"Mommy, I cleaned up my room!"
My daughter came bounding down the hallway to tell me she finished cleaning her room. I only had to ask her one-million times before it actually happened but FINALLY it was clean.
She wanted me to come look at her room and see her hard work so I stopped what I was doing and walked to her room with her.
All the way down the hall she was giddy with excitement over her room. She simply could not wait to show me.
As I turned the corner, I realized it was, in fact, clean but not in the way I expected.
It was better than it looked ten minutes ago, but not at all how I would have cleaned it.
She had placed papers and toys around her room and called it her "decorations". The toys were off of the floor but kitchen items were in the book crate and books were stuffed in her play oven like a Christmas turkey.
The bed had all of her stuffed animals on it in one big mass and the craft table was covered in papers she had colored on the day before. Her dresser sits in her closet and the drawers were stuffed full of clothing but not in my usual pattern of "underwear drawer, shirt drawer, bottoms drawer, and pajama drawer". The dress-up rack, that hasn't had a single hanger placed on it in weeks, hosted her little figurines and her little brothers tractor. It was a sight to be seen!
But she was SO proud of herself! I think in her mind she worked so hard because she wanted to make me proud. I never want her to think I am only proud of her when she performs perfectly or even does something in a way that I would.
She spent that time cleaning and decorating and was so proud of herself. I didn't say a word about the job she did. I told her it looked great and that I was so proud of her for cleaning it all up and even decorating! Of course she beamed and went on with her day singing and dancing.
It reminded me that even when someone does something differently than you would, they are not, per-say, doing it wrong.
Did I want perfectly organized toys placed in the correct spot? Absolutely! I am a Type-A, perfectionist, get-it-all-done-yesterday, sister!
However, I didn't want to minimize her hard work over my personal preference.
I thought it needed to look a certain way, but she put in the work and cleaned it her own unique way. She wanted me to be proud of her efforts!
There is not only one way to parent.
There is not only one way to be a wife.
There is not only one way to follow your dreams.
There is not only one way to raise a family.
There is not only one way to be right.
There are no two people alike on earth so what makes us think God intended for us all to be cookie-cutter people?
He didn't! Or He would have made us all the same.
The only thing I firmly believe we all have to have and NEED is Jesus Christ. He is right for everyone. We all need Him equally. Without Him we are nothing, but with Him we are everything (in Him and to Him).
The rest of life is a good mix of His wisdom, our preferences and our experiences.
He is proud of our efforts, friend!
I think if we have placed our faith in Christ Jesus, which means we are His child and will one day live with Him in heaven, then the rest is up to our efforts. The way we live each day to glorify Him and love others. It is truly a walk of faith.
Hebrews 10:38-39 says, "Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul."
He leads. We follow. We daily give it our very best shot giving others the grace to do the same.