Parenting is one of the most important and fulfilling role a person could perform in his entire life, if one decides to be a parent that is. Most couples wait eagerly for this stage in their marriage- a chance to upgrade their bond of love to a new level. Parents also have high hopes for each of their children and pin all their expectations on their offspring. In the process, they tend to forget that children are not vessels to fulfill their own unmet dreams and that they too have their own goals and aspirations.
When I look into the lives of many of the families of my parent’s generation, I realise that many parents play favouritism with their children. I do not know if this is intentional or not, but it is very much evident in some cases. Having been subjected to this myself, I have often wondered the reason for this. What I find most intriguing is when I realise that most parents who do this were themselves subjected to being second fiddle to their siblings in childhood. In other words, they were not the favourites of their own parents. One would assume that not being the most favoured child would make them realise the consequences of this action. That they would not repeat this with their own children. However, I wonder why this doesn’t happen. They say that a mother cannot love one son more than the other. I do not believe this is true in real life. All parents have favorites, some are better at concealing it than the others.
Recently a friend confided in me about his father who reminds him that his younger brother is smarter. He has had to live with this from childhood and may continue living with it for the rest of his life. When he told me this it made me feel really sad, maybe because I have experienced favouritism in my own childhood. It is difficult to deal with people who think you are not intelligent everyday. Its more difficult to love them and forgive. The unspoken hurt caused due to such actions or words often mature into feelings of inadequacy and depression. It is sad to see this happen because of one’s own parents.
Our birth into a particular family is a decision which we have no control over. We have no choice in selecting our parents and hence they were not ‘chanced’ upon us. We are in their family for a definite reason, whether we realize it now or later. If we understand that God places difficult people in our lives to strengthen us, we would look at them in a new light. The world did not even spare Jesus from taunts and rejection and He came down as a human so that we could relate to Him as a person. Jesus was a God who was not showered with praises by His people, but suffered one of the worst forms of death and humiliation. People walk into our lives for a purpose and all of them are learning curves for a better us. We just have to see them as how Jesus would see them. Created in the image of God. No matter how harsh they may act towards us, His grace will lead us to the realisation that God who is the creator of the entire universe loves us more than we could ever imagine. This is a powerful and humbling thought. After all, there can be no love greater than our Heavenly Father.
“Can a woman forget her nursing child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? Yes, these may forget, yet I will not forget you! Behold, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are continually before me.” Isaiah 49:15-16