Photo Credit Sky Noir
If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him? ~Matthew 7:11
My pastor preached on the promises of God throughout the year last year. I found it encouraging and exciting. The Lord has given me so much and wants to give me so much! Some of the promises in the bible are mine simply because I am His. I can claim them boldly because I’m His child. They aren’t contingent on my actions, attitudes or choices.
…I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. ~Hebrews 13:5
Other promises are contingent on my actions or choices; some require obedience, require me to humble myself, to repent, or to call on Him in order to receive the blessing.
Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee… ~Isaiah 26:3
Call upon Me in the day of trouble: I will deliver you… ~Psalm 50:15
Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. ~Matthew 11:28
And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth: ~Deuteronomy 28:1
I thought about all His promises and how my Heavenly Father must be hoping so much that I will enable Him to bless me, yet I limit Him when I don’t follow through on my end with obedience, trust and whatnot. Oh, how disappointed He must feel, not just over my disobedience but also disappointment that He can not bless me, because He wants to!
Yea, they turned back …and limited the Holy One of Israel ~ Psalm 78:41
I thought about myself and my own parenting style. I want to parent like Him! The more I learn of my Heavenly Father and His care of me or of the Lord Jesus and how He interacted with His disciples, the more I learn about the way I want and need to parent my children.
I want so much to bless my children and to heap blessings on them. Material blessings, yes, but more so gifts of time, outdoor adventures, nature walks, park days, beach days, snuggle-up reading days and privileges of play dates, CD’s at bedtime and special family movies. I want to be a ‘YES’ Mom whenever I can. But sometimes their choices make it such that I can’t bless them. That makes my heart sad.
But these days, I’m less frustrated as I learn to calmly teach my children through these disappointing times.
Some things we talk about:
Sweetheart, the answer is no. I want to say yes but because of your CHOICE (attitude, actions), you are missing out on blessings.
Honey, I know we were going to go to the park this morning but because you CHOSE not to clean your room this morning, you have missed out on the blessing and we will clean up instead.
Sweetie, were you using kind words with your sister/brother today? Because of your CHOICES, you will miss out on the blessing of going to play with your friend today.
Since you CHOSE to hit with your hands, you will now need to wear socks on them. They socks are soft. They will remind you to be gentle with your hands.
I remind them constantly that no matter what their behaviors, words or actions are like, mommy will always love them. My love is not conditional. Then I ask them if they behave terribly, can they still eat breakfast. They laugh and say yes. I ask them if they disobey, will they be able to watch a movie later that day? No, they shake their heads. They get it! I reassure them that they will always have their needs met. Being loved and having basic needs met are not conditional on their behavior but extra blessings/privileges often are based on their CHOICE.
Understanding that it’s not just negative consequences as a result of choices but also the missing out of blessings has helped me in my life, and I believe it is helping my little ones too. I’ve noticed that since I’ve really started using the word CHOICE and CHOOSE intentionally, that they are really starting to connect the dots with how every action/response is a choice and very little choice matters.
What are some of the natural consequences in your home?