Wednesday, November 28, 2012
I Can Be A Super-Model
No, no, not the long legs, size 0, walking the runway in five inch heels type of supermodel. I'm pretty certain that is not a possibility in my future. But I can be a super model.
The other day I was thinking and dreaming about Jordyn; who she will become, what interests she will have, what life choices she will make someday. I realized that even though I want her to make her own choices, I will still greatly influence how she makes those choices.
I thought to myself - how do I get Jordyn to love God? To eat healthy and enjoy exercise? To make good friends? How do I make sure she is going to make wise choices? But it quickly came to me; I don't get her to make good choices, I show her what it looks like to make good choices. I show her by being one who makes those choices on a daily basis. I have to be the things I want her to become.
When I was in college my worship professor once was teaching us about stage presence as a worship leader. He talked about modeling authentic worship on the stage as a way of teaching and leading others into authentic worship. He did not want us to suddenly throw our hands as high as possible and conjure up a look of ecstasy on our faces as a show of worship. But instead, he encouraged us to take our natural stance in worship, and make it just a bit bigger so it can be seen by those in the congregation. If you naturally place your hands palms up in front of you as a sign of openness and surrender, then in a similar fashion as you lead on stage, place your hands out in front of you, and perhaps move them outwards a bit so the expression is authentic, but visible enough for people to see. Model authentic worship for those you are leading.
So now I'm a mom. To a wonderful little girl. In the long run I cannot make her love God, be healthy, or anything else. But I can model these things for her. I can model an authentic Christian life for her - bringing my cares to God, praying out loud for her to hear, being open about my love for God, and what He is teaching me. I can model healthy living - stick to an exercise routine that I enjoy, choose healthy snacks, moderate my sweet indulgences, play with her in active ways. I can model emotional health for her - verbally being ok with my body, enjoying dressing up but not depending on it for my self-worth, showing her it is ok to cry, showing her how to deal with bad days. There are many areas where I can show her through my life what wise choices look like - healthy loving marriage, good friendship, hospitality, generosity, and on and on.
I can be a super-model!
But, just as I cannot force her to make wise choices, I cannot really force myself to make wise choices either. I actually need to become or continue growing in these areas myself to really model them authentically. Not only am I worth it to grow in these areas, but she is worth it too. She is worth the hard work it will take to become healthy in all areas of my life - physical, emotional, spiritual - so that I can model them well.
Thanks be to God, who is the ultimate model of living, who invites me (and all of us) to walk with Him as a child of God, a friend, a wife, a mother. Hallelujah!