Have you ever told your child to do something OR to not do something and they didn't listen? Maybe you are trying to teach your child good manners, sharing, or a positive lesson. I was thinking about all the things I say to my girls and how these lessons and their reactions are great reminders for my own life in my walk w/ Christ.
I probably tell my girls especially my oldest Malachi that she needs to listen to mama and daddy MULTIPLE times a day. I usually follow up w/ something about listening the 1st time I say something and I shouldnt have to repeat myself. Children have an acute way of just tuning out what is being said especially if its not something they want to hear. When I say children I really wonder if I need to be included in this category as a child of God. ;) How often is God trying to tell me something but I don't listen and I do things my own way and suffer the consequences of those actions. Maybe God even has to repeat himself multiple times before I get it. I think about when I tell my girls to sit down on the couch and one decides to jump and play around anyways and falls and comes crying to me to console them. How often am I that same child crying to God when I'm not obedient and looking for him to console me.
Forgiveness and Love
We can learn a lot from children about forgiveness and showing love. I can discipline my girls and they are hugging my legs or trying to sit in my lap shortly thereafter. They easily forget and don't hold grudges. They are also the best at showing love too. My youngest, Micah, throughout the day comes and gives us hugs and kisses randomly but at the most precious moments. It just melts my heart. I know I could be better/faster at forgiveness and showing love to others especially since I am called to be more like Jesus as a Christian. How blessed am I to be loved, redeemed, and forgiven by God!
I will correct Malachi when she says she "can't do something," because I don't want her to limit her capabilities and I want her to try something instead of just giving up. This is a huge lesson I need to repeat to myself as well because how often in the past have I given up on a goal out of fear or feeling like I couldn't do something- more times than I'd want to admit. One thing about kids that I love (especially really small kids) is that they have tons of confidence. If I ask my daughter if she is an artist, or the best singer, or best anything she will say yes confidently as she shows me her picture of squiggly lines and sings row row row your boat at the top of her lungs.... At this age she could care less about what anyone is going to say about her. If she wants to wear her fireman hat from school throughout our shopping trip to Walmart she is going to do it. If she feels like a good cry/ meltdown (anywhere!?!) she doesnt care who is watching. The emotions of toddlers are mind boggling- ;0!! Oh how I sometimes wish I could be as carefree as a child not worrying about what anyone thinks about my decisions; to just have the confidence to completely walk in my purpose no matter the obstacles placed in my path is what God desires for me.
The joy that my girls experience makes me so happy as their mom. They get to be kids, play, and be themselves. I took them to the library for story time recently and Malachi and Micah rolled around on the floor playing w/ each other and giggling like they were the only kids in the room. Although Im not sure if the other parents appreciated all the noise they were making while a story was being read and after I finally got them settled down some, I smiled thinking about how sweet it is that they play and enjoy each other as well as themselves without a care in the world. If Micah hears music, that she is excited about, no matter where we are she will show off a few of her moves. ;-0. Its pretty entertaining to watch! They are joyful and loved and I can definitely take some pointers from them on enjoying life and sometimes just living in the moment. Yes I may have a never ending list of to-do's but tomorrow is not promised to any of us. Sometimes I just need to stop "being an adult" for a moment and sit on the floor and roll a ball back and forth, have a dance party, build a house out of blocks, play dress up, and enJOY life from the perspective of my girls!