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56. Lack Of Control, Unmet Expectations And
Realigning Expectations - Nat Grady

June 21, 2022

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Mentioned in this episode -


Psalm 23

Psalm 8

Author Melissa Kruger

Gloria Fermin's book 'Treasuring Christ'

CCBC Kids Sing -


Laura: Hi, Nat and welcome to unsung stories. Thanks so much for joining us. 

Nat: It's my pleasure,

Laura: just so that our listeners can get to know you a little bit more. Could you tell us a bit about you and your family and what everyday life looks like for you?

Nat: Yeah, sure. So I'm not, I'm married to James. And we have four boys. So they're age 10, 8, 7, and two. Yeah, and it's it's pretty loud. Yeah. Our two year olds with us in long-term foster care. , we live in Southwest Sydney. We're at Campbelltown Baptist church. , everyday life is just, looking after the family hanging out with a two year old and occasionally doing some casual teaching. The local high school. And also, do some stuff with church. So playgroup women's ministry and I'm trying to catch up one-on-one with some ladies as well. And on the side, sometimes I make up some memory verse songs for you. 

Laura: Yeah, that's really cool. I'm keen to hear more about that a bit later. I'm sure we can get onto that, but you're saying your oldest is 10. So your 10 years is, yeah, that's pretty good in a job, like a long service leave. I'm wondering what were your expectations for parenting? 


Nat: So before I became a mom I think I had many expectations or perceptions of motherhood that were probably not that realistic in what way? So I'm a pretty type, a kind of person. Pretty structured. And before I had my first baby, I'd read all the books about, bringing up babies, baby wise, all those kinds of books. When we had our first boy, I actually thought I was doing all right. felt like I had things under control. But yeah, when the second boy came along he was completely different. So he didn't follow the routines. Really do anything that out first what he did. , that brought out a lot of anxiety and. I didn't really cope too well at the time. But that's probably a different story.

I ended up seeing a Christian psychologist which really helped. But I think, yeah, the biggest expectation probably that I had was that I could control my kids or that I could. Control their behavior and, they would obey me and behave , probably a lot of self-reliance which I think definitely became and still sometimes can be an idol in my heart.

I remember one moment when we when we had our first born, I think he was a few months old. Someone gave us some advice to make sure that they're trained by the time they too. And we didn't know these people well, but I know they were coming from a good place in that.

I'm sure they just meant, the first two years are really important for establishing authority and all that stuff, which I really do agree with, but I guess what I took away. you've got until two. So if they don't have, yeah, 

Laura: I'd be really curious how that that's a very helpful line to give if they can just follow it up with how I get the theory, but I'm also, I don't know how you could do that Healthily. Well, I don't know. Cause like we're parents with our kids, but I think. Stories are sounding similar and how I would have had them under control with my first. I don't know if he's healthy. I wasn't healthy then anyway.

Nat: No, I definitely I've changed a lot since then, but I think I think probably what I took from it. Was that if they don't obey you, first time, happily and properly, by the time they're two or, they don't know that your boss, by that time you've lost your chance lost. You've lost them. 


Laura: And just thinking coupled. So we read baby wise and I know there's people who love it and I was one of those people, but I'm also like, that's my biggest parenting regret. But so when you have that baby wise mindset, along with your needing to have them under control by two. I get what you're 

Nat: landing and I think there's a lot of good things. Like it's not all. Yeah. But, and I, yeah, I just think my structured probably like inflexible nature was what I do regret probably from that first, those first couple of years. Yeah, baby wise 

Laura: kind of gives you that. This is how you can mean control. This is how you can control the outcome. It's just as I've gone on I don't think that's healthy for anyone, but some really great strategies and advice I don't want to.


Nat: Yeah, no, that's wrong. Yeah. But I think, I suppose maybe it depends on your personality, how you take it as well. . I guess when I went in with those expectations, like when the boys turned two and three and four and so on, and they weren't magically obedient or they, student obey every time how I wanted or they still fight, they can still have hard hearts against each other, and against me I think that definitely brought out yeah.

Feeling of failure and kind of unmet expectations, which. Probably take or took and still sometime to do take way to personally, yeah. Yeah. And I think, like I say this, and I'm still struggling with this. So I still even today I had a phone call from one of our boys teachers about his behavior in class.

