See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!
1 John 3:1 NIV
There is no such thing as a perfect parent. As a parent that is a relief. As a daughter, not so much. We have all been made to crave certain things from a healthy child parent relationship. Nurturing. Love. Acceptance.
Yet the nature of any close relationship is that there will be wounding. No one gets it right all the time. There will be disappointment. Unmet expectations. Unmet desires. Unmet needs.
A friend of mine, author & speaker Erica Wiggenhorn recently wrote reflecting upon a prayer she prayed as a new mom not to mess things up:
I remember God whispering to me in the quietness of my heart, “If you are a perfect mom, why would she ever need her Heavenly Father? It’s through your mistakes that she will learn about grace – offering grace to others, to herself, and most importantly, receiving the grace I offer through my Son. You won’t do this perfectly, you’re not supposed to.”
Therein lies the truth – if parents were perfect, we wouldn’t feel the need for God. All our hopes, desires and dreams would be met by a person, not God. We wouldn’t feel the sting of disappointment. We wouldn’t feel that longing deep inside for that perfect relationship. To be known completely. To be perfectly understood. To be accepted and loved unconditionally.
The gap between our hopes, our desires, our dreams and reality is where we can not only find grace but find God. God is the only perfect parent. When we feel the sting of disappointment, God knows our pain. He understands us completely. God even understands us better than we understand ourselves, because he made us to be exactly who we are. He gave us the longings we have with the hope that we would look to him for their fulfillment.
What about those who don’t have parents or parents that didn’t step into their role as a parent? Take comfort in knowing we are children of God. Even if the parents we have been given here on earth don’t measure up, we have a God in heaven who does.
Whenever we feel that sting or disappointment, remember we are children of God. Daughters (or sons for my male readers). Beloved. Chosen. Treasured. The only perfect parent we will ever know is God. God loves us perfectly as only he can. Walk in the confidence and freedom as a beloved daughter of God.