A Two Sided Coin

Each of us is a two-sided coin. It is obvious when we flip a coin that it has a “heads” side and a “tails”. Yet in our everyday use of currency, we seldom reflect on what each side represents. As a mother, I know that each of my children has various characteristics. We refer to these as personality traits, temperament, talents, gifts, or flaws. Why is it that we see the negative side of a trait more frequently than the positive side?

I remember lamenting the fact that one of our daughters was “super sensitive” and would cry at the drop of a hat. I also complained that another daughter was so strong-willed that getting dressed was a major battle each day. (At two she was known to remove all her clothes after I had dressed her because they were wrinkled!)

My mother reminded me that each of those qualities I complained about had another side. The “super sensitive” trait was also kindness, caring and empathy. Kindness is a fruit of the Spirit that we all need to cultivate and this daughter has it in abundance. The “strong-willed” trait is also perseverance and determination.  A determination to follow God’s will is a major defense against peer pressure as our children enter adolescence. This daughter did not give in to pressure from peers even when she was lied about by so-called friends. A strong will to follow God will produce another fruit of the Spirit – faithfulness.

Galatians 5:22 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”  These are the qualities, traits, and characteristics that we want to see evident in our children’s lives. Our challenge as mothers is to recognize the positive aspect of our children’s character and help that outshine the other side of the coin. When I was able to accept that God had created each of our children with certain traits and that He had a purpose in doing so that was GOOD, it helped me accept that child and who they were. That does not mean that we accept open defiance as a strong will, or crying as a means to gain sympathy. We are still responsible to discipline and train our children. Yet, when we see the positive side of the coin, or characteristic, it will help us parent in a way that builds up our child’s strengths to honor God.

What are some characteristics that you see in your child?  Would you share each “side of the coin” and how you see a positive side in your child that you hope to nurture?

3 thoughts on “A Two Sided Coin

  1. Salem says:

    I have a super-sensitive child that is prone to crying easily but is also the first to give a hug or snuggle in your arms. Thank you for the reminder that there is a positive to find in each “flaw” we see. As one of my favorite children’s books says (You are Special by Max Lucado), “God made you perfect, and He doesn’t make mistakes.” What we may see as a negative or is a struggle for us in dealing with, God has intended in His good and perfect will.


  2. Abigail says:

    My oldest is just now two and has a LOT of energy. He is always busy and very intense about what he is into. It certainly wears me out, but I see how he throws himself, literally body and soul, into what he is doing and I love seeing that wholehearted commitment to his tasks. Focus and dedication are wonderful qualities I want to cultivate in him.


  3. Hannah says:

    And we can pray God uses that boldness and sensitivity for His glory! I was the sensitive one- and now my oldest is, too, getting his feelings hurt a lot. It’s hard to know how to handle it, and a lady at church encouraged me by saying that sensitive boys (she had three) grow up to be great men.


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