To all the young mothers out there struggling with children who are hyperactive with an abundance of sweets and too many gifts to play with all at once but clutters every inch of your living spaces, I admire you. "Have I (the Lord) not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9 NKJV
The path of least resistance comes so easy, while keeping watch over our child's behavior is hard work. But look at the benefits of either action. Which one reaps the better harvest? We get so tired of having to repeat the same chants every day. "Don't pick on your sister/brother, pick up and put away your ______(whatever fits here), don't pick your nose (don't get the first two confused with this one), what's wrong with your hearing, or what don't you understand about 'NO!?'"
Now, if those "gentle" reminders and requests don't work, resort to shouting or screaming. And if that doesn't make their little jaws drop down to their chests, trying throwing something while shouting their name. (Only, try to throw something soft that won't injure your "lit'l darlin" or break into tiny pieces that humiliate you into sweeping up your own mess).
The best that can happen during that tirade is the kid gets off his/her bottom and begins helping you. The worst that can happen is the kid(s) starts grinning or laughing. Oh, if you haven't lost it completely by then, that usually does it! The only wise choice here is to take a book (a Bible seems a good choice) and lock yourself in the bathroom to get your blood pressure down and your courage back up. Hopefully you have more than one bathroom so the kid or kids don't regress in their potty training.
Well, yeah, it feels like only yesterday I was a mother, and only a year since I became grandmother to our daughter's four (she might feel that more than me). What kept me from insisting she have only two and no more? She never seemed in the mood to listen to me talk about the gall and bitter sweetness of motherhood. I wouldn't have it any other way of course since she seems to be in love with their children, but is beginning to consider the blessings of not-at-home learning.
Sometimes, when I hear my daughter trying to discipline those little "hellions" (I always said "not my grandchildren"), I wonder where did she find that voice, and, and, I can hardly bear some of things she's saying in that voice (of course, I exaggerate), and than I hear my own voice with similar words. Oh, no, she learned those disciplinary methods from me?!
Oh, boy, we did this to our daughter? (Of course, it's "we," she has a Father too, you know.) So then, I realize something. My daughter's too far gone to change--she'd never believe she learned anything from me. It was always she and her daddy you know, pretty much like that today. I'm not jealous or anything, mind you. I've always appreciated the fact that my daughter and her father have a neat relationship, all the jokin' around and laughin' (did I mention that some of the jokes and laughin' are about me, sniff, sniff).
I'm good for goin' shopping with, but that's not always guaranteed since my walking isn't so great anymore and my spending is dependent on social security, three fourths of which goes to insurance premiums and meds./drugs.
There's only one thing I can do: take one of the grandkids home for a couple of nights and run after them. Well, actually there's another thing I can do--and that is PRAY! I found this acrostic:
How do you pray in the midst of bad times?
Welcome to Habakkuk, the Hebrew prophet in the seventh century B.C. God taught him how to trust Him when everything is filled with confusion and perplexities. Where is God? What is He doing? Why doesn’t He do something now? Habakkuk sounds like us when life begins to unravel and fall apart.
Habakkuk teaches us how to pray and trust the LORD God when we don’t have the answers. Let’s center our thoughts around an acrostic P R A Y E R.
P – ursue God. That is what prayer is all about. Habakkuk asked, “How long, O LORD, will I call for help, and You will not answer?” (1:1).
R – examine self and confess sin. “LORD, I have heard the report about Thee and I fear. O LORD, revive Thy work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years make it known; in wrath remember mercy” (3:1). The prophet confessed his fears and asked God to revive His work. He prays that God’s work, not his own plans, will be renewed. “Renew your deeds; receive your work,” is the prophet’s confession. He was praying for revival.
The only way we dare approach God is in humility and a plea that He be merciful to us. We need to ask God to do a new work in us. In Your wrath please remember us with mercy.
A – ffirmation of what God is doing. The prophet asked God why He wasn’t doing something about the iniquity, wickedness, destruction, and violence in the land. The LORD told Habakkuk that He was busy doing something. “I am doing something in your days – You would not believe if you were told” (1:5).
Y – ield yourself to the LORD God. Habakkuk did not like what he heard God reveal. "Your eyes are too pure to approve evil, And You can not look on wickedness with favor. Why do You look with favor On those who deal treacherously? Why are You silent when the wicked swallow up those more righteous than they?" (Habakkuk 1:13, NASB 1995).
This is where the prophet grew in His knowledge of God and understanding of His ways with men. What is God teaching me that needs to be corrected? Let us learn to judge everything in the light of His eternal purpose. “The righteous will live by his faith” (2:4). God is still the eternal God, and nothing catches Him by surprise. Nothing can separate us from His love. It is in those moments we must reaffirm that conviction and yield to His sovereignty.
E – xpect God to answer according to His will. “For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea” (Habakkuk 2:14, NASB 1995).
In time God will answer according to His eternal purposes. God controls history. The Babylonians did not rise up on their own. God raised them up to accomplish His purposes in the history of Israel. They were the tool in God’s hand for correction and purification of His people. Look for God’s answer in His Word. God will answer your prayers, and you will be able to stand back in awe and say, “I saw God do it.”
R – ejoice and give thanks to God. Habakkuk closes with a doxology. “Yet I will exult in the Lord, I will rejoice in the God of my salvation. The Lord God is my strength, and He has made my feet like hinds’ feet, and makes me walk on my high places. For the choir director, on my stringed instruments” (Habakkuk 3:18-19, NASB 1995).