Childrearing

Jesus Freak: Don’t Ask God To Make Your Kid Pretty

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Jesus Freak: I am a Christian mom who was raised in a fundamental Christian home. I have questioned my beliefs and have come to love myself and God on my own terms. I’m raising my kids the same way.

I think we have all been guilty of praying selfish prayers before. I know I have. Most of the time, my prayers are not very Mother Theresa-esque; they are more often along the lines of getting what I want when I want it so that I don’t have to experience anxiety or unpleasant life circumstances.

It’s so easy to transfer this attitude to the way I parent. I have the same prayers for my kids as I do for myself, many times. God, please make them happy and healthy and safe. Don’t ever let anything bad happen to them because it would upset me too much, and it would make their lives hard.

God forbid I ever step outside of myself and think about how beneficial it can be to struggle, personally and for my kids. I can definitely recognize that there is something wrong with wanting to smooth every bump in the road to make your children’s lives perfectly easy. I’m pretty sure this phenomenon has a name, and it’s called “snowplow parenting.”

I came upon a blog that expresses, very honestly, this sentiment. I’m not bashing this blogger at all because I do understand what it’s like to pray selfishly, and I appreciate her honesty. I also have to say that I 100% believe that God cares about every single thing that I care about. In that respect, no prayer is a selfish prayer, but you can’t necessarily count on God to grant your request for a new car. There are some things you have to do yourself.

The blogger talks about praying to God to “make her daughter pretty” so that she wouldn’t have to struggle with the same body image issues she did:

Ever since I can remember, I’ve been the bigger girl. I outgrew my mom’s shoes in the 5th grade. I couldn’t share clothes with my friends because they just didn’t fit. I dreaded the scales at the doctor’s office every. single. time.

It breaks my heart that I prayed for God to grant her with a tall, slender body and high metabolism. Ugh. I actually prayed that. I didn’t want her to grow up and struggle with the same issues I have. But if my daughter doesn’t dream about fitting into a size two pair of jeans, she’s going to dream about something else.

Again, I truly commend her for her honesty and her clearly loving relationship with her daughter. The blogger concludes with her current prayer for her daughter:

To my beautiful, precious daughter:

Whatever it is that dampens your spirit when you look into the mirror, please know this: God is bigger.

If you want to eat healthy, don’t do it because you want to see a lower number on a scale. Do it because you want God to have power over food in your life.

If you want to live an active lifestyle, don’t do it because you like how you look in tighter clothes. Do it because God can use a healthy person to serve in the Kingdom.

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