Friday, March 16, 2012

It's Ongoing

I easily get overwhelmed with the thought of writing a new post for my blog. There are way too many things swirling in my brain.

So, I'll just share something from today (and to make up for the fact that it's been a very long time since I posted anything):

At the park today one of my children had a slightly grumpy meltdown. They were upset that another child was going to a friend's house and they were not. This child decided to outright cry. They are far too old for crying over such things. This child also spent the night with a friend last night. It's not like they were being left out of fun.

What struck me during this moment was the irony.

You see, I said yes to the other child going with a friend for the afternoon. And, I had [in my head] decided I would take the remaining children by a fast food joint for an ice cream cone. It was hot outside and they would enjoy a treat. But, this child threw a fit. I corrected their behavior, telling them that crying was unacceptable. [I also pointed out that they were not invited!]

Then, I watched as this child went ahead of me to the parking lot, got their bag from their friend's car, and continued the grump. In fact, they threw their bag on the ground, crossed their arms, and let out a very audible grump. {insert laughter that I tried to keep quiet}

The child was told to get in the van with their siblings. Then, I had to tell the child that they would not only not be going to the friend's house but now they would have to not get ice cream.

I spent a few minutes explaining that when I say no, it's usually because I have something else in mind. Sometimes it's because I know things they don't know. Sometimes I say no to a request because I know there are safety issues. Sometimes I say no because we have other plans. In this instance, I said no because they were not invited, but then I also planned something fun for them anyway [the ice cream].

As I tried to be patient through the process [and failed at a point or two--evidenced by my stern voice, for which I apologized], I was reminded that these parenting moments have so much deep truth.

God often tells me no to something I really, really want. It's not because He is mean or selfish. He has my best interests at heart. And, He wants to bless me. He cannot bless me when I throw a fit. Sometimes, because He is an incredibly gracious God, He blesses me anyway. After all, He's all about grace. My entire life is one big gift of grace from Him.

Parenting is hard work. Parenting with the goal of honoring God is pretty much impossible. Thank God for His grace! I'm so glad I'm not parenting for just temporary pleasures or good behavior.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, I can relate to this one! We had an ice cream incident just this week. We went to the zoo with friends and went out to ice cream after. One of my kids bit the other. Doesn't matter which one; it's clearly unacceptable at age 4 or at age 6! It was while we were in the ice cream line, and that child didn't get ice cream. Result...a HUGE tantrum.

    I expressed that I felt like a "mean mom" (though I did feel I'd done the right thing.) Ann reminded me that God teaches us things too, just like I do with my kids! Glad to have multiple friends who help me keep my head on straight when it can be a bummer to make "mean" parenting decisions!