Being seen is a vital need for every Courageous Girl (young and old).

Sometimes, it's just easy to get lost in all the practical needs of our children and we forget about the things that really matter. Though loving Jesus and loving others is at the forefront of all we want for our children, we learn how to do this when we are first experiencing it from others. Ideally from our parents.

Mom - do you know your own unique contributions to your family? Your community? To the Kingdom? Do you trust God designed you with purpose for His good plans.

Big questions but as you lean into discovering your own wiring, you will not only model to your daughter (and son) that God has purpose and delights in every part of who you are. Even the parts that we think are pointless or useless.

Every single person is vital in God's economy and has a way of reflecting a part of God's image to the world. That's why we use the Core Values Index to help each of us discover more of our unique hard-wired contribution to our families and smaller communities. When we grasp this, we have a clearer sense of resting in God's design. It requires trust. It even requires submission. However, when we feed (practice and experience), water (affirm with our words), and delight (enjoy the fruits of His creation), we get to see God's plans unfold for our own lives and the lives of our children. We don't have to make a seed grow. That's God's job. We just get to foster and care for and cheer on what God already planted in our children.

The Core Values Index (CVI) is one of the tools we use at Living Wholehearted, Courageous Girls, and in our own marriage and parenting because it's one of the most reliable assessments around (we are trained in many...) No one can be nailed down in a four quadrant tool. And yet, the CVI stumbles onto something quite profound. Parents and children alike better grasp how wide, and long, and deep is the love (and creativity) of God. He took time to knit each of us together in our mom's womb and has purpose to our bent.

We saw our Addie's caution as wisdom from a young age. We could have fostered this as being shy, but instead we saw it as her ability to observe details, assess, and then move forward. Nevie was passionate from birth. We could have labeled her strong-willed, but instead God helped us see her passion as power to make a positive difference. She needed to move forward and try things. Her combo to act and as well as feel deeply is known as the Merchant/Builder or "feeling/doer."

All that to say, it matters how we see our children and draw them out with our words, time, and energy. We have woven CVI throughout the CG curriculum not because it's the ultimate answer, but because it is a vehicle to help us fan the flame and watch the seeds grow in us, our daughters, our families, and our CG groups.

A child without a parent who sees them and then delights in them will spend their entire life insecure and seeking out the approval of others. Or, hiding so that no one will ever see them. Let's be intentional to see beyond what our kids produce (grades, behaviors, activities, etc...) and see the foundation of who they are, regardless of what they do in life.

A child who is affirmed as a child will grow up and know how to affirm those around them. Their love tank will be full and they can then help others, in turn, be seen rather than trying to get their needs met from others in unhealthy ways.

There is so much more we want to share about this. Listen in to the first couple sessions of our Living Wholehearted Podcast or the episode we did with our children. Or better yet, join us for the Perfectly Imperfect Christian Parenting Conference this month on April 23rd and 24th where we unpack this more. If you are ready for a deep dive, consider time with our CG leadership coaches to unpack your CVI or do a CVI retreat with your group. Email to learn more!

In any case, trust that YOUR design - and your CHILD'S design - is good and on purpose. It's sometimes hard to see the fruit of what will come of a slow-to-act or a passionate feeler/doer. But - I CANNOT WAIT!!!!!

Now, go tell each person in your family one thing you see in them that helps you know more of God's character today.

Because of Jesus,
Terra and Jeff
Words of Love
"Trust in the LORD with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight."
- Proverbs 3:5-6

Spring is emerging before our eyes: the hum of the hummingbirds as they drink nectar from a flowering bush, the vivid hue of a new tulip bud, the freshness in the air, the smell of cut grass, emerging fruit blossoms. These symptoms of spring give pause and bring delight to children and to our own souls. We can easily miss these moments. So, let's slow down and take a deep breath.
How do we see the world through the eyes of our children? We practice slowing down, engaging our 5 senses, and delighting in the beauty that God so lavishly gifts us.
1. See the colors of spring flowers and the earth coming alive
2. Smell the new blossoms and fresh warmth in the air
3. Taste your favorite Easter meal

4. Touch the new spring leaves and blooms, and feel the sun on your skin
5. Hear the birds singing and nesting
Job 12:7-10 "But ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds in the sky, and they will tell yu; or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish in the sea inform you. Which of all these does not know that the hand of the LORD has done this? In His hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind."

Jesus shares the cry of His heart for His children to trust Him and have faith like a “mustard seed”. ‘The Kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his field. It is the smallest of all seeds, but when it has grown it is larger than all the garden plants and becomes a tree, so that birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.’  Matthew 13:31-32

As a parent, there is no shortage of “gardening” for our children. Such a work in progress! Planting seeds of God’s character...compassion, love, gentleness, humility, integrity...and many other traits. Watering the seeds with coaching, praying and modeling. Then, the waiting. Praying that God will send the water and the sun to allow sprouting and blooming. Trusting that God will do more with those seeds then we could ever ask or imagine (Ephesians 3:20).

Here’s a tool for your gardening kit: communication cards.


Don’t miss Jeff and Terra Mattson, CG co-founders, at the Perfectly Imperfect Virtual Conference. They'll be sharing about how to raise #wholeheartedleaders who know they are loved and love others well. Using the Core Value Index (CVI) and how God uniquely wires each of us, Jeff and Terra will help us lay a foundation every child needs: to be seen, known, and valued. Join them and other incredible speakers like New York Time’s Best Seller @bobgoff, baseball favorite @darrlystrawberry, and Jerrad Lopes of @dadtired at this year’s Perfectly Imperfect Virtual Conference on April 23 & 24.  Register today!

Register for the Event


We are launching our first “Starting and Sustaining Healthy CG Groups” virtual training with Courageous Girls co-founder, Terra Mattson. You will NOT want to miss this incredible time of teaching and equipping. Space is limited. May 19th and 26th from 10:00-11:30 am PST. Registration opens May 3rd.

New blog! Beth Kershner shares thoughts as a result of combining her two day jobs: Farmer and Courageous Girls Leadership Coach. What do manure and seedlings have to do with trusting God?

Read the blog

There are many ways to do YOU want to parent? We can wrestle with trying to manage our children’s behavior or reflect on how God sees them...LOVED. Grace-based parenting means we parent from an identity that we are LOVED and our children are LOVED. How do we do this? April’s resource list is ready for you!

Check Out the Resource List

Each month, we feature a mama/daughter duo from around the globe. This month, we are featuring Courageous Mama Beth Kershner. She will be sharing how being in the Courageous Girls Movement has impacted her life and deepened her relationships with her two daughters.

Beth is on our CG team, including serving as a Leadership Coach. She is a member of the original CG group with her eldest daughter and leads a CG group for her youngest. She gets to use her many lessons learned to provide practical tips and encourage other moms in their walk with God and in their own families and communities.

She is celebrating 20 years of marriage to Jeff this year and is mama to their 2 daughters and a son in a small town outside of Portland, Oregon. Her other job as farmer, allows her to create and build a life of food-raising for her family and folks in the area.  

Be sure to listen to this month’s CG Mini Podcast on April 26. You won’t want to miss this one!

Being Daughters Rooted in Grace

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Shrinking the Integrity Gap:
Between What Leaders Preach & Live

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