I have very wise parents.
They have been married for 40 years, raised a family of 5 and love each other more now, than they did all those years ago :). Their secret, to Give without counting the cost.
This simple, but profound moto, is infinitely deep.
Those six words, are summed up in the very act of our Salvation.
God is Love and Love is total gift of oneself.
Nothings impure or imperfect.
Now, I’m not saying my parents are perfect, as they would readily agree, but they ACTIVELY choose to Love each other each day, and that has been their secret 🙂
On our Catholic family camp recently, they spoke about The Law of the Gift and in particular how we need to be “consciously competent” when loving those God has given us.
What is “consciously competent”?
It is a term coined in the field of psychology.The four stages of competence label our process of learning, and “conscious competence” is stage three. See the diagram below…
The reason I want to share this with you, is that this has been significant for me in how I parent! As fantastic as it would be to reach “unconscious competence” as a parent, to be utterly fabulous, a multi-tasking, compassionate, meek & mild, always positive, evangelising super Mum, the reality is quite different!
My Dad spoke at the camp about choosing to stay at the “conscious competence” stage when choosing to love. To always be aware of what we need to do and making a choice to do it, is so important when it comes to love.
Love is not a habit!
Love is a living breathing life force that we must surrender to each day and allow, by our actions and words, to shine out of us.
I choose to be a consciously competent parent.
I choose to be a loving and compassionate parent, slow to anger and merciful in action.
As a mum of four gorgeous treasures, each at different challenging stages, this choice is a LIFE LINE for my sanity!
Yesterday I prayed, begged God to give me the grace to choose… and though not perfectly, I DID CHOOSE! The day handed me many opportunities to loose the plot.
My tin of sewing pins was strewn across my wooden slat floors, creating a forest of upright pins.
Playdough was eaten and squished into carpet.
Ears were not turned on and friendly wrestles became causes of pain.
2 year old rages and screaming weeblies wore patience down like nails on a blackboard.
Excited, energetic dancing and singing caused supermarket hazards.
(after writing all that I feel that I have to say my kids are actually really well behaved 🙂 )
There are days like this, when at every turn you are faced with a choice; to turn into a fire breathing dragon or a lighthouse in the stormy sea.
Yesterday, with the grace of God, I was a lighthouse.
The difference…. miraculous 🙂
In the face of chaos, I had joy. In the front line of rage, I had peace. In the midst of disobedience, I had merciful love.
Today, the challenge is set!
I CHOOSE TO BE CONSCIOUSLY COMPETENT!