And and I'm like, I still get upset. It's not like he, I dunno, it's I haven't got it all together. 


Laura: He can be disappointed because they still do the wrong thing and you can still be upset or disappointed in their behavior. Maybe I think what you're saying, or maybe I'm projecting here, but that it would destroy me before it was like, I was a failure, whereas actually, no, this is just. They're kids and this is a learning opportunity and this is what he's struggling with 


Nat: to help. Yeah. So maybe I wouldn't have been like in as much despair as I would have been if it was like five years ago when I was getting this phone call, 


Laura: I wonder if there's a lot of, at least what, with what I just said of how I feel is this underlying perception of that I'm not perceived like I'm in control or that my kids are a certain way. It's actually got nothing to do with me, 

Nat: but a hundred percent definitely. Yeah. So 

Laura: you noticing this stuff, that's not what you wanted. Your motherhood journey to look like, or your kids weren't behaving, how you wanted to, what did it bring out in you when it wasn't going to, how you pictured when you weren't having the control, you 


Nat: thought you'd have. Yeah. Yeah. And as I said, still struggled with this, but I think honestly it brought out anger, so anger at unmet expectations and that desire for control. If they didn't know bay or listen or whatever I would go straight to anger. , probably emotionally reacting to situations instead of calmly reacting or responding. And disciplining in anger as well, yeah, just, I think it's really a pride thing. So my pride seeking my own glory or reputation from their behavior or from my own mothering. And I think, just taking their behavior as such a reflection of me.

Just taking it so personally I definitely still need to repent to my kids. And to God, when I react like that, And probably with them, cause we both need your users. God's been exposing my heart and that real kind of self-reliance or self-righteousness over the years.


Laura: Yeah, that's hard. And I think, that's very similar to what a lot of us experience or you and I are just very the same. But I feel like it's this bit of a crisis feeling. This is not how I thought it would be. I thought that I'd have more control or I thought that they would be more obedient these, or, just that.

I thought really? What help do you, as you sat in these big feelings? 


Nat: Lots of things, I think. This is 10 years of learning and praying and repenting and God teaching me through his word it's not just an overnight fix as much as. Really love and desire that kind of quick fix in many situations I was even talking my husband this afternoon. What do we do? What is the thing that we're missing or the thing that we can fix this behavior or whatever it is if I could 


Laura: just find the perfect thing to do and 


Nat: yeah, that's it. Yeah. And what am I doing that? Or what am I not doing that I should be doing that, even 


Laura: just as you're talking there, so thinking about, I know your son in class, or actually in class, But it's not us. We can just magically do these things and then they'll perform good in public like this. How do we  teach our kids?


Nat: I'm not sure. Yeah. Yeah, no, that's the thing. , I think for me, like there were definitely a few books and like talks that I heard over the years that have been really helpful. One was Paul Tripp's book and he, and some of his talks on parenting. But I'll poetry. Yes. Love is. I need to reread that whole book again. 


Laura: Yeah. And I was just thinking, I need to read it. I should probably bookmark it every year in my canvas. So good for orientating, your perspective to being, ah, 


Nat: yeah. Yes. That's a priority. That's right. Yeah. And I think Gloria Fermin and Melissa Kruger also wrote some books on motherhood that were really helpful for me. Yeah. And also just having other Christian moms at church. So especially those who have like kids that little bit older than yours can be such an encouragement and really helpful for us moms. I've got one. I had one really dear friend in particular, who has kids just the next stage ahead. 

And I remember going to her when my third baby was born. I had three boys age, like three and under. And I was just like, teach me going to and saying questions, like, how do you discipline your kids in this circumstance? Or how do you deal with routine or quiet time, or how do you deal with sibling fights and all this, implemented Bible time and stuff like this.


Laura: And isn't that just like the tightest tune? What all in yes. In practice, like often I think when if you're studying, it's oh, we should be sitting down having that formal one-to-one. Mentoring, which is great, but just to have that woman, you're like, oh, they just won't stop fighting.


