But that’s just how we operate. I’m getting to the point where little things don’t freak me out anymore. Maybe that’s part of the problem, I was never good at freaking out to begin with. Now I really don’t care. The other day I ran past Rahab and Judith, bowling on the floor with their freshly