By Talya Flowers
I believe that God has a great sense of humor.
I will believe this until the day that I die because several months ago, I started working with children, and not school age—I worked with toddlers. You know the group of kids that every parent, as they drop their kids off with us, says “I just don’t know how you do it.”
Neither did I.
Every day I would come into work, bright and early, and see the prettiest little girl. I’d come in and she’d hover near me, give me a hug or ask me a million and one questions. Then I’d begin my daily routine: Lip-gloss. Deodorant. Lotion. “Taya, what is that?” “Can I have some?” she’d say in the cutest voice, with her hands wrapped around my thigh.
I’d squeeze the tube so that just a dab of lip-gloss came up and then I’d place it on her finger. As she placed the lip-gloss onto her lips, I’d tell her “you are the most beautiful girl in the world.” And she’d smile the biggest smile.
Looking down at her, I’d picture my own daughter one day saying and doing the exact same thing. She’ll want to do what mommy does because she can only do what she sees. She’ll want to know what mommy knows because she can only know what she has been taught. As a queen, I want to raise a queen.
Here are 10 things that I want to tell/show my daughter; ten non-negotiable facts about her worth.
1. God loves you unconditionally.
I can tell you all day that God loves you, but you have to believe it for yourself. He does. He really does.
2. Know your value.
When you accept that God loves all of you, you begin to see yourself as he sees you: worthy, deserving, a queen. God raises queens. Always know your worth.
3. You are more than enough.
Everyone has their own interpretation of who somebody should be. Define yourself and never allow someone else to determine your worth. We have raised you better than that.
4. You are beautiful.
When I see you, I hear the scriptures “you are fearfully and wonderfully made” and “you are altogether lovely my darling there is no flaw in you.”
5. Honor your body.
I have heard this scripture quoted so many times in church. I understood what the intention was, but then I started analyzing the scripture. God tells us in scripture that a house divided cannot withstand. Then he tells us to honor our bodies and that we are a temple (we are a house). Hear me out. When you honor your body, you are honoring your mind, your body, and your spirit. To deny one of the three (mind, body, soul) is not honoring you.
6. Wait. Wait. Wait.
We meet people. We fall in love. We fall out of love. We are heart broken. We learn not to repeat those steps. Who you are in elementary school will be different from who you are in high school. Who you are in high school will be totally different from who you will become in college. Don’t rush. Wait. Wait. Wait. God blesses those who wait.
7. Guard your heart, don’t gate it.
I have a big heart, and I pray that I am going to pass that down to you. Guard your heart by wisely choosing who will be close to you. Love everybody but only allow those into your queendom who are willing to do the same for you. Never gate your heart but become selective in who gets to get close to the gift. You are the gift and not everyone can afford you.
8. Believe in yourself.
I will support you. I will fight for you. I will motivate, encourage, and uplift you. That will mean nothing if you don’t believe in yourself first. Believe in yourself and you will take on the world.
9. Work hard for what you want.
I am in a place mentally where I know that my decisions now will impact you. I am working hard to figure out what is going to be the best decision for the family. I am working hard. I value hard work. And you should too. It’s okay to rely on other people, but you have to work hard for what you want. Become your own cheerleader.
10. Your life, your rules, choose wisely.
I know I will see myself in you. I pray now that you do not inherit my stubbornness or self-sufficiency (you can have some but not all :). It’s your life. Period. Point. Blank. I can only offer guidance from what I have experienced by having a heart too big in a sometimes cruel world. Every choice you make has a consequence. As your mother, I’d advise you, of course, to reread number 6 on the list.
If you know that God loves you unconditionally and you know your value, then I am sure you will be just fine.
I love you, and I haven’t even met you yet.