|jennie allen, stuck. (click to enlarge)|
lately i have been having days that convince me i'm doing it all wrong. i'm not patient enough, i don't spend enough time interacting, i don't read enough books, do enough crafts, pray enough prayers. i raise my voice even when i promise myself that i won't. i count down to naptimes and bedtimes and then fight the urge to cry when i get a quiet moment because i am convinced i've wasted another day by not appreciating it. i convince myself that the reason my 2 year old acts out so often is because i haven't found the right way to discipline and teach her. that if i could just figure it out her behavior issues would be solved and she would finally quit pushing her brother over all day long.
i was laying in bed last night feeling completely defeated by this parenting thing and trying to figure out how to do it right. as i laid there crying and exhausted at the thought of getting up and doing it all over again in the morning, i felt a gentle reminder from God that the problem is that I am trying to do it. i am really not praying enough prayers but instead relying on my own means to parent my children. clearly this isn't working out so well for any of us. obviously, i don't think that saying a few more prayers throughout the day is going to solve all my problems and lead to perfectly behaved children. i do, however, think it will lead to a changed perspective on my part and a greater chance of parenting my children in a way that models Christ to them.
"The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in lovingkindness.."
as a Christian, the desire is to be more Christ like in all my ways. i have had the passage above running through my head for the past few weeks during the day as a reminder to pray for a kinder heart, more patience, and a deeper and selfless love for others. the truth is, i will never do it all right. i will always loose my patience more quickly than i want to and i will certainly never find the perfect way to discipline that eliminates two year old behavior. the good news is that i have the perfect example before me in Christ-who when He rescued me from death, also rescued me from the struggle to be perfect.