I have started reading Charles Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening. It is SO good, you guys. Well, recently, I read a sentence that kind of cut me to the core. So I tweeted it…like us modern day sharers do ;)
It brought on the thought that if I don’t want to be separated from the Lord forever, why do I – in my decisions and actions – live as though I wish to be separate from him? Why do I act as though he isn’t my eternal hope?
I think as a Christian, we get so caught up in the tings that we “can’t” do that we lose focus on what we can. We lose focus on what we are free to do. Free to live. Free to be free. Those whose destination is separation from the Lord forever aren’t free. They are held by the bonds of this world. And I think as I chose sin over righteousness, I am choosing bondage over freedom.
As I pondered this thought, I thought about my kids. What actions, attitudes, character, and traits I desire for them. And this thought translated over to my parenting as well. [Don’t you love that? The Lord is so complete in his guiding.] If my heart is cynical and mean, how can I teach my kids to be kind? If what my kids hear while I am on the phone is gossip or hurtful, how can I teach them to love and respect others? If my words and actions are evil and teach sin, how can I expect my children’s actions to be pure and righteous?
I struggle with anger. Anger when things don’t go my way. Anger when things are inconveniencing me. Anger when I’m overwhelmed. And as my kids observe me and how I react to thing, I am only teaching my children to act in anger when things do go their way. I am teaching my daughter and inappropriate way to handle her emotions. We are going to be disappointed, let down, and inconvenienced. But I don’t want my daughter to learn that the way to handle that is to act frustrated, snippy, and angry towards others.
I cannot expect the fruit of righteousness to grow from the seeds of evil. I cannot expect to grow apples from pumpkin seeds. So if I am desiring to cultivate a heart of kindness and love from my children, but am acting in impatience when they interrupt me, how can I expect the end result to be anything but replicating what I do?
So instead of feeling discouraged here, instead of feeling condemned, instead of feeling simply like a pretty awful mom, let’s start today. This minute. Lets put on the breastplate of righteousness to guard our hearts. Lets allow the Lord to gently reveal to us our shortcomings, not so we can just feel bad, but so that we can change and in turn, be happier more joyful mothers. Wives. Friends.
Do you struggle with something that you see translating to your kids? How do you handle that?