Hi everyone! I’m Melanie, and I write at “Only A Breath”. I am a software developer by day, writer-wannabe by night, and a blessed wife and mom at all times. I’m a girlie-girl mommy of two rough and rowdy little boys, and I’m learning that many times, they are the ones teaching me…
One afternoon when my boys were playing together, I overheard my 7-year-old son, Isaac, encouraging his little brother. I peeked in the room in time to see him pat his little brother on the back, and very sweetly say “Oh, that’s good! You’re doing a great job building the train tracks!”. Thomas the Train never looked happier, my boys were the picture of contentment, and if i listened closely, I could almost hear the angels sing. I have to admit that I gave myself a little pat on the back.
Isaac sounded so encouraging and mature, I thought. He sounded just like… me! Wow, I must really be doing a great job teaching him how to respect others, I smiled to myself.
Oh, the irony…
Only a few days later, my husband corrected my oldest son for a bad behavior. My son spewed out rude, disrespectful words in return. I wondered where on earth he had heard that kind of attitude. Suddenly, I realized, that also sounded just like me.
Hmm… considering that we just “met”, I am suddenly re-thinking the first impression this is giving you, but we’re being honest here, right?
You see, I want to be a shining light for Christ. I want to point my children to Christ, show them how to love others, and to offer grace and compassion in abundance. However, in order for me to teach this to my children, I must first live it in front of them. Our children listen to the words we say — both the encouraging ones and the disrespectful ones. Be sure, Mom, your kids hear every word you say, …. even when it seems like they aren’t listening.
I had to offer apologies all around after I realized my failure to keep a respectful attitude in my home. Even if we fail, though, God is gracious and forgiving when we turn to Him. By acknowledging our weaknesses, we show our complete dependence on Him.
“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” ~ 2 Cor. 12:9
I am thankful for the lesson I learned that day, and I have tried to keep it in mind when talking to others at home. Often we let our guard down with the people we love the most. I don’t want to take one second with them for granted, and pray that God will help me treat each one in my family like the treasure they are.
Have your children ever taught you any lessons? Have you seen attitudes or actions displayed in them that causes conviction in your heart? If so, don’t lose heart, Mom! You are not alone, and God lavishes grace on those who ask for forgiveness. We can all stand to learn a few things from our children.
Thank you Erika, for the opportunity to share my heart with your blog readers!
-And thank you, Melanie, for sharing such a thoughtful, beautiful post with us!