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Sinners in the hands of an angry mom.

October 1, 2008

sometimes we all need a time out šŸ™‚

with apologies to Jonathon Edwards (Jonathon Edwards the preacher not the politician lest Zoanne becomes confused šŸ˜‰ )

Proverbs 31:26 She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.

Recently I have been convicted by the tone and example I have been setting for my children. Instead of gentle direction and prayerful intent with them, I have been a font of raised voice and angry words.

I wish that I could say that this realization came to me during prayer and Bible meditation. Unfortunately, that is not the case. God is so merciful in dealing with me and my hard heart. He provided me with a wonderful husband who is not afraid to speak the truth.

“Karen, I need you to stop talking to our children like that. It is not the way a lady speaks or leads her children”. He then pointed out several examples of how they followed my lead both positively and negatively.

WOW. At first I felt righteous childish indignation. “Didn’t you see and hear them?” Then the truth and wisdom of his words struck me down. I was on their level and not leading them at all.

This made me stop and go over incidences where I had disciplined both positively and negatively.

Positive: One day Tommy with pride and “I don’t want to listen to my mum” attitude filled the dishwasher with dish soap rather then dishwasher detergent. He came to me with downcast eyes and led me to the kitchen. We had a roomful of bubbles. I laughed. Talked to him about natural consequences and handed him a mop. Together we laughed and cleaned the floor. He really listened and learned from this incident. Hmmm.. an actual happy memory associated with disciplining my child.

Negative: Malachy and Tommy in their *ahem* wisdom decided to procrastinate with homework and whine about it … a lot. Did I take them aside and talk to them individually about responsibility and respect? Nope. I yelled at the two of them. End result, tears and lots of them. No real life lesson was learned that night I am afraid.

What was different? Why had I been able to positively influence one day and not the next? I was talking to Laurie about it and we came to this conclusion. Their wee sinful hearts were not different, it was my attitude in parenting. Really a reflection of where I was that day, moment, in my relationship with God. When I accept His Grace and stay in His Word, I respond in kind to my family. We pray, play and stay happy together. The inverse is also true. When I am stuck in selfish mode – avoiding scripture, prayer, and my role as wife and mother – there is a direct correlation in how I interact with and discipline my children.

God Does not want us to ignore the sin in our children, but to shepherd them back to His grace. To do this as moms we need to accept for ourselves His Grace for us. We are not all June Cleaver or power moms, nor are we supposed to all be cookie cutter moms.. that is not important. We are called though to raise up this generation. How we invest in our children now has more ramifications then the Dow Jones ups and downs.

This is an ongoing area of growth for me. I am so grateful for the great cloud of witness’ in Heaven and on Earth. Praise Him! They do encourage me to press forward in my devotion to God and family. To quote Hillary Clinton (sorry guys) “It takes a village” Without my God, family, church family, and friends I would never be able to attain any balance with my faith and my children.

Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go;
even when he is old he will not depart from it.

I take this verse as both a promise and a warning. When I sow anger they will be angry and fearful with others and also with their relationship with God. Thankfully, when I sow justice coupled with love and humility they will grow to be loving men (and woman) in life and in His kingdom. I pray that my children’s lives and faith will be a positive reflection of what I have sown.

Keep on praying for me and my family. šŸ™‚

Good related linkie looes

ESV online

Positive Discipline

Shepherding a child’s heart

Jonathon Edwards

3 Comments leave one →
  1. October 1, 2008 2:49 pm

    That is excellent, Karen, and a reminder I need daily..esp. when I’m sick. I tend to get cranky and think the world should revolve around me. And, boy have I been hearing myself in one of my bossy, little boys. YIKES! It is definitely a wake up call.

  2. zoanna permalink
    October 1, 2008 11:51 pm

    Clever title, and thanks for the clarification on the preacher/politician potential problem.

    You’re amongst friends in this walk called Motherhood. Sometimes it’s pretty and sometimes it ain’t.

  3. October 2, 2008 9:21 am

    Thank you ladies. It is nice to have an affirmation that I am not alone in the struggle. From one non-June cleaver to another šŸ˜‰

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