When Mom's Hugs and Kisses Aren't Enough


Yesterday, I wished my girls were toddlers again. I wished that all it took to heal their wounds was a kiss on the skinned knee.

As my daughters get older, their wounds are often less physical and more emotional. The constant criticism of a coach. A math test that got the better of them. A birthday party invite that never comes. A friend's inconsiderate words.

One of my daughters experienced all of these yesterday. And I had nothing to give her except a hug and an "I love you." No words of wisdom. Nothing to make the pain go away.

I wish I could heal the wounds that were inflicted yesterday. I wish I could kiss it and make it all better like I did when she was two. But I can't. As a mom, I want to protect my daughters from the hurt in this world. But it's not possible.

The truth is that other people are going to say and do things that are going to hurt our kids. They're going to inflict wounds that no mother's hugs and kisses can heal. And that stinks.

But it also gives our kids a chance to grow. It gives them an opportunity to find healing somewhere other than our arms. As much as it hurts us to not be able to heal our kids' wounds, we have to trust that they will find healing from God. He is, after all, the Great Physician, and He specializes in broken hearts.

Psalm 34:18 says, "The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit." Those words perfectly describe my daughter yesterday -- brokenhearted and crushed in spirit. And all I could do for her was hug her and gently place her in God's loving arms, reminding her that God loves her and has a plan for her.

As my girls grow, I'm learning, too, that when mom's hugs and kisses aren't enough, I have to place them in God's hands and trust that He will heal the wounds that I cannot.