in truth, and move forward in discipline, therapeutic interventions, setting new limits and boundaries, or allowing consequences that will teach your child for LIFE!!! THIS IS GRACE FILLED PARENTING in ACTION!!! It is very natural for you to feel upset, frustrated, hurt, and all the myriad of emotions we can go through as parents, but we must have a plan to work them through so we can activate, and reengage with our cherub in a positive parenting position for life! The next steps are some of the easiest, and some of the most difficult…they require looking at our cherub with an honest evaluation of their current developmental level, EQ (emotional quotient), and need for our attention!! The easy part is reviewing developmentally where your child should be, but then the hard part hits…you feel like a boulder has been dropped…because you find that your cherub is LACKING YOU!!! Maybe you have spent fantastic quality time with your cherub, but the entire time you chose what to do, and controlled the interactions as to restrict the back and forth flow of natural parent child communication….are you beginning to SEE why we are actually in our HARD PLACES?? The truth lies within the knowledge that our cherubs STRIVE for US…all of their behavior has a communication, not just saying something on the surface to get a need met, but something deeper, something so ancient…coming to us for healing??? Could it be that we really aren’t living from an authentic place?? Are our children so pivotal for our lives that we struggle against them, only to realize they are our TEACHERS??? Ahhh, some of you are releasing a sigh…you get it now…YES…this is GRACE….GRACE to grow in the hard places with our cherubs!!! WOW…what a gift, what a privilege…the ones that have come to LOVE us so deeply…we GET to receive from???? The ones that have come to CHALLENGE every ounce of our faith, our confidence, our intelligence, our……WELL, YES!!! My dear parenting partners…we are CALLED, we are so BLESSED…Let’s choose to live our GRACE out loud…even in the hard places….our CHERUBS will LEARN lessons that will grow with them into their LIVES!!! Today I choose to call out the BEST in myself and my daughter, and in the midst of that call…I choose to do the HARD parenting stuff, take the stands that will save her life, teach from a heart of love and wisdom, discipline to usher in her own self-discipline, and simultaneously…HEAR and RECEIVE GRACE!!!! ~Sending grace in the hard places to each of you~DK