I never in my wildest dreams thought I would be surrounded by boys. I collected dolls. I made crafts. I liked dainty, vintage tea sets. I grew up with sisters, and all I wanted were girls.
Until I had boys.
What they say is true. They are loud, and they frequently wrestle after dinner. They talk of things like Minecraft and Star Wars. They wear holes in the knees of every pair of pants. They climb trees and require frequent trips to urgent care. And they are glorious.
In our tender moments, they dance with me in the kitchen and they ask me to marry them. They bring me flowers from the side of the road and they hug me and tell me it will be OK when I spill candy all over the floor. The younger ones take my hand in the movie theater, and sometimes even the teenager says he loves me when we are on the phone.
And on the days this mama feels less than her best? They provide a generous mirror, a way to see myself the way God does. They tell me I’m beautiful, or they wrap their arms around my neck and say that they’ve missed me all day. They think about the kind of video game I might enjoy playing – because they want to spend time together. They love me, and they forgive my faults.
None of us is perfect, of course, but that’s when a generous mirror helps most. It’s encouraging to be reminded that God and others still believe in you, that the people who know your heart see potential and not limitations.
Friends and cousins and co-workers. Sisters and husbands and mamas. We can all be a generous mirror for each other.
We can choose to tell one another that it will be OK. We can find ways to be together, and we can look for beauty. We can cut through our judgment and our unfair expectations and simply shine God’s love.
And when we do? I think we’ll all appreciate the view.