Tuesday, August 16, 2011

A lesson in patience

I lost my patience with my little girl this morning.

I was cuddling in my bed with Amerie and Lexi, watching the Disney Channel.  Amerie decided to jump out of my bed to grab something, and in so doing, she knocked the cable adapter plug out of the wall, filling my room with the very loud sound of "tv snow."

It was an accident.  She's 4.  She saw the object she was after and nothing else, in the moment she hopped off my bed.  I should have just plugged the cord back in and we could have gone back to Jake and the Neverland Pirates.

But instead, I snapped at her to be more careful.  And then I plugged the cord back in like it was a huge effort for me to do.

I'm not proud of myself.  I don't even want to admit it here.  But even though I pray daily that I can have an abundance of patience with my kids, especially during times of "childish immaturity,"  sometimes I'm really glad there's no one in the room to see me drop the ball.

After my lovely display, she started to cry.

"Mommy!!" she said, "I'm just a kid!!  I don't know what I'm doing."

Wisdom from a 4 year old.  And words that convicted me quicker than anything else could have.  I've been losing my patience with her a lot lately.  She's my "accident prone" child.  And (one of) my "I hear you, but I'm choosing to ignore you" children.  As much as I'd like to be SuperMom, sometimes I lose my cool.  Even when she's not acting in defiance, just childish immaturity.

As soon as she said those words, my heart broke a little.  I immediately scooped her up onto my lap and told her I was sorry for losing my patience.  I told her I knew that she didn't do it on purpose, and I asked her to forgive me.  She gave forgiveness freely, along with a hug and a kiss.  And then she jumped off my lap like the incident never happened.

I pray every day for the Lord to help me be the best mother I can be for my children.  I pray for patience in all circumstances, wisdom and insight into every situation.  He has provided it more than I had ever hoped for.  I still have moments like this morning, when I behave differently than who I want to be.  But thankfully, I see it for what it is...just a momentary screw up on the road to Christ-likeness.   And an opportunity for me to learn a new lesson. 

And I'm even more thankful that the Lord is a lot more patient with me than I sometimes am with my own children.  He's an awesome example for me to follow.  :)


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