Dear Melody,

Today we had a moment when my heart swelled with joy over a small thing that to most probably seems insignificant. You were getting yourself a glass of ice water in the kitchen when you dropped an ice cube in the floor. You didn’t know I was watching as you kicked it several times across the floor and underneath the stove. When you turned and saw me standing there, your countenance dropped and shame flushed your features.

“Why did you do that?” I asked you. “Oh, sorry,” you said, flustered, and bent down to try and reach under the stove. “Melody, it’s clear from your reaction that you KNOW that was the wrong way to handle that. Why did you do it?” You dropped your eyes for a moment, then looked back up into my eyes. “I know it was wrong. I just didn’t feel like picking it up. I’m sorry and I won’t do it again.” I drew you close in a hug and thanked you for being honest with me.

After I thought about it a few minutes, I wanted to say more. So I told you that I was very proud of you for not making excuses and for being honest and owning your mistake. You and I have been talking more lately about the fact that Jesus lives in your heart and because you love Him, the best way to show it is to live in a way that pleases Him. And we know honesty makes Him happy. . .And I truly believe that owning a mistake makes Him happier than not making any. . .and so I told you this. I told you I see you growing in your faith and it makes my heart happy.

This little moment in time might seem insignificant to many, but not to me. Because I parented you with a lot of punishment as a toddler, you learned to do what you could not to get in trouble. Since we’ve been trying to focus more on discipling you than training your behavior, this small incident was a huge window into the fact that you’re getting it. You’re learning that being honest about your feelings and motivations is more important than dodging our displeasure. And I hope it means I’m doing a better job encouraging that level of honesty in you. . .helping you understand that you can be honest with me about anything and trust me to respond the right way.

Because I want to know you, little girl. The sweet parts and the broken human parts. The kind, thoughtful parts and the selfish, fearful parts. All of you. And by knowing you and loving all the parts of you, I’m learning a bit more about how to love all the parts of me. Thank you for sharing yourself with me today.

Love, Mama

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