Recently God’s been showing Himself to me through parenting as He has in the past, and as I’m sure He will many times in the future. Today He gave me a real glimpse, not in a condemning way, but in a way that made me want to cling to Him more tightly, of my overwhelming shortfall when it comes to patience with my kids. I am encouraged at how He’s helped me to grow in this area–He’s been working on me pretty intensely, especially since Little E’s birth, and I know He’ll continue with the birth of JP. However, I saw that even my irritation with the kids over their wrongdoings, although normal for a young mother, “does not achieve the righteousness of God” (James 1:20).
The verse before that one is what I need: “But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger.” How much better, when my children do wrong, instead of irritation or anger, to respond with discipline given in love and with patience? I could see immediately, though, that the kind of godly response I should give is overwhelmingly impossible for me to do on my own. Even while writing this blog, I’ve lost my temper with a disobedient child! Thankfully, I have two verses to give me hope: “But He [Jesus] said, ‘The things that are impossible with people are possible with God’ ” (Luke 18:27) and “He [God] has said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness’ ” (2 Corinthians 12:9).