For you are God’s workmanship, made new in Christ Jesus to do the good works that God prepared for you long ago. (Eph. 2:10)
Last week, I met a friend for coffee and had the most refreshing talk about parenting. Our children are about a week apart in age. Several other babies were born in our church at that time as well. When our kids were born, the book On Becoming Baby Wise, by Gary Ezzo and Robert Buckman, was all the rage.
I have to say that I love this book. I found many of the principles in this book to be extremely helpful. But the book sometimes prescribed a form of action that didn’t produce the promised results in my daughter, no matter how consistently I applied the principles. Yet all of the other babies in the church provided textbook responses.
At first, I began to doubt my parenting skills. But then I realized that my daughter simply is an individual, created differently and uniquely. And that’s okay.
Back to last week’s coffee outing. In the course of conversation, I discovered a kindred spirit. This mom experienced the exact same frustrations. Her son “broke the mould” in all the same ways. Sometimes it’s nice to know that you are not alone.
Cheri Fuller, in The Mom You’re Meant to Be, says that many parents “look for a formula”. She goes on to say that “the way isn’t a formula. Instead, it’s connecting with God’s heart and with our kids’ hearts.”
According to Ephesians 2:10, we are God’s workmanship. The Greek word for “workmanship” refers to a work of art created by an artisan. Each piece of art created by an artisan is unique and special. No two pieces are the same. Likewise, no two children are the same.
Is it wise to read books and seek advice from those who are more knowledgeable? Absolutely! But don’t expect your child to always produce textbook results. Fuller says that, while you should read books and glean knowledge, “you should not allow one parenting book or program to overrule your own judgment, silence your own heart response to your child, or leave out how God may personally instruct you concerning your child.”
God created your child in a unique and special way. Your child is His work of art! He alone knows your child inside and out. So while parenting books are incredibly important, asking God for wisdom and insight is even more important.
“If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all…” (James 1:5).