We started a new Bible study called Parenting By Grace and it's been really insightful. One of the questions it asked was "what is one thing you've learned from your kids the last week?" - learned from my toddler and almost toddler- are you serious? Well, the question has made me ponder for a few days and tonight God spoke to me loud and clear on a rare walk by myself this evening after the boys were asleep.
Ask anyone what the favorite word of a toddler is - I bet almost 100% of people would say that it's "NO" (all caps to emphasize how loud and emphatic it sounds coming from the mouth of a 2 year-old). Well, my sweet and loving 2 1/2 year old has progressed way past "no" - his phrase of choice seems to be "I DON'T WANT TO." Hmmm. Now, as a caveat, I do have to say that overall, Jacob is a great kid - he uses his manners most of the time and says thank you and is a really really good sharer with his brother. He is very very sweet and I feel very lucky to be his mommy. With all that said... i.don't.want.to. is making me crazy! What a blessed day it would be if I said "Jacob come eat - supper's ready." and low and behold, he comes running in the kitchen saying "okay mommy ready to eat." Or if I said "Time to brush your teeth" and Jacob said "sure mommy, that's a great idea..." You get my point. Really in the grand scheme of things, no big deal, but enough times a day and I'm ready to jump off a cliff. (of course not really, but in mommy language anyway).
So tonight on my walk, I was praying (out loud - neighbors if you saw me, sorry. I'm not crazy - just having a little talk with my God!) for patience with both my boys and especially for the right way to respond the next time Jacob says " I don't want to." God gently reminded me that (gulp) I DO THAT ALL THE TIME TO HIM!!!!! Not necessarily even on purpose and in reality I don't even say it out loud, but my actions sure scream it loud and clear. Oh God - I don't want to disobey you - I pray that I would be willing to say "Sure Lord, here I am..." whenever He asks me to do something.
yep, That's a tough lesson I am learning from my kiddos. What a model God as a parent is for me... even though I scream "I don't want to," He loves me still and truly wants whats best for me. The perfect model of parenting by grace. Or Lord help me every day. Every second. To be the best mommy I can be to my precious Jacob and my big boy Jonathan.
*** oh - the picture has nothing to do with this post, but I just really love this. It shows Jacob's funny personality. I love these boys!