“Our love grows soft if it is not strengthened by truth, and our truth grows hard if it is not softened by love.” — John Stott.
The essence of empathy is balancing truth and love. A rescuing parent leans heavily on love, but shies away from truth. A dictating parent leans heavily on truth, but mixes in little love. A counselor parent is able to express his love for the child no matter what they say or do, yet is strong enough to deliver appropriate consequences and to allow his child to struggle so that real learning takes place. It is a difficult balance, and our anxiety or anger often reveals where we fall on the continuum between rescuer and dictator. Is your love too soft, or your truth too hard?
Striking a balance between truth and love models our heavenly Father’s relationship with us.
~Bible verse: Ephesians 4:15
•Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.
(Parenting by Design Reading on YouVersion)