Nat: What worked for you? Yes. Yep. And what did you do? Like when, how did you teach them? Like character and patients and making peace and I dunno, all sorts of things. Yeah. 


Laura: Even not. What did she do? Now that she's got hindsight, what did she wish she did? It's so helpful having woman.Oh that didn't really work for us. You could try it, or these things worked, or my friend did this and that was great. Or I actually just read a blog post recently and I could have just seen that working so well. All of those different things that you can try from one place. 


Nat: And I think as well, like some of those moms, so this mom I'm thinking of pointed me to, a lot of those books that I was saying and things that I was like not really aware of.


Laura: And it's like the ultimate Google. You know what I mean? You're a first time mom and know just googling everything because you've got no idea what you're doing. And then your second, you oh, I know all the Google answers of what I could try. So it's a bit easier. Now I'd love to know where you've landed in all of this wrestling. So you've noticed the hard stuff coming up. Wrestling with that, where you're confronted with your scene and where you're falling short. What did you learn in that whole process? 


Nat: Yeah, so it's hard to sum it all up probably. I think as well, cause I'm still learning, as we go, I think. They probably were a couple of main truths that I've learned. And tried to remind myself of in mothering, especially when having those feelings of trying to control or relying on myself and stuff like that.Unmet expectations. Yes. I think the main one honestly, was probably don't look to your kids or your mothering for your identity. So poultry talks about this in his book parenting and he says there's two places. We can look for identity, horizontally or vertically. If we look horizontally with, we searched to find ourselves in our reason for living in something in creation. Maybe our children or how we are as mothers or we could look vertically which is where we getting our identity from God from his love and acceptance, his forgiving grace from his power and promises. , I do fall into the trap of trying to get my identity from my children at times. It's shown by. How, personally, I can take their behavior. And sometimes how I take too much credit for their good, and too much responsibility for their bad. Yeah. Pork poultry says this quote. He says parenting is a miserable place to look for identity. Think about it. Your parenting lost rebellious, foolish blind self ruling, sinners. And it's a crushing burden for your children to have to get up every morning and carry the heavy load of your identity and meaning and purpose and all the expectations and demands that flow from it. No child will carry that load. Oh that's the thing, sometimes we look to sinners, for our identity, which is too silly 


Laura: or that when you put the characteristics of humans or God, and, but we go to the humans, but also I think, like to follow that up with that, he's a huge burden on our kids and not really fair on this.


Nat: Yeah. That's the thing. Think that truth really hit me. Can't give us what God can, they can't give us life sturdy, hope, worth peace of heart, desires, strength to go on. they can't give us that ultimate heart satisfying love that we long for only God can. We need to look up vertically for that satisfaction in him. 


Laura: Then that kind of flows on out through to everything else. 


Nat: Yeah. Another thing that Paul Tripp says, actually, which is really good is to remind ourselves our kids are gods, they're not our own. Belong to the God who created them and they're his possession for his purpose. And he loves them even more than we do. He talks about how we are ambassadors and not owners. So we are representatives of someone greater, wiser, more powerful and more gracious than us. Our job is to point them to Christ. We actually have no power to change. Or their hearts or their behavior, but we can have the blessing of being used by God in his work for his glory. That's crazy. Yeah. And I think as well, I love actually Jen Milken center talk about, I think I can't remember exactly what it's called, but it's about how children are. Our closest neighbors our mission field is actually at home first to those little people. So I guess, yeah, we have the privilege of being able to point them to Christ, 


Laura: and I think that makes it much easier when, like you said, our job is to point them to Jesus. When often we get distracted with all the other things that we think our job is. But when we have that. Primary goal that we're working towards. Then all the other things pale 


Nat: in comparison. Yeah, that's right. Remembering that truth. Yeah. 


Laura: What else have you been learning?


Nat: Yeah, another point would be that I need, and I have God's grace in motherhood. We need to remember that we have a loving heavenly father who sent his beloved son into the world to give us grace to forgive our sin, to free us from slavery to sin. And to make us right with God. There's nothing more important for us to remember them that truth. I need to remember to turn to. And to ask for grace and mercy, especially to respond to they're fighting or their disobedience, with gentleness. Instead of the snapping or the, straight to anger. Wow. 


