We often have people say they want help with parenting. They want the 1-2-3 and there just isn't one. God made each child too complex to have a 1-2-3. BUT we do have a picture of what parenting should look like! I am so thankful to the Lord for making things so simple. Problem is 'I' make things so complicated!
What is this picture?
I should parent my children the way that God parents me!
I find when I am exasperated I better find center pretty quick or I am likely to blow! Here we go again...back to grace. Jesus doesn't complain to his father about me, he doesn't slam a door in anger, he doesn't give up on me, and he doesn't even shame me. He just loves me and gives me grace.
You know what grace is?
It is favor rendered by one who need not do so.
How many times as a mom do I believe I have the right to be angry because the kids have left their dirty clothes on the floor, clean laundry hanging out their drawers, dropped dog food the entire way to the back door, left school books on the table, pencils on the floor and paper in every room, cabinet doors open, toys in the living room, dishes on the table, trash thrown anywhere at anytime, balls, rackets, socks, shoes ...you name it they drop and go. They do not function on my agenda or by my wishes. Trust me, I have reasons to feel exasperated! Just because I have reason, doesn't mean I have the right!
We live in a world that has forgotten that we need balance, self control, kindness!
And the only way I am going to get that is accessing the Father!
It doesn't come naturally
and it won't come unless I give way to Gods way!
Today I was left with a child willing to lie vs tell the truth. I knew he was not being truthful. I think he knew he wasn't being truthful..and yet not able to admit his wrong. If I point it out they stay in constant denial. But I can't leave him there or this will continue to grow and become an issue later in life. So, I am left with being creative and drawing it out vs. acting on my emotion. Problem is when I try to draw it out (shame) vs allowing God to reveal it (grace), I put them on the defense. When people attack me I want to put up a defense too. Putting them in the defense mode never allows them to see their own sin...they see my sin. I hate to say I know more of what to do than I can actually do right. I am realizing I am going to mess up. The question is how fast can I catch it and put myself back under Gods control instead of my own control! Really....that is what I want of my children too! They ARE going to mess up. How quick can they see their error and put God back in control!
You know what I find fascinating? I can only force change in behavior...but HE can change the heart! That is what we are to do...point them back to Him...show them the way...sometimes by words, sometimes by action, and sometimes both, but ALWAYS prayer! A changed behavior is as only as good as someone keeping an eye on it. A changed heart...is a life change!
Next time you feel yourself ready to blow, shame or berate your children...stop...and remember Gods way of parenting! Let him work through you instead of in spite of you! You will find that you and your child will be blessed! At the moment I took my tongue under control and put my head back into gear I was able to ask a question, listen, and allow God to work. YES...the child admitted it without my berating him. His heart was broken and change took place. It won't be permanent...I will have to do this again. But he is one step closer realizing his error instead of fighting mom or watching her lose it.
Thank you Lord for gently walking me through this life.
I pray I will do the same for my children while they are in my care!