‘I love you. I’m sorry I can’t give you everything you want.’ My daughter sat on the bed, pouting. She was upset I wouldn’t take her to get a new toy. ‘Only because you won’t let me.’

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“Today my daughter sat on the bed, pouting. She was upset that I wouldn’t take her to the store to get a new toy.

‘I love you,’ I said as I turned to leave the room. ‘And, I’m sorry that you can’t have everything you want.’

‘Only because you won’t let me have everything I want,’ she stated, matter-of-factly.

‘No, it’s because I love you,’ I responded. ‘I love you enough to NOT give you everything you want.’

She rolled her eyes, clearly unwilling to accept this truth, and asked to be left alone.

Courtesy of Jenny Albers

So, I walked away and closed the door behind me.

But it’s true. I do love her enough to NOT give her everything she wants.

And when she’s ready to talk to me again, here’s what I will tell her:

My child, I love you enough to NOT give you everything you want. So that you will find contentment when you have nothing more than what you need.

I love you enough to NOT give you everything you want.
So that longing for more doesn’t deplete you, but living for more fills you up.

I love you enough to NOT give you everything you want.
So that your desires don’t burn so brightly that you become blind to the needs of others.

I love you enough to NOT give you everything you want.
So that you don’t just consume, but also contribute.

I love you enough to NOT give you everything you want.
So that your heart will illuminate upon giving, not just receiving.

I love you enough to NOT give you everything you want.
So that you’ll know how to help others instead of just helping yourself.

I love you enough to NOT give you everything you want.
So that gratitude will be imprinted on your heart even in times of scarcity.

I love you enough to NOT give you everything you want.
So that you’ll learn how to work hard and how to sacrifice, both for your own good and for the good of others.

I love you enough to NOT give you everything you want.
So that you can learn happiness doesn’t come from having it all, but from giving your all.

I love you enough to NOT give you everything you want.
So that you will be prepared for a world that disappoints, but know a God that never does.

I love you enough to NOT give you everything you want.
So that one day you’ll realize you already have everything that matters.

I can’t possibly give you everything you want, child. And even if I could, I wouldn’t. Because it’s my job to help mold you into someone who sees others before you see yourself. Someone who chooses self-sacrifice over self-indulgence. Someone whose life is so full of meaning and purpose, mercy and grace, faith, love, and compassion, that you’ll have plenty of it to give away.

I love you my child, and I know that you won’t grow or blossom if you always get what you want.

So I won’t give you everything. And as a result, you’ll grow and blossom.

And even though a life without everything you want is hard, I promise you that it is still so, so good.”

Courtesy of Jenny Albers

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Jenny Albers. You can follow her journey on Facebook here and Instagram here. Submit your own story here and be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories.

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