Laura: I think that as we are doing that, aligning ourselves to Jesus and what his plans and purposes are for us in motherhood. And I think with that comes putting to death, our sin because we are trying to become more like Jesus those things become easier to manage because. We're dealing with Sen and our priorities are right rather than saving ourselves and what we want from this life 


Nat: and for my kids. Yeah. Yeah. I definitely have found that I've grown bit by bit in that. Definitely not perfect, but God's definitely sanctifying me in those ways to be. A bit more empathetic or a little bit more patient in my first response. And I think as well, it does come with kids getting older, so I'm getting older. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. And I think probably especially if you've got a 10 year old or an eight year old, you can have more of a conversation with them, after an incident which can really be very like pointing them to go on and saying, we, we need him we both need him, we can't really do any of this in our own strengths, or efforts or wisdom. And it's the same with us moms. Like we, but we don't have to because we have God in us. I need to constantly rely on him more than myself. I can't do any of this in my own strength or wisdom or efforts. And we don't have to, because we have. In us, which is huge. We have him in every moment of every day. When I rely on his grace, I actually have more grace or have grace to give the kids too. I see that I'm actually more. More like my children then I think we're both sinners in need of Jesus. , I think this helps us give grace to our kids because we both need it. And we need to confess to our kids and show them about our need for Jesus as well. That real relationship is really important to have with our kids, that honest repentance and being able to chat empathetically with our kids about whatever the incident was , even if there still has to be a consequence being honest and showing our need for Jesus as well.

Laura:  And I think that's really helpful. Okay. I think I say this a lot on the show, but where that's modeling what it means to be a disciple. When our kids are adults and they stuff up to go, actually my mum and my dad stuffed us. That's okay. It's what I do with it in that moment. That really matters. If I'm going to tell the truth and say, sorry, or I'm going to make it right. I did make a mistake, but I'm going to make it right here.


Nat: And how you handle failure? Yes. And I think, sometimes some of our boys have a tendency of going, oh, I'm the worst. You know what I'm just. So bad, like when they, when they get in trouble and going straight to that , I guess showing them and trying to talk them through, that's not what we're saying we're not saying you have to go to despair, but yeah, 


Laura: and then even the mistakes are going to be part of life. This isn't something that you're going to, we're just teaching you how to. Good adult do you know what I mean? You're never going to stop making the state and it's just, we're teaching you how you fix them. 


Nat: Yeah, that's right. I think like with the empathetic kind of thing just a side note, actually our fostering journey so far has helped us grow a bit in that kind of giving grace as well. Great. So in the training to become foster carers, there's a really big focus on empathy and curiosity and acceptance in parenting. And I guess away from that traditional or authoritarian kind of parenting. I think that helps that's helped us in parenting just in general, just to approach the kids a bit more gently and with empathy and understanding. Yeah, 


Laura: I really like what you said about curiosity, to just approach this thing that I'm not exactly liking, but what's going on for you here. Can you explain the situation often? I think I just assume so much about the situation, or what they're thinking or feeling but having that curiosity would be a great way of connecting with them and working with that. That's great. Yeah. 


Nat: So going I wonder if, I wonder if he did this because you're feeling,  I guess wondering about it and also responding with empathy and doing the whole, I can see how difficult this has been for you, showing them that you actually do care. And I guess instead of maybe just flipping our lead as they call it in the training, just stopping, taking a breath more, we just react, 


Laura: yeah. And that's really helpful because sometimes I think we were saying before, but there is behavior that you will have a reaction to because they have done wrong. But if you can start that conversation off with establishing relationship and connecting with them and going forward from a connected that's really helpful. And I haven't teenagers, but I imagine that would be helpful practice for us to practice for when we do have teenagers. Although maybe I'm just thinking. I can plan the teenage years. 


Nat: No, I think definitely showing that understanding, they can come to us and we can maybe not straight away go into monster mode, they can come to us 


Laura: and in all of that, the practices on us for us to be self-regulating and putting our own big feelings aside to 


Nat: coach them. Yeah, probably the final point I would say is in Morgan has been teaching me is what I've actually heard a lot of other mums on your podcast site which is so true. We didn't know how sinful we were until you became a mum, and I think God is sanctifying us and using our parenting to expose the, sometimes sinful desires of our hearts and grow us in inpatients , closer to him day by day. I think he's changing us along with our kids for his glory. , the moment where I have to stop what I'm doing and get up and discipline or, step in to deal with a sibling fight or whatever it is.

