It all started so well this morning. We had a playdate planned for the day. I was turning my back on my dirty house and was going to go and have some time with a friend and her children. I tried to reach her early this morning. I had a couple of important questions to ask her before our playdate. She did not answer. I was understanding. She has three children to my one. I can imagine having three children to get ready to go somewhere is more stressful than I can imagine. My good and perfect gift and I needed to go into town to pick up those few items from the store, get allergy shots and drop off our grocery items back home and head out to our exciting playdate.
As we were on our way to play, my friend calls me to say she would not be able to make it. Her car had broken down. She apologized over and over and I told her not to worry we could reschedule. I began to make some turns and good and perfect gift realizes we are heading back home. Time for me to have to be the bearer of bad news. I tell him that we have to go home because our friends are not going to be able to make it to the playdate. I have no membership card to get in. We had been invited as their guest to go and play today. He began his usual meltdown in the car. I'm trying very hard not to be angry as I too am disappointed that we would not be meeting friends today. It had been two years since we last met with them. the disappointment was just to much for him to handle. As we get to our driveway, in my mind I am pondering how God holds me up when I too am disappointed. I ask my good and perfect gift to come, sit with me on the couch under the nice warm blanket. It helps to soothe him, while I have some calm down time too from bearing the screaming and kicking from the back seat.
We finally are in a calm state of mind. I tell my good and perfect gift that we are going to have school after lunch since our day got turned around. He begins to argue. I take away his privilege to speak with me. I don't tolerate a child acting authority over his parents. We eat our lunch in silence not speaking a word. I enjoy the quiet. It has been such the morning, All filled with loud expresses of emotion. I begin to get my mind in gear for school after I finish eating. He again begins to argue once his meal is finished. I send him to his room this time. I am being worn down minute by minute. I don't feel like being worn down , I want this day to turn around desperately. I can feel my self begin to boil inside. I am seconds away from becoming a yelling ,screaming mess. I don't want to explode. I don't want the enemy of my soul to win this moment over me. I am praying "God please help me to calm down. I'm so Angry right now and I need you to help me."
Once his time is up I have him apologize and ask for forgiveness. No sooner than he gets done he cleans up his lunch trash and as usual he tries to pick up too much stuff at one time. always in a hurry, always dropping things . He never takes his time because he thinks he has to be first one done at everything. He spills pear juice on the floor and begins another meltdown! Do I really have to deal with another one Lord? So close together? All of my scripture references on my refrigerator have not been looked at instead I too begin my own spiral downward. I erupt like a volcano on my good and perfect gift. He cries louder and louder. He tells me "Mommy, you are scaring me, please stop screaming at me!" You would think this would cause me to stop. But I don't, I'm letting all the stuffed anger out of my body from this morning and it feels good to let it all go. Why can't I find another way to get this anger out of me. Is there really another way? I send good and perfect gift to his room for the rest of the day. I can't bear to be his Mommy today. I feel like giving up, giving in. Throwing in the towel and saying " I quit!" Be done with being a wife , be done with being a mommy, pack my bags and go live in a cave for the rest of my life! Can I be this honest? Can I take the mask off and be more than real with you? I'm sure you must have felt this way too right?
The enemy of our soul would love nothing more than to have us do this very thing. Give up and give in. But we must realize, that giving up and giving in means we let him win!
If we are truly followers of Christ are we going to lay down and let the ememy have us? Have our kids? Have our marriage? Our life?
After I have had time to myself reading Ann Voskamp's daily posting and listening to the soothing music on her site, I stop and pray, I pray to ask for God's mercy and forgiveness for the terrible sin that I have just committed against Him and my good and perfect gift. I receive His forgiveness in my spirit. I go to my good and perfect gift, I humble myself as a parent and I apologize to him. I ask for his forgivness too. He to apologizes for his meltdowns and for arguing with me. We embrace for a long moment. I'm so broken inside over what I have done. My eyes begin to swell with the sting of wet once more. Our eyes meet and look for a moment at one another. " Are those happy tears? He asks. "No, I say, These are very sad tears, I tell him. " Mommy is so very sad for the way I have treated you just now. Mommy is so very sorry for the way I have disobeyed God. I tell him as I wipe away the warm wet from my face. " But Mommy, I forgive you and God forgives you too? His words so innocent, so pure, so full of unconditional love. Ready to love me the fallen Mother to him I am. Just as the love of my Father. So ready to take me into his arms and love on me, when I am so undeserving of it all.
He asks me to show him Grace, At first I hesitate because I'm a stickler at not going back on my word. I want to follow through on everything I say. But I hear my Father's voice whisper quitely "I do not treat your sins as you deserve." I give good and perfct gift Grace. Because I too have been shown Grace, not just on the cross, but in this moment. I have been shown grace. How dare I treat one of God's little ones with such ugliness, with such contempt in my heart. God could have disciplined me in this very moment by taking away my voice as he did with Zachariah in the new testament. But God did not treat my sins as they deserve. He asks us to do the same. To delight in showing grace as he does. He gives us moments in each of our days to be merciful and gracious to others. Are your eyes open to the ones you need to show mercy and grace to? In your home? In your circle of friends? At work? Driving on the road? Your own children?
Father, this moment is a very hard story for me to share. I am embarrased by it. I am ashamed of it. I would give anything to turn back the clock and make this terrible day become only a fleeting of a mist. I know even in these times there are lessons to be learned from you. Thank you again for not treating my sins as they deserve. I love you Father! Good and perfect gift, thank you for showing me the unconditional love of the Father, it is because of you that I can truly see him as he really is. Thank you God for my good and perfect gift. In the most holy name of Jesus I pray amen.