The past two mornings have been weird to say the least. I’ve always been careful and aware to make sure that my words to my daughters are uplifting, positive and scripture driven. I spoke about our words in one of my previous post and how they speak into our daughters lives for good or bad. With all that, somehow I made the mistake of not minding my words. It was a teachable moment for me and daughter.
It was bedtime and my big girl and I were talking and she mentioned how excited she was for her birthday coming up. I said, “O no, will you become one of those teens with the attitude and slamming doors!” Jokingly, of course, thankfully my girls have never had a bad, disrespectful attitude with me, and I expect them to never will. I’ll touch back on that word ‘expect’ in a bit. The next morning which was Saturday, the day I usually don’t want to cook breakfast, I let the girls know they would be cooking breakfast for everyone. It didn’t matter what it was, I gave options and said go for it. Well, my oldest daughter wasn’t feeling that. She said she would just eat cereal. My youngest daughter was set on making pancakes or waffles. I then let my big girl know that cooking wasn’t’ an option, whether she wanted to eat or not, you’re still cooking for everyone.
Well, as she proceeded to the kitchen and started making things, her expression, mood, demeanor was not very pleasant. See parents, we know our kids, right? We know when their attitude shifts whether happy, sad, stressed, angry or whatever. In this moment, an attitude shifted! The next morning we had a discussion about getting up for online church service. Where I thought she was already awake because she got up about 10 minutes prior, she was still in bed and I was wondering why she hadn’t gotten up like we have been doing every Sunday during this quarantine for service. So I go to get her and when she gets herself together, I could tell the mood change, she wasn’t looking at the television, she was disconnected, her attitude led me to believe she did not want to be there. I rectified the situation by asking why she wasn’t engaged in the tv and looking elsewhere as if she didn’t want to be here. Her response was a confused look as if what I was saying could be further from the truth. So I waited until after service to address it more.
Ok, parents, I know I’m not the only one that can read our children. They say we are wrong in our readings but I say that I’ve been a kid before! During service I could tell she was upset, she is my gentle, tender-hearted people pleaser. I knew I had to talk to her, and so we did. I said a little prayer for the right words, not provoking, not “I’m mom, what I say goes” type of words. As she starts talking and attempting to tell me how she feels, I got it. It was so clear. She explained that I was making a big deal out of something small, but it wasn’t small for me. I explained to her that no matter what you’ve been told or asked to do, especially by your parents, do it with a good attitude. You may not want to do that in that moment, but don’t allow how you feel to dictate your attitude. It shows. I then let her know that I’m preaching to myself right now. You always have to, because as soon as you allow the words to teach your kids to come out of your mouth, you’ll get a big moment of “wow, i do that too!” And I do! I let her know we all do it and this moment right here where God has shown me by letting you know is my heart-check.
2 Corinthians 13:5 Examine yourselves to see if your faith is genuine. Test yourselves…
I proceeded to explain how in moments where we are complaining or having a bitter attitude we should get a heart-check. I said to her that she should not hesitate to tell me when I need a heart-check. Sometimes our motives aren’t in the right place, right? Then she proceeds to tell me that she doesn’t like it when I even joke about her becoming a rebel teen. Her response was, “you joke about it, but I feel that you believe that it’s true about me and you expect me to be that way because I’m getting older.” That’s deep, right? I told you that word would come up again. Remember in a previous post where I talked about our words to our children and what we expect of them? I had a heart-check moment right then. I apologized, reminded myself and let her know that I don’t expect for her to have a typical teenage attitude, I don’t expect for her to have sex before marriage, I don’t expect for her to do drugs or anything else that we parents expect teens to do. With being a teenager aside, I explained I see her as a child of God, who loves Christ and I expect good things from her, I expect her to be respectful, I expect her to make wise choices, I could go on and on of the good expectations I speak over her life. Somehow in the moments of speaking before thinking I’ve allowed my words to speak ill on my daughter.
You might say, it was just a joke. No, the bible tells us that our words have the power of life and death. Proverbs 18:21 I don’t want to speak death, bad, ill, tear her down or anything that doesn’t line up with the word of God over my daughters. So, we both received a heart-check. Myself more so then she did, but that’s a part of parenting, God checking you as well, so that we are in-line with his word for ourselves and our children. Where do you need a heart-check?
For His Glory,