I was recently reading a passage from “The Politically Incorrect Wife” by Nancy Cobb and Connie Grigsby when I was struck by how the advice not only applies to our husbands, but also to our children – especially our step-children:
How others respond to us shapes the way we see ourselves…My (Connie) grandmother’s eyes lit up every time she saw me. She didn’t have to utter a single word for me to feel welcome. I could see the sparkle that radiated from those hazel eyes whenever she looked at me…I felt special every time we were together. She lived on a meager income and left next to nothing financially when she died. But she left me with something that no amount of money can buy – the knowledge that I was of great worth to her.
What is our non-verbal communication to our stepchildren when they arrive at our house? When they walk into a room? When we bump into them in public? Does our reaction to them leave them feeling they are uniquely precious to us or something less than that?
Often in my journey as a stepparent, I have found myself with selfish feelings, uncertain feelings, or feelings of fear regarding the arrival of my stepchildren or any random public interactions. I am usually convicted and feel awful about my falling short in my invaluable role in their lives. Reading this passage in Nancy and Connie’s book, wrenched my heart.
Being a parent means you are called to love the young people in your care unconditionally. To show them God’s love as best we can. To teach them they are precious in His sight by being His Light in their lives.
I challenge all of us unwickedstepparents to make certain when our children enter our presence they have a good landing, and I feel confident, as Nancy Cobb and Connie Grigsby advised, they will feel that sense of how much they mean to us and a good, life long relationship will grow.