Living with grace means that we not only offer it to others, but that we also offer it to ourselves! This can be a difficult thing to do, even when we quickly offer grace to others. It is also very difficult for our girls to do for themselves. Yet, we are loved fiercely by God. He exemplified the length He was willing to go to for us when Jesus died on the cross. If His love for us means He was willing to die for us, then I imagine it would hurt God to hear all the negative things we say to ourselves, even if only in our heads.
Ask yourself this: If a friend made a mistake or experienced failure, what would my reaction be? Would you respond to that friend with phrases like, “You’re horrible at that! Why do you even try? How stupid! You will never get it!”
I doubt it.
Most likely, we would encourage a friend with words of affirmation and offers of help: “Are you okay? Let’s work together on that. You’ve got this! You can do it!”
What can we do to start sharing grace with ourselves and how can we help teach our daughters to do it as well? One way to do this is to write a few positive messages to yourself (short, encouraging phrases) that you can tape on your door or mirror, anywhere that you will see them daily. Encourage your daughter to do it as well. It might feel unauthentic at first, but if we practice re-wording what we say to ourselves daily, eventually our brains will re-set and start believing something better, too. Remind your daughter that you want to know when she is feeling the emotions so that you can help her re-phrase the negative thoughts and replace them with affirming truths that we can get straight from God’s word in the Bible. If you need help knowing where to look, start by turning to Romans 8:31-35, Colossians 3:15 or Philippians 4:13.