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I could see his hands shaking a little bit as he pushed and pushed and finally got the toy in the place he knew it should be. As soon as he did, his little eyes would cut over to me, almost asking, “Hey mom, did you see that!?”
But He knew I was watching, ready to celebrate with him because the whole time that he was persisting, he could hear my voice saying, “Go, buddy! You are SO strong. I am so proud of you!”
And when our eyes locked, he would release the biggest grin, satisfied that he accomplished what he set out to do.
Then the therapist practiced another skill with him and you could tell he was having a little bit of an off-day. Frustrated and just ready to tap out, he let us know, “I’m just not there yet.”
And my response?
“Sledge, mommy is so proud of you! You are SO strong! And it takes a lot of bravery to try again when you’re tired.”
Honestly, I think I was even more proud than before. Because he still was choosing to show up even when it didn’t feel good or success felt far away.
You see, even if he walked in there and couldn’t do a single thing he was asked, my response would be, “Sledge, your mama is SO proud of you. You are so strong! And so brave! And you are mine.”
My face whenever he locks eyes with me? Delight. Absolute, utter gratitude that he is mine.
And the more that I reflect on this, the more my heart breaks thinking that I would ever assume the Father’s countenance towards me is any different.
Pure joy and adoration, no matter what I accomplish, how frustrated I feel inside, or how well I measure up to the standards set around me.
“And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” -Matthew 3:17
“MY SON”—He claims us.
“WHOM I LOVE”—He always begins with love. The affection precedes the doing.
“WITH WHOM I AM WELL PLEASED”—His pride over us has nothing to do with us and everything to do with Him.
Lock eyes with your Heavenly Father—whatever you’re doing today—and feel His radiance + joy over you.
What an absolute gift that is to you and to me.
I pray Sledge finds his greatest perseverance + strength from knowing that—then? there’s no stopping my boy🤍