How many times have you ever said, “How many times do I have to tell you?!” It is so frustrating when kids do not listen to us when we tell them to do something, or, not to do something. Those of you who are parents already know that it is the hardest job in the entire world, yet it is the best job in the entire world. There are numerous books out there about how to parent, how to raise the best kids, and how to do “this or that” in parenting. Here is the thing about “how-to” books. Not every person is the same, so not everything in those books is going to be helpful in your specific situation. Sometimes, the best parenting is done by just loving your children regardless of them acting their ages. Love them by setting rules, sticking to the consequences you set for broken rules, and do not call them names or hit them. Rules are made to be followed, and some choose to break those rules. That’s what we, as human beings, sometimes do. It is hard to watch our kids fall when they try to do other than the rules we have set before them, but we must let them fall. Tell them exactly what you expect from them and what will happen if they do not comply. Love them unconditionally. Some people, I believe, have no idea what it is to love. I do know of one book that will tell you exactly how to treat not only your children, but everyone else around you. Here’s a passage from that book:
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Truer words were never spoken. See, for those of you who do not know, this comes from God’s word. It’s from 1 Corinthians 13: 4 – 7. God loves us like this. God continues to love us regardless of the way-too-many times he thinks, “How many times do I have to tell you?” God loves us so much that he cast all of his anger, and our “misbehaving” on his one and only Son. He gives us rules to follow and a whole list of things to not do because he loves us so! His Word tells us about the things that are sinful. He tells us those things because he knows the hurt that doing those things will cause us. Just like you telling your child to not do something because you know that it is going to be hurtful. But God cannot make our choices for us. He wants us to obey as we want our children to obey. We have to watch our children fall, and when they do, our hearts break. He has to watch us fall. He has to let us fall, so that we may reach our hands up to him to help pull us back up and out of the holes in which we have fallen.
Think about being a child and falling, and you cry out for mom or dad to come help you. Your hands raised in the air for them to pick you up. Their jobs are to help you back up. Good parents want to help their children when they ask for help. God is no different. He wants us to look for him and to ask for his help when we are in such need! We ARE going to fall. We DO have a Heavenly Father who wants to help us up. We HAVE to ask for that help and run to him every single chance we get. God knows exactly what we need and want. He wants us to ask him for those very things. Ask him! Raise your hands to God every time you fall. He WILL pick you up if you ask!
Think about how many times your Father has asked you to do something. Be slow to anger when you have to tell your child numerous times. Love them as you are loved.
Be blessed and be a blessing.