„…show us the Father and that will be enough for us.” (John 14:8)
These words often come to my mind when I reflect on the relationship with our children. They are linked with the thought expressed by Blessed John Paul II: “parental love is called to become for the children the visible sign of the very love of God”. I can “hear” those words expressed by our four kids, as in this short and simple sentence my desire to show them the Father meets their profound need of expreiencing love.
I’d like to show the Father’s love to the children – so that they can see it, hear it, feel it – through my own behaviour, words, the way I address them. I’d like to know how to channel some portion of His tenderness, His unusual patience, His joy arising from the fact that they merely are there. I’d like to give them the sense of His availability, unswearving love always offering new chances, His respect for human freedom… But also to fight for their true good. So to say “no”, set limits, have difficult conversations about mistakes.
I don’t think children remember the brand of clothes they were wearing, or how expensive their toys were. But I’m sure they remember the love they’ve been given.
* Familiaris consortio 14
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