Friday, November 9, 2012

Proverbs 31:26

I read an article the other day about how moms react to their children. It focused on the scripture from proverbs 31:26. It says, She opens her mouth with wisdom. The teaching of kindness is on her tongue. It can be ultra difficult to conduct myself with wisdom and kindness when my 6 year old is sassing me about what I need to do for her or how forgetting her folder was my fault. But there aren’t loop holes or stipulations for God’s word. It doesn’t say She opens her mouth with wisdom. The teaching of kindness is on her tongue unless your child has disobeyed you again and refuses to pack her lunch because you bought the wrong flavor yogurt.

A dark cloud of guilt and regrets began to overcome me as I remembered that morning (and a few other mornings and nights) I had with kids. Let’s just say I wouldn’t be receiving any medals for my performance that day. Every morning has a lot of potential to suck. The kids are tired and don’t want to do anything that involves moving. Regardless of how pleasantly I ask them to do something, I’m always responded to with grunts, moans, complaints and hesitation. I’m a very scheduled person. Every minute is spoken for and if the children are off task my anxiety and fear of being late begin to build up. As my apprehension grows it attaches to the kids like static and then they begin to feel rushed, uneasy, nervous and ultimately a frustrated tantrum ball with limps. And the learn it from me. sigh.

That morning I was putting Kylee’s hair up for school and as I was wrapping the hair tie around to secure her ponytail it snapped and broke. Kylee looked at my reflection in the mirror and said, “You shouldn’t pull on those so hard, mom.” I fetched a new hair tie and finished grooming her. But I started thinking about what she said and applied it to our relationships in life. If we tug and pull on them too hard and often it’s only a matter of time before they snap and are no longer useful. (dang that’s such a good metaphor right?!)
I began to examine all of my relationships and the ones that have really been tugged at too hard and could be on the verge of snapping if I don’t apply more kindness, grace and forgiveness to them.
My relationship to Kylee is a struggle and I wish it wasn’t. I battle it every day. I see a lot of (possibly phony) Facebook updates about other people’s kids and how perfect they are; How they chased butterflies together and ate gluten free sandwiches with a side of broccoli and the kid calls their mom “best friend”. While across town I’m sneaking carrots into their easy mac hoping they won’t notice and offering $1 per green bean that is consumed and my nickname isn’t “best friend” rather something along the sound of UGHRAHUH, MOM! Some days are easy and more days are hard. My exhaustion sometimes overrides my ability to repeat speak in kindness to the kids.

I fall short daily at being the perfect mom. At church last week the pastor said we can’t be the perfect parent, but we can be a praying parent.

I Lord I pray that you renew my patience daily. Fill me with the same grace that you freely show me. Help me to demonstrate Your love and kindness to my children regardless of my daily circumstances. Break the spirit of stubbornness in both myself and Kylee and replace it with your peaceful presence. Give me the confidence, wisdom and boldness to teach my kids Your way, not my way.