Training children in the way they should go is a difficult, and often mind boggling task. While I struggle to preach the gospel to myself everyday, I’m tasked with extending grace to my children and teaching and helping to expose their need for our wonderful Savior.
There are so many days where I feel like I can do nothing right and there is simply no fruit on the vine, and never will be.
While standing in the checkout line at the grocery store, the earth shattered with the screams of a toddler throwing a tantrum for all the public to hear.
I’m pretty sure the people at the bank across the street could hear him screaming, “I want apple. I want apple. Waaaaaaaa!!!!” at the top of his God-given lungs.
Like every mom, I wanted to crawl in a hole. There was nothing I could do. Not then, not in that moment.
At home it’s easier to deal with enormous temper tantrums, but in the middle of his crocodile tears and screaming pleas for an apple with three other people waiting in line behind me? Not a chance.
I got knowing looks from other moms and the look from grandmaw on aisle 3, but I just smiled, paid my bill, and rolled us out into the parking lot.
I’m so grateful my toddler acts out because it allows us to really see his heart.
He doesn’t pretend; he’s just him, sin-stained heart and all.
We talk about patience, and we talk about happy hearts until I’m blue in the face. We administer discipline and the knees of my jeans are worn from kneeling before him (and Him) in exhaustion. And as hard as it is to rinse and repeat every day, I’m grateful because if he was a rule following child, I wouldn’t know his inner battles – not as easily. I wouldn’t be able to see what I needed to work with him on. I’d constantly be guessing, drawing him out, and wondering if he’s truly being affected by the Gospel.
Today I challenge you to see your toddler’s tantrum as a gift. Because these kids we talk about giving us a run for our money? We have it easy. I’d put my money on the Pharisee kid being much harder because I’m prone to laziness, and I doubt I’d be so diligent to draw my rule following kid out…or too busy writing books or baking stuff from scratch. Why should I? He acts just fine.
Being a parent isn’t meant to produce godly children, but it can help produce godly parents.
Have you ever thought about toddler tantrums this way? Share you thoughts in the comments!
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