Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Indulgences-Comfort vs. Discipline

After a long afternoon of football, baseball and cheerleading...still working on that kitchen floor :)
I love how the Lord reveals himself. Sometimes it is through scripture, other times through an awesome visual in your daily life, other times its through a friend at a nail salon :).
My Ribbit has the tendency to cling to the person who just disciplined her. For example, when I had asked her for the 15th (no exaggeration) time to finish her pancakes and get her chapel uniform on this morning I ended the demand with a spanking to her behind. She likes to talk as much as possible and in the morning this usually means she doesn't eat all of her breakfast and is crying in starvation as we pull up to school. Immediately after I spanked her, she started tearing up and grabbed me. She wanted me to hold her even though I had just spoken harshly to her and physically hurt her.
Mothers Day breakfast

My boys are opposite. The minute I even raise my voice at them they either shut down and begin to pout or declare "mommy is mean" and haul butt to find Adam. I will let you guess which boy behaves which way.
I was talking about this situation with one of my very best mommy friends, Leianne while we were getting a pedicure and manicure. Her son Kason comes homes with us everyday after school and she and I had compared his behavior with Ribbits. They both do the whole "cling on to whoever just yelled at me" bit. Leianne and I were discussing about what is the best way to respond? Do we completely cuddle them and wrap then in our arms to immediately reconcile? Do we tell them to go to their rooms and think about their bad behavior. Do we give in to their sometimes crocodile tears and tell them that we are sorry for acting out in anger? Do we ignore them and reconcile later when both of us are back on stable emotional ground?
Mothers Day Brunch

We had an audience that day as we were the last ones in the salon, with about 4 people working on our hands and feet. I could tell that they were listening and either very ready for us to be done or very inquisitive as to what our final answer would be.
It was a very clear answer. Has the Lord ever turned away from me when I wanted comfort? More than that, the Lord does not withhold his love from us, even during His discipline. The minute he convicts us he begins to guide us back to him...literally wrapping us back into his arms, into his grip. He doesn't tell us to go think about our behavior before he will redeem us or before he will once again show favor on us. He doesn't want us to "feel" his aggravation or for us to wallow in our fact its the opposite. Its just like the prodigal son whose father RUSHED to greet him, clothed him, ordered a feast to be cooked and immediately enveloped his son. There was no "lecture" or "you should be ashamed" talk...there was no time for that because the son had returned.
Isaiah telling me that he doesn't need to hold my hand because he can hold his own hand!

This thought has truly taken me a week to even pen. I imagine it will take me even longer to fully process it and put it into action daily. I tend to be very black or white with my children...I am either happy or upset with their behavior.....its honestly something I am super ashamed of. I want to be a mother who offers redemption, love, comfort and compassion regardless of whatever behavior/sin/attitude we are currently disciplining. I am so thankful that my little Ribbit is able to show me in a tangible way how the Lord wants me to parent. To indulge myself in my sheep, to truly let the Lord be my shepherd so that I can shepherd my own flock.

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