He comes into the living room dressed for the day. The pants of choice are his older brother’s that fall as he walks. The shirt his little brother’s, showing his belly. I looked at him,then called him to come to me. His face hanging low, he obeys right away. As he approaches I feel a tugging at my heart. Questions come to my mind. Why are you going to yell at him, he did get dressed right away? What did he do wrong? Did he disobey?
When he reaches me, he looks up waiting for me to reprimanded. I look at him and say, “ What we have here is a little boy who has pants that are too big because they belong to his older brother. We have a shirt that is too little because it belongs to his little brother. Do you know what this tells me?
He shook his head no.
I continue, “ This tells me that if you didn’t have brothers we would have a naked little boy standing in the living room.”
“A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” Proverbs 15:1
Too many times I get upset with the kids because of my selfishness. I am not getting what I want. I raise my voice. This makes matters worse.
“Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.”
(James 1:19-20 ESV)
Yes, he was wearing his brother’s clothes. Was this really an issue? No.
Since this day, I have found myself being slow to speak about things. Making things light hearted. Since my speaking has been slow, so has my anger. I see a difference in the boys. They don’t seem so afraid when I call them over to talk to me. That in itself has been an eye opener. I do not want my kids to be afraid to come and talk to me.
The peacefulness that has come to our home has been great. Voices are not being raised.
I am not saying that I have it all together. There are days that I fail, but I see a difference.
Let’s be slow to anger. Slow to speak.