What we have been working on, in no particular order:
- Not having a meltdown when mom assigns an unexpected chore.
- Being content when someone else gets more.
- How to restore a relationship with siblings when excessive teasing has rendered them cynics.
- That mom can be instructive (“you may not have this, because you whined for it”), but siblings do not have the authority to be instructive in this way (“I will not pour the milk for you because you whined”).
- Respect– dramatic sighs and stomping up the stairs are disrespectful. Tone of voice matters when you say Yes Ma’am.
- Anger– Angry thoughts seep out, even when we try not to let them show.
- God’s grace is sufficient for us. God always gives us the light that we need.
This list tempts me to be overwhelmed, as a parent, except I’m realizing that these are all challenges that we adults face. God is giving me a chance to work through them on a child’s level, and as usual, challenging me with the parallels to my own life. It is good.
It is good!
I totally get this list…and the feeling of being overwhelmed. I joke with my husband that I sometimes need an “alone cone” (from the Dragon Tales cartoon) just for a few minutes of self-inflicted solitary confinement. It helps to remind myself that what I am doing, in shaping our kids by God’s grace, is not just for the moment, but to help them become wonderful, grace-full, useful adults for His kingdom. Many of the items on that list, if not all of them, I’ve seen time and again cropping up in the lives of adults who ought to know better. Item #2…isn’t it quirky that we should find it easier to “weep with those who weep” than to “rejoice with those who rejoice”? How amazing that God continues to choose to work in and through us!