Doctor of Leadership in Global Perspectives: Crafting Ministry in an Interconnected World

Give Me Your Eyes For My Mom

Written by: on October 12, 2023

Have you heard the song Give Me Your Eyes by Brandon Heath? The chorus sticks with me.

Give me Your eyes for just one second
Give me Your eyes so I can see
Everything that I keep missin’
Give me Your love for humanity
Give me Your arms for the broken-hearted
The ones that are far beyond my reach
Give me Your heart for the ones forgotten
Give me Your eyes so I can see (1)

I try think of remember song when I think of my mom. Lord, help me to see her with Your eyes. Help me to look beyond my pain. I try to think of a little girl whose parents divorced. Then, not long after her father remarried, her mother died of a brain aneurysm. My mother, along with her older brother and sister, moved in with her father, his new wife, and step-children. She was eight years old.

My mother has never emotionally matured beyond the level of that little girl who lost her mother. This is the context I strive to think of when it comes to my mother. I have not received the emotional support I craved from her because she did not have the maturity to give it to me. In their book Rare Leadership, Marcus Warner and Jim Wilder write, “When your emotional capacity gets overwhelmed, trauma occurs and your ability to suffer well gets stunted.” (2) What my mother experienced as a young girl caused trauma and stunted her emotional growth.

The eventual side effect of my mother’s trauma caused a rift in our relationship. As I pursued emotional maturity, I set healthy boundaries with my parents. Their response to these boundaries was to cut me out of their lives. They have not spoken to me in over eight and a half years. Yet God did not leave me as an orphan. A couple in my church, Mike and Diana, stepped in and became my surrogate parents. They loved me, supported me, and encouraged me in a way my biological parents could not.

Warner and Wilder comment, “The church today is in dire need of fathers, mothers, and elders – people with the life experience and walk with God to act like themselves, keep relationships bigger than problems, and model an intimate walk with God in the midst of hardship.” (3) Mike and Diana provided this for me. The ability to grow, to endure hardship, and to live a life of joy is one of the four traits of the RARE leader. (4) I am grateful for the unconditional love and acceptance I have received from Mike and Diana. The love they and others gave to me helped me to learn and grow.

The mark of a RARE Leader is one who knows how to suffer well. They are able to maintain joy amid trials. “Joy is not a recipe for avoiding pain. Joy is what enables us to suffer well. Joy assures us that we are never alone in our pain and that those who share our suffering will show us how to remember who we are when things get hard.” (5) When we look at the world the way Jesus does, when we learn to see with His eyes, we learn how to suffer well.

I admit, I still struggle when it comes to my parents. I want to see them with the eyes of Jesus, I want to remember the trauma my mother experienced. This is not easy because I still have my own childhood trauma.

“You have to build this capacity when you are not triggered if you want any hope of getting back there when you are triggered. In order to suffer well, you have to develop your capacity for appreciation.” (6)

I cannot change my parents. I cannot make them accept healthy boundaries or make them choose to have a relationship with me. I cannot force them to grow or mature. What I can do is continue to pray for them and continue to strive to endure hardship well. I can choose joy in all circumstances and seek to progress on my own path of growth.

[1] Brandon Heath. “Give Me Your Eyes.” Songwriters: Jason Ingram and Fred Rose.

[1] Marcus Warner and Jim Wilder, Rare Leadership: I4 Uncommon Habits for Increasing Trust, Joy, and Engagement in the People You Lead. (Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers, 2016), 177.

[1] Ibid., 179.

[1] The four traits of a RARE Leader are: 1) Remain Relational; 2) Act Like Yourself; 3) Return to Joy; 4) Endure Hardship Well. Pg. 19.

[1] Warner and Wilder, 177.

[1] Ibid., 185.

About the Author


Becca Hald

Becca is an ordained Foursquare minister, serving as the Online Community Pastor at Shepherd's House Church. She has over twenty-five years of leadership experience both inside and outside the church. Becca has served her community in many capacities ranging from Administrative Assistant and Children’s Ministry Director to Secretary and President of multiple school organizations. She and her husband, Andrew have been married for over 25 years. They have two adult children, Drew and Evelyn. Her great passion is to equip others, to raise awareness about mental health, and to help reduce the negative stigma surrounding mental health issues. In her free time, she loves going to Disneyland, reading, sewing, and making cards.

7 responses to “Give Me Your Eyes For My Mom”

  1. mm Audrey Robinson says:

    Thank you for sharing and being open and authentic. I am sorry things were not different for you. However, I know that it is because of the early traumas you have become the marvelous person that you are today.

    One of my younger sisters and I share somewhat of a similar story with our Mother (as with yours). However, my sister has not yet completely accepted that our Mother is not close with her as with our two other siblings. Any advice I might pass on to her?

    • mm Becca Hald says:

      Thank you Audrey. I try to recognize that my parents did the best they could, but they just did not have what I needed. It does not make it any less painful when they choose to remove me from their lives, but it helps me to recognize that I do not have to carry the weight of it.

      One thing I have learned is the importance of healthy boundaries and that you have to be ready and willing to accept the fallout of accepting those boundaries. I wonder if your sister is ready to address the reality that she faces. I think until she is ready to accept the limitations of her relationship with your mother, there is not much you can do except be supporting and loving.

  2. Jenny Steinbrenner Hale says:

    Becca, Thank you so much for your post. I appreciate how you led with your personal story and wove Warner and Wilder’s theme into a context that is tender and real for you.

    This quote from Warner and Wilder stuck out for me: “The church today is in dire need of fathers, mothers, and elders – people with the life experience and walk with God to act like themselves, keep relationships bigger than problems, and model an intimate walk with God in the midst of hardship.” It sounds like Mike and Diana were amazing and influential people. I wonder if we as a church could lean into being this sort of gift for each other a little more strongly. What are your thoughts?

    • mm Becca Hald says:

      Thank you Jenny. Yes, I think it is so important for the church to lean into these roles, for us to be family to one another. Mike and Diana have been wonderful to me, but I should also add that Diana does not have the same relationship with her own children. (Mike passed in 2015) Just as my own parents did not have what I need, Diana does not always have what her children need. It is the same with my son. I did not always have what he needed growing up. He has found a family up in Springfield and I am so grateful for the way his church has surrounded him and cared for him in a way that I was not able to. We are all imperfect and can only do our best. I believe that God fills in the gaps of our imperfect parenting.

  3. Becca,
    Thanks for sharing your personal story. I agree with the prayer in Brandon Heath’s song. With the eyes of Jesus, there is hope for healing and forgiveness. I love your conclusion “I can choose joy in all circumstances and seek to progress on my own path of growth.”
    That must be very freeing, a path to great growth indeed.

    • mm Becca Hald says:

      Thank you Jean. Yes, it is freeing to simply carry the weight of my own growth. For so long, I tried to carry the needs of others in an unhealthy way. Learning that I can only change my own heart frees me to love others where they are at and strive to be an example of the love of Jesus.

  4. Alana Hayes says:

    Tell me about a person that is a RARE leader in your context? How did they make an impact for you?

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