My daughter is somehow more mature than I am.
Yesterday morning, I was in the kitchen cleaning up after breakfast.
Mindlessly, I organized dishes into the dishwasher, shoved the milk into the fridge, and slid the bottle of honey back into its sticky place in the pantry.
I grabbed the open bag of puffed rice cereal from off the counter and gasped in surprise as the contents spilled out, all over the floor.
My daughter was standing by me. She had witnessed the spill and my reaction.
In her quiet little voice she said, “That’s okay, Mommy.”
And, “I’ll help you clean it up.”
Her gentle response struck me. Would I have reacted that way if it had been her who had spilled the cereal?
I realized something. My kids don’t need me to scold them when they mess up. If they mess up, they know it. They don’t need a lecture from Mom on how to do things the “right” way. Me flying off the handle and being snappy doesn’t benefit them in any way.
When my kids mess up, what they need the most is my compassion, understanding, forgiveness, grace, and unconditional love. They need a soft and gentle reply, just like my daughter gave me.
If I could give my kids that, it would be like opening a box of love over them. They would feel safe and accepted, no matter their mistakes. And that’s exactly how I want them to feel. Unfortunately, my emotions often get in the way.
Thankfully, I serve a God who doesn’t leave me where I am but loves me enough to teach me these little lessons, even if He does have to use my kids to get the message across!
And my sweet girl did help me clean up. ♥
“Let your gentleness be evident to all.” – Philippians 4:5