Newspaper Writing, Opinion, Sample Work

Faults of Faith

faults of faithPublished June 2014: The Messenger – Faith: A Fresh Take

Faults of Faith

I have never claimed to be perfect and my children know this to be true first-hand. They see my faults on a daily basis. They will call me out when I mix up their sandwiches while packing lunches; they will gripe and moan because I’m always late — often while sitting in the garage waiting for me — and they, as teenagers, have no problem telling me when I roll through a stop sign or forget to turn on my signal.

My children know that I have faults; they see that I’m human, but more importantly, they recognize that I try my best.

As parents, we are always under the microscope. Our children model our behavior, learn from our actions and even feel what we are feeling. Even from a very early age, my son would recognize when I was sad and would wrap his arms around me at just the right time. My daughter still to this day, knows just when to say “I love you momma.”

Kids are intuitive and the most forgiving. They may point out our faults, but they also point out the good things we do. They are in tune with what’s important to us, which is why modeling our faith is so important.

My children knew how to pray at a very young age because they watched me clasp my hands and speak to God. They know the importance of counting our blessings because they saw — and still do see — my entire family hold hands and say a prayer before each meal.

Unfortunately, our children also see when our faith falters. On those Sunday mornings when we are exhausted from the Saturday track meets or dance recitals, they notice when I don’t set the alarm to make it to Mass. They see when I question God’s actions after tragedies occur or lives are taken too soon.

Allowing our children to see our faults can offer us an opportunity to teach them more about life, love and faith. It shows them that while people may disappoint us at times, if we have faith in who they are and what they can accomplish, it can empower them to succeed. It shows them that it is perfectly acceptable to make mistakes as long as you learn from them and resist the urge to dwell on the faults and spiral downward. It also teaches them that by believing in our faith, we have a higher power guiding us through the rough patches.

Even though my children know I’m riddled with flaws and faults, they have learned that mom believes in letting faith take over; mom is human; mom tries her hardest; and mom will do her best to guide them in the right direction — with or without her turn signal on.

— Shannon Philpott

Read More Fresh Takes on Faith HERE

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