The clock is ticking towards the Day of the Mother.
It’s supposed to be good. It’s supposed to be fun. It’s supposed to be a feel-good day to celebrate and be celebrated. All about flowers and Hallmark commercials and breakfast in bed and love, love, love.
But for many among us it’s a day of dread. Of obligation and angst and walking on eggshells. A day to protect yourself in a stiff layer of don’t-go-there carefulness lest someone says the wrong thing and all hell breaks loose.
It doesn’t have to be that way.
Remember what I wrote yesterday? One of God’s names is Ga’al, Redeemer. He is the One who wins people back to Himself by pursuing and loving and paying the price to bring them close to His heart again.
And He uses people— broken, messed up, redeemed people to His job.
It’s crazy, I know, but that’s the way He decided to do redemption. Instead of writing His love in the sky, He chose to write it in words… and then He gave those words to us… and now He wants to use us to do those words for people.
For our daughters, for our sons, for our own mothers.
Are you willing? All excuses cast aside? Ready to be used by the Redeemer to win back something that belongs to you? To do what it takes to restore a relationship broken by sin and failure and regret and just plain yuckiness?
SIX WAYS TO FIX WHAT IS BROKEN…
between you and your daughter
1. Listen to her (James 1:19)
I mean really listen. Listen to hear her heart, to understand what she’s saying— and what she’s not. Do not listen with the intent to defend yourself or attack her!
2. Apologize to her (I Peter 5:6,7; Ephesians 4:30-32)
I know, I know, there are a million reasons you did what you did or said what you said. None-the-less, you hurt her. She needs to hear you say it, to know that you’re honestly sorry, that if you had it to do over again you’d do it differently.
And she won’t trust you until she hears it said— and said well. A full on apology involves these words, “I am sorry for______________, I know I hurt you. I was wrong. Please forgive me. I love you.”
Leave out the excuses, the explanations, the history, the “but you…” and just take humble responsibility for the wrong done.
3. Accept her (Romans 12:3-16)
Every woman I know longs to feel accepted by her mother. And most of us don’t. All those years of training and correcting and disciplining your daughter have an end point. By the time she’s moving on and married and all grown up a great big switch needs to be pulled. And past that point mothers should not, ought never, must not critic or compare or hint at the slightest bit of disappointment with who her daughter is… or how she does life differently than you do.
4. Approve of her (Ephesians 5:29)
This is different than acceptance. This is about finding the beauty in your daughter and holding it up for all the world to see. A mother who notices and relishes her daughter’s beauty is… beautiful! And rare.
This kind of approval is proactive. It is obvious and honest. It involves a mother who purposely sets aside her own hopes for her daughter and allows herself to relish who she really is. Out loud. A lot.
5. Enjoy her (do we really need a Scripture verse for this one?!)
You’ve worked so hard. All those late nights worrying. All those trips to the mall and the doctor and the school. The gymnastics and the horseback riding lessons and the awkward learning to be a woman stuff— now she’s grown and you get to just enjoy her! She’s not your responsibility to tuck in and fix and polish up anymore. Throw a party! Have fun!
6. Give to her (Luke 6:38)
Most mothers I know never stop giving to their children, even when they’re all old and wrinkled and creaky. But rarely does a mother ask her daughter how best to help her. Instead, we assume we know our role and sometimes we’re wrong. In fact, we’re usually wrong. The simple solution is to ask. Straight up: “How can I best be of help to you at this stage of your life?”
Then do what she says. And do it well. And keep asking. And don’t stop asking and helping her until you’re just so old and wrinkled and creaky that you honestly can’t anymore.
Just six simple possibilities.
Six wholly Scriptural ways of restoring relationships.
Six fully female approaches into the heart of your daughter.
Will you count the cost, take up your cross, and follow the way of Jesus? The way of redemption? Will you be like Him with your daughter?
Remember what I wrote at the beginning of this post?
“He is the One who wins people back to Himself by pursuing and loving and paying the price to bring them close to His heart again.”
May He work wonders as you follow in His ways,
From my heart,
Today… look up those verses, girls! They’re rich with wisdom we need.
Coming next week… Redeeming What is Broken Between You and Your Son and Redeeming What is Broken Between You and Your Mom