"Do not yell 'no' at me son. It's disrespectful and you will get a spanking."
"You can't spray your bed with any of these cleaners under the sink. Please don't do that again."
"Please don't make me pull the car over, because I will." Yeah, I laughed at that one...
These past months have seemed pretty crazy and stressful. We're constantly challenged to not only correct our kids, but also to train and teach them biblical truths and why we need Christ every day. Our hearts are yucky; what a relief that Christ transforms us and promises complete joy in him and him alone.
I actually started this post a couple of months ago. I still pray for a 'parenting mind' that focuses on the salvation and hearts of our children. It's very easy to only focus on their outward behavior when we correct them and not always address the intentions of their actions (or mine, for that matter). I recently started reading/finishing a book on parenting and I'm challenged to point to Christ and see his love in all the little situations throughout our days.
"Mae, Mae, I'm sorry."
"Sorry for what?"
"For messing up your Play-Doh."
"Why did you do that? It's okay though, it's not your fault."
"Yes, it is my fault."
"It's okay though, I'm not mad at you."
Right before this conversation between Mae and Deacon, I hollered at Deacon from the bathroom after I heard Maevri scream at him. Hollered and screamed. I felt guilty for yelling at them, and was immediately reminded of the grace and love I need every day. Our kids should see grace and forgiveness in the times that we mess up too and I have to remember that. (We're all currently learning how to not sin in our anger...) I'm very grateful to see these little triumphs though. It's a picture of the victory we can have in Christ amidst the fights of our flesh.
"Train with this thought continually before your eyes: The soul of your child is the first thing to be considered. In every step that you take about them, in every plan and scheme and arrangement that concerns them, do not leave out that mighty question, 'How will this affect their souls?'" J.C. Ryle