At times it’s hard to know what our child needs. It could be a baby who has been fed, burped, changed and rocked. But still she cries. It might be a child who has a room filled with toys and a backyard to explore. But still he complains there’s nothing to do. It might be a teenager surrounded by good friends and supportive parents. But still she draws inward.
Sometimes out of frustration I’ll throw my hands up in the air and say, “Well then I guess I can’t help you.” And even though it appears that I’m angry at my child, I’m really angry at myself. Because the truth is that my inability to meet a need causes me to feel like a failure.
But is it really necessary to meet our child’s every need? Isn’t a little discomfort okay? Isn’t disappointment a part of life? And what’s so wrong with not having all the answers?
What is it that our child really needs? While I can’t meet every one of them, some are more important to strive for than others.
A child needs…
- Hope…in a world filled with uncertainty and despair
- Patience…in a touchy world that’s so on edge
- Kindness…in a world where people so easily hurt one another
- Peace…in a world marked by division and strife
- Relationship…in a world that is so disconnected from one another
- Compassion…in a world that judges and condemns
I’m learning that some needs I will never be able to meet. In fact, those are probably supposed to be filled by God anyway—so it’s best I move aside. But there are other needs that I most certainly can meet. Those are the ones I will strive for today and every day.
© 2014, Stephanie Romero