Theme for July: Independence
Lucille Zimmerman, counselor, author, and friend, is big on self-care. But…she is quick to point out self-care is not isolation or even independence. Taking care of oneself includes developing and nurturing relationships.
Relationships are the stuff life is made of.
God calls us into relationship with Him. He desires to draw us to himself not because He needs us but because he loves us. Our God is a relational God. For a long time I thought that meant he created humans because he needed us. Nope. God is self-sufficient-his relational needs are satisfied within the Trinity. He doesn’t have to have us around…he just likes to!
Elements of independence are important for our children to have: the confidence to walk way from a bad situation, the ability to say no to peer pressure, being able to discern and think through situations, listening to thoughts stirred by God, the desire to follow a dream not held by another. All these are all good qualities to foster in our children.
What we want to avoid is the seeking of independence from relationship with other people or even God. We are not created to be an island unto ourselves.
We are created for community.
We need to be able to hold each other up and hold each other accountable. Independence does not give us support or conviction.Desirable independence includes God and others in the picture.
Parenting Tip: Help your kids form independent human thought while depending on the Holy Spirit to filter those thoughts. Encourage the development of healthy friendships.(Healthy friendships-according to Lori’s dictionary- are defined by relationships that bring out the best in a person. A friend who draws out in another- the person God created him or her to be.)
Your Turn: What do you do to grow your child’s independence and also foster God dependence?
© LoriWildenberg. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Lori Wildenberg is a licensed parent and family educator, parent coach, and co-founder of 1Corinthians13 Parenting.com. She has written 6 books including Messy Journey: How Grace and Truth Offer the Prodigal a Way Home; The Messy Life of Parenting: Powerful and Practical Ways to Strengthen Family Connections; and her most recent book, Messy Hope: Help Your Child Overcome Anxiety, Depression, or Suicidal Ideation. Contact Lori for your next event or for parent consulting or parent training courses. Lori can also be found mentoring over at the MOMS Together Group on Facebook.