There is a large part of me that wonders how my littles will take and hold on to the messages, ever so subtle, that they may receive, even if they are meant in a positive light. Man it's so tricky being a parent!
A couple of times now, Zoe's new gymnastics teacher has pulled me aside to let me know how strong Zoe is, and with a little work she could be flipping over the bar and moving onto the next class. Now honestly I did not feel that this activity would be a strength for my little girl who is so tender, cautious, sensitive and easily hurt (characteristics that I did not really see blending with the sport). So I was really shocked when told this news, although I had observed her holding herself up on the bar and was surprised then. I was not aware that her little arms had any muscle on them....but yet....they must. Her little frame is complements of her father. While I may not be obese myself, I have to work supper hard for it. Her dad, on the other hand, weighed 135 in High School, at 6'3" (bless his heart).
So I proudly told her dad and grandparents what her teacher had told me. That is one thing I want to be described as, STRONG (although I have learned in many ways recently that this is far from the case), so I want my daughter to think that about herself as well. You are strong my darling.
The days following she would talk about how strong she was and how she wanted to be the strongest one in her class....yes she is a bit competitive ....and that sinking feeling began to tug at my heart. THE BEST. How I have fought those underlying voices in my own life in different areas at different times. THE BEST. How it can spur one on to being better and doing one's best....but yet that is different than attempting to be THE BEST. The best will always lead to disappointment, heart-ache and the underling lie that Satan is constantly whispering....YOUR JUST NOT GOOD ENOUGH. THE BEST seems to put the focus on self....and not the Lord. Not acting out of our weakness, not doing so for His glory, but our own, after all if we are THE BEST that means ALL others are below.
The next time I worked out, Zoe was by my side. It was a shorter Tabata style and she stayed with it the whole 30 minutes....using her 3 lb weights and all. I loved having my little 5-year-old workout buddy along side me. We talked about how this would make her stronger in gymnastics. BUT I struggle now...was her heart's desire just to want to be with me, join in on the action, do it because it was fun, or was she working out just to be THE BEST.
Oh my little love, this will be a challenge for you for many years to come (if your anything like me) but I pray, pray that your BEST can turn into wanting THE BEST for Him!