It's not just an interruption for what I want to be doing at the time at that moment, but he's actually using that moment to shape me as well. And an opportunity to point the kids. To our need for Jesus. It's in those moments that I need to pray that God would help me keep that eternal perspective in the moment, which can be really hard when you're, not really feeling.


Laura: Yeah. Right at the beginning you were saying that, our job is to point them to Jesus and that that stepping in to help with say the sibling argument, that's run with that theme. When the sibling argument comes or they're being disobedient and all of those things that frustrate us and feel like those moments where there's that oh, I can't believe I'm dealing with this. I just want to get on and do the job of parenting, but actually they're the jobs of parenting, their main part of where we're teaching them to be like, Jesus. As I'm getting ready in the morning, this is a bit of a tangent, but as I'm getting ready often, I feel like I'm playing like that super Mario game anyway. There's bananas and they make you go yuck. And I'm like, there's just so many bananas around that I'm sitting on. If we could just get ready and get out the door, but it's actually the bananas that are the teaching moments. I think that's what I was trying to say. 


Nat: Poetry says, somewhere in one of his talks if you're walking down the hallway to deal with that sibling fight or whatever, and you're just so angry, in your heart, you're probably not going to think this is an opportunity, like this great opportunity for me. Help these children to help them to regulate and to be kind to one another and to work things out and, but I think that's the thing. Those are the little moments, even the all-time interruption for you or thing.

Laura: I think the goal is let's get our bags, pack data in the car. But the goal actually is 


Nat: that people work. Yeah. Yeah, that's right. 


Laura: I found that also helpful and encouraging. Wondering if there's anything practical that you've done over the years to, combat the sin that you're seeing pop up in you or just to. Help do that job of pointing our kids to Jesus. 


Nat: Yeah. I think honestly this is a very, cliche, Christian answer, Jesus, God, the Bible. But it's being in God's word. I have to be in God's word and journey to him every day. . Reading the Bible or even listening to it each morning has just been so important in remembering that my identity is in God. I just get so easily distracted or, so easily forget the gospel and what he's done for me. I love how Jonathan Edward says to stamp eternity on our eyeballs. 


Laura: Even like right back in, is it Deuteronomy where it's like write this on the doorframes of your house, bind it on your wrists, all of that kind of imprinted on your children.

Nat: Yup. Yup. That's right. 


Laura: He's encouraging that was written thousands of years before Jesus. So then she met at, he hasn't changed.

Nat: Yeah, I think yeah, like I think we do, we need to daily come to him. To get that eternal perspective, and 


Laura: in different seasons, I'm sure going from a 10 year old to a two year old yet that there's different seasons and it's easier. Fourth time round to acknowledge that. Some days that is through your kind of memory, verse, scripture singing, or some days you get to have that full hour Bible study.

Nat: And it's brilliant. I was driving in the morning one day this week and Oh, it's because I, sometimes I struggle with prayer. Like I struggled to stay on task, stay focused and I wanna praise God. And I'm like, oh, I don't have the words. But then I was like, hang on. I do know a couple of verses or I do know a couple of 'em like, I know, we've memorized Psalm 23 and Psalm 8. And so I'm like, why don't I just recite? those Psalms. Even though that morning, I didn't actually get to open my Bible before getting out the door. Being able to be near God with his word that's already in you and saying those things and praying to him through that, like he's also like reorientating your heart. Yeah. 


Laura: It was making me think of like people's vision boards say, they had. Put the holiday or the drain body or the whatever. It's the same thing where just keep looking at your vision board. What's in your brain of God and orientating him meditating on. That's you're using what you have. Yeah. 

Nat: Yeah. I love Gloria Fermin's book treasuring Christ, when your hands are full, that's another one that I have to reread. Yes, but she talks in one of the chapters. She talks about how we can get parental amnesia. Sometimes we might be doing all the tasks, like supervising homework, cooking dinner, stopping the like toddler from biting the seven year old checking if the washings drive. Uniforms for tomorrow, a big list. Yeah. All these things. We can forget, we can forget eternity. We can forget that our children are marching towards toward destiny, and that those ordinary moments have meaning and eternal significance. The way that God stands. Eternity on our eyeballs, he's by his word reading the truths of God's word most mornings helps me to remember God, his promises, his grace and to hope in him and not in myself or in my circumstances. 

So loving the Bible and letting the kids see. That importance for me as well. They do watch us. , we pray that they see a genuine love for Christ in us. , that they can see us treasuring Christ, even in the midst of temptation to sin or in suffering or whatever circumstance it is.

When we turned to Jesus in those times, they take notice. I like that 

Laura: parental amnesia. 

Nat: Yeah. It's really good. It's a great chapter. I need him. 

Laura: And you said marching towards the destiny, that's pretty confronting. What is that destiny going to be? Yeah, we're studying John at the moment. The chapter that we've just done in Bible study was either God is your father or the devil is your father. And it's that same thing with this destiny is like, where are they ending up? What are they marching towards? How can I be helping them March towards a destiny of eternity with God?

Nat: Yeah. Yeah. Obviously nothing we can do, we'll save our kids. But I think. 

Laura: We are called to do our job. Our job is to raise and point them to Jesus. So how can we practically do this? 

Nat: Yeah. So for us, we read the Bible with the kids at breakfast time. Cause that just seems to work for us where we're at the moment. I guess when they go to high school, maybe they'll have earlier mornings and it might be. Harder in the morning. But for now this is working. I know families that do it, over dinner or before bedtime and stuff. We often read from like the Jesus storybook Bible or another kid's Bible or from the actual Bible, and we often read something else with it as well. Something like everyone, a child should know. Do you know that serious?

Laura: Yeah. So there's a few 

Nat: different ones. Everything a child should know about God, and there's a prayer one as well. Yeah. And there's heaps of yeah, really great. Other books. Yeah. And they're good for like conversation starters. Our kids love the everyone. A child should know. It's just got like short biographies of Christians. Yeah. It's just great to look through yeah. Their lives and how they do. How 

Laura: does your, obviously your two year old, probably whatever ducks had, but how old do you think that they'd have to be? I'm just thinking my oldest is you need to, he would be fine, but I'm like, oh, I can be probably not interested. How long has that been working for 

Nat: you guys? Yeah. Yeah. I think in terms of the whole breakfast time, like it can be. It'd be crazy. So they can be, boys off their chairs or someone needs to go to a poo or someone needs to their cereal cornflakes or whatever.

And you do wonder like how much they actually listened or, I think, we just persevere and pray that God would plant seeds and habits. I think, obviously I'm not, you must sit down and you can't go to the toilet but mostly because it's breakfast, they are already sitting. And then generally, because they're hungry, 

Nat: generally we have second breakfast. So where you'll have like you have to avoid, and then you can have maybe a little bit of complex or a little bit of something else. I don't know how much bribery this is, so we do scripture memory as well, and we do catechisms. But I give out like a Cheerio for every question they got. So I don't, so 

Laura: you can have the sugary cereal.

Nat: Yeah. But sometimes I wouldn't always have to say yes, good job. You've got, we do cause it's question and answer. Yeah. And then like scripture memory. We did start when they were quite little. So that dear friend that I mentioned before encouraged me to teach the kids God's word and have them memorize key scriptures and stuff, even from a young age. Even to like our two year old, he sits in the high chair and obviously he's got food, so he's fine. He does pick things up he can say some of Romans 10 verse nine already. Cause we've seen it as well. But yeah, I think even from when they're young, 

You may not think you're listening, but I think they do pick things up. , with the scriptures we started with, I think it was our first one was Romans ten nine. If you confess with your mouth, that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart, that God raised him from the dead you'll be saved.

And then like we did other ones. Lots of verses that deal with character. . And then women say it every day over time, we just started adding. They started getting some rhythms, to them. And then actually out now eight year old, pretty much made up the tune for Romans 10 verse nine.

Oh, that's really good. They just became songs in a way, and then yeah, a little while later, put some calls with them and then. I was encouraged to record them. So we've now that's really so we can use them at church and other families can use them. It's really cool. Yes. Can we hear them? So that's called CCBC kids, seeing the Bible. It's a bit of a mouthful, but because we're Campbelltown city Baptist church, then. It's a lot of our kids recorded them with us, so we've just called them. That's so cool. They are on YouTube and Spotify, so you can go on. 

Laura: Oh, that was my next question. I was like, please, if I can listen to it in 

Nat: the car. So they're on Spotify. 

Laura: And I like that your little boys involved. I think maybe that's just a really great example of your love and your joy or the Bible and God's word pouring out into them. 

Nat: Yeah. Yeah. That's really cool. Yeah. 

Laura: Oh, I'm really keen to check that out. I've not been putting show notes up on the website cause I've not having capacity for it, but I will put it in the show description. If anyone wants to have a listen to that, I'll find a Spotify link or the YouTube link and put it in. Oh Instagram. 

Nat: Yeah. Yeah. I'm on Instagram, CCBC kids sing , we just put up like, I'm not on, I don't do a lot because I find it a bit too overwhelming. I, we put up, we have a chat about Instagram. 

Laura: Yes. That would be good. A conversation down. I'll talk to you about that later, 

Nat: but yeah, but we will put up our latest ones and stuff yeah, 

Laura: that's really cool. We'll have a look. I'm wondering. As other mums are listening, who might be wrestling with the same things that we've been talking about, like are needing for control. Just seeing that stuff coming up in our heart, that we're not really loving. How would you encourage her as she's wrestling with 


Nat: all of that? Yeah, I think, ah, firstly, you're not alone. And it is hard. Like it's really hard. But God is with you. He is in you, he's working on your heart and working on your kids' hearts slowly growing you day. And he loves your kids even more than you do. I think just go to him be in his word preach the truth of the gospel to yourself every day. Remind yourself of his love and faithfulness which we can do through his word. And I re I reckon, just remember we are we're in this for the long haul, , we can't expect perfection or fast growth. Straightaway overnight. We can't be surprised when our kids who are sinners sin. , we probably have, I don't know, 18 years or so of opportunities to teach and train and repent and show Jesus to these beautiful children. As his ambassadors. It's the long game, 


Laura: yeah, that's really good. We're not just parents for a while. They're in their home either. I love, what you're saying about being in a relationship with them and pointing them to Jesus. 


Nat: If I could just leave you one scripture that I say to myself a lot and come back to is some 23 which is a very common well-known one. But I think just that saying it to ourselves or meditating on it about how God makes us lie down in green pastures, leads us beside still waters and restores our soul. , God guides us in paths of righteousness for his namesake. And that even when we walk through the valley of the shadow of death we don't have to fear any evil because he is with us and his rod and his staff comforts us. Yeah. And at the end that we would dwell in the house of the Lord forever. 


Laura: Not I'm just so encouraged by all your reminders in this conversation. To seek God that our identities in him, not in what we thought we would be as mothers or how our children are. But that we are God's children. And I also really appreciated the reminder what our job is to keep pointing at kids to Jesus that it's not our job or within our power to change their hearts, but that we can partner with God it's a blessing to be used by him for his glory. I've just really appreciated that mind shift of setting our priorities. And I think everything that you said that's flowed on from there has just been so encouraging. I'm wondering if you could wrap up the show by praying for the moms who are listening, particularly for the mums whose heart struggling with the same stuff that you were going through 10 years ago.


Nat: Yeah. Sure. All right. Let's pray. Heavenly father, thank you for our kids for blessing us with those little people in our homes that are your children. But yeah, thank you. That we can be used by you for your glory. Help us Lord point our kids to you. It's so often hard and we need you though. We need your wisdom, your strength, your grace, to parent these children. And please help us to come to you to remind us of the gospel and what you've done for us in Jesus. And please help us to stamp eternity on our eyeballs and to, yeah, to look vertically to you for our identity and not to our kids or their behavior or achieving. Yeah, Lord, please help us to rely on you more than ourselves.

And may our lives be used for your glory in Jesus name, Lord. Amen. 


Laura: Amen. 

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