These kids of mine are a bunch of fun.
And a bunch of work.
Somebody is almost always having a meltdown, a crisis, a secret, a lapse in judgement, a belly laugh, a fear, a concern, a practical joke (our whoopee cushion constantly changes locations) and let's not forget...a question. Or about a thousand.
This phase of life with my kids gives me such appreciation for my parents and some of my friend's parents that allowed me to hang out at their house a lot during my teenage years.
I am learning alot as I teach my own kids about life, Jesus, consequences, responsibility, and so on...
Striking a good parenting balance between easy going and uptight is my goal. But I usually end up being more one or the other rather than a good mix of in between.
Lately I have gotten pretty uptight about stuff left all over the house. Every day. Multiple times a day...
A deck of cards.
I huffed through the kitchen stomping and talking to no one in particular in a rather loud voice about how I felt more like the maid than the mom.
Shep looked at me and said, "Babe, we can give them serious consequences for this. We need to come down harder on them and make them believe us when we say we do not want them leaving stuff all over the house."
I stopped in my tracks and said, "I know we can punish them and make them mind. I just wish they would obey us because they love us."
And there it was.
Truth. And my desire...for my children to obey and not be punished.
Haven't I heard that (or read that) somewhere before?
"If you love me, you will keep my commandments." John 14:15
The Lord expects of His kids the same thing we expect from our own.
Not out of obligation. Not out of manipulation. Not out of aggravation.
Obedience out of LOVE.
It hit me pretty hard.
Parenting is not as clear cut as I want it to be.
I desire for my kids to grow up and be considerate, responsible, and honest folks that love their Lord and love others.
However, just like me, they are bent to go their own way and do their own thing.
Like.......leave their junk all over our house all. the. time.
If I love them~
I will correct them. At times with gentle reminders and mercy. At other times with discipline and punishment that is as unpleasant for me as it is for them.
Because He loves us...He is faithful and kind to correct us.
Because we love Him...we obey Him.
And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love. 2 John 1:6