Kim has posted a new Story Challenge on the blog today. It's perfect for the season. Check out the details and play along!

When Kristin Grace was born, more than 12 years behind Amy, I had the very conscious experience of being grateful for the chance to do this parenting thing again....and this time, to get it right. Yes, this time, I actually thought, I wouldn’t leave parenting a young child behind feeling guilty. That was because, of course, I would do it right. And by right, I meant perfect. I was older, smarter, wiser, and more experienced. I had the benefit of that experience to tell me which things I’d worried about before weren’t really that important and which things I’d failed to attend to were, in fact, critical. This time, there would be no guilt required. And I was so grateful for that.

But the funny thing was, it didn’t take very long before I realized that I felt more guilty instead of less guilty than I’d felt on the first go round as a mom. Because of course I still screwed stuff up, all the time. And despite all of that age and wisdom and experience, I still managed to make a lot of mistakes. Most significantly and fundamentally, I still sinned, even against that little girl who I was so sure I wouldn’t feel any guilt at all about or toward.

And then, when Kristin was 15 months old, I began to understand grace.

I began to understand that I would never get parenting “right,” which was only part of why I needed--desperately needed--grace myself. I saw that what Kristin needed was no different. I began to take myself--and her--a lot less seriously. And I began to really and truly understand that what God provided for me in Christ was not an example to follow or a list of rules to obey. It wasn’t even a philosphy to live by. None of those things would have held any power to save me from myself. No, what He offered me was love, love in the form of grace freely given, in defiance of what I deserved.

His love, demonstrated on the cross, has saved me from my sin and from my righteousness--my self righteousness. And in that, He has set me free--free to glorify His name by loving and serving others, free to grant grace to my daughters, free to hold them to a standard and then point them to Christ when they fail, as they will, to meet it. And that is something to be grateful for.

Am I completely grateful? Not yet. But there’s grace for that, too. 11.14.13

Katie Pertiet
Sacked Solids: Nursery Paper Pack
Messed Up Photo Blocks Brushes and Stamps No. 11
Painted Book Paper Pack No. 02
November Story Challenge Freebie Pack
Finley Solids Paper Pack
Finley Element Pack
Blank Safety Tags

Studio DD
Element Cluster from Layer Works No. 354