Thursday, October 29, 2009

who am i?

Who am I? - "mommy"
How do I feel about you? - "you love me"

these are the two questions that John and I began asking our children before we discipline, correct, train or make decisions for them. We once heard Mark Driscoll say in one of his sermons that he ask these questions to his children. He wanted to remind them "in the midst" of the hard things that he is their father and he loves them dearly - too much to let them go their own way. Sometimes this makes a difference in their response and sometimes it doesn't. But today was one of those days that it made a HUGE difference. Last night we drove to Reform (1.5hrs) to visit our old church and attend their Fall Festival. We had a blast but we got home really late. Today, Jake was really tired and I knew it. When we got home from Bible Study we had to have a discussion about his patience's and he had gotten upset. After the talk, I went to the kitchen to fix lunch and he came to me crying and said "mommy, I can't stop crying." At that moment I absolutely knew what he needed - a nap. He does not take naps these days and normally he doesn't need them but today he did. So before I told him that he had to take a nap I ask him these 2 questions to remind him that I love him and he was not being punished. this was mommy making a wise decision for him. He of course became even more hysterical because he did not want to take a nap. At this point, I told him he needed to calm down so that he could eat his lunch and he just couldn't. so I offered him a few crackers and told him to go to bed. He wouldn't take the crackers he was too upset. So I put him in the bed and lovingly (never during all of this had I lost my temper) told him that I loved him and his body needed rest. So a few minutes later he is screaming at me - very angry. So I took him 2 slices of cheese and a tablespoon of peanut butter and a drink. I walked into his room and sat on his bed. Again, I ask him these two questions and he answered them. Then I said, Jake you are not being punished. sometimes the very best thing for us is not what we want. I love you enough to make you rest your body so that you will enjoy the rest of your day. I do not want you to be angry with me but even if you are you will still take a nap because I am your mom and I love you and I know what is best. Do you understand? "yes ma'am" His next response made me know that he got it - I love you mommy - will you lay down with me for a minute? ABSOLUTELY!!!!

Sometimes I think it is so much easier to change the behavior and ignore the heart. I knew that I could have gone in there and threatened to spank him if he did not stop crying and you know what I have done that on many occasions. But today, today God was gracious to me and he was strong when normally I am weak. And I got to see his heart bend toward me right before my very eyes and it was priceless!!!! thank you God that i get to be a part of this journey in their life.

1 comment:

Shelley said...

precious and encouraging. i love those two questions. i hope i can remember them. my thyroid kills my memory!