This is a long post but hopefully the ending will inspire you.
We are going through a tough season as parents. As many of you know, we are raising three strong willed little boys. Each has their own set of challenges, victories and defeats. In the last month seems like we take two steps forward and one step back.
Thing 1 is our oldest and currently in 1st grade. He doesn’t like school because it is too hard. He begrudges any time that takes him away from playing in the afternoons. Dinner, homework and baths are our battle field. When you only get 2 hours of play time a day, it is frustrating when ANYTHING encroaches on that time…including running errands with mommy, allergy shots, etc. When things don’t go his way Thing 1 resorts to temper tantrums and seething and sassy comments to his parents and Grammy. There is a lot of anger and frustration in our child and I feel inadequate most days to handle it. How do I show him grace and still teach self discipline and self control? How do I keep his respect and honor? We talk about God’s word and the commandments in the bible, but it is still a heart issue. We know that some of his frustration comes from school and we are addressing that issue (to be discussed in a later post). We have instituted a 3 strikes policy which is helping with the sassiness, but other than prayer, how do I teach my son to be selfless, to have a servant’s heart, to be more like Christ? These are questions I wrestle with and an area I feel like we struggle.
Thing 2 is our middle son. He too has some of the same struggles as Thing 1, specifically, self discipline and self control. Lately, Thing 2’s moods swing from happy and outgoing to sad and self loathing. At school his moods are high, the MINUTE he get in my car to come home he turns into another child. I don’t even want to talk to him because if I ask him a question he starts throwing a fit and it continues from there until he gets a strike or has to spend an hour in his room. He then screams for the rest of the trip home because is in trouble and destroys his room when he gets home and gets in even more trouble. It is so bad, that I don’t want to pick my own child up from school because I dread the drive home.
Our third son, Thing 3, is my control freak. He must control everything around him and throws tantrums, gets sassy and threatens to crush himself (all of which he has learned from Thing 1 and Thing 2). He must control every bite of food that goes in his mouth, every piece of clothing that goes on his body, every show on television, where he sits in the room, etc. (He struggles with Sensory Processing Disorder)
DO YOU SEE WHERE I MIGHT BE TIRED, DISCOURAGED, and OVERWHELMED?
After a good cry, I posted on Facebook “Being a parent should not be this hard.” A friend pointed out that with all the frustration I feel with the job of parenting only 3 boys, can you imagine how our heavenly father feels about parenting us.” This reminded me of my bible study lecture by Kristen this week. How does God feel when His gift of grace is wasted? He made the ultimate sacrifice for us and we cheapen and swindle it over and over? The theme has popped up several times in the last few weeks. I love it and hate it when that happens. So I ask myself, how am I like a child that needs to control everything, that wants it all now, that doesn’t control my words and says and does things that makes me unholy, ungodly, ineffective and unfruitful. See attached link for entire lesson on “Cheap Grace”.
Finally, I am so tired. The battles seem never ending. The war seems unwinnable. I am at my lowest in days, I feel horrible (another story) so what do I do? I start playing “Words with Friends”. Guess what my letters spelled? H-E-A-V-E-N! Did you get chills? I did. Do you hear God speaking? I did. It is not my job to win the war. God will do that for me. It is my job to put on my armor of Christ and go to battle until that glorious day when I get to heaven and my battle is over! I have hope and so I will get up and try again and again and pray harder and harder for my heart and my children’s hearts and know that the harder I fight for me and for them, Satan will fight harder and dirtier! I guess that means I am doing something right!
Ps: Heaven was worth 69 points!
I used to be an email administrator, but I gave that up to stay at home with my 3 wonderful boys. Now I work 2 part time jobs as an office manager and as a teacher’s assistance. In my spare time (ha, ha) I am a teacher, nurse, referee, maid, cook, appointment scheduler, chauffeur, life coach, etc for my husband and kids. I can’t complain, I am living my dreams…sometime nightmares…but am truly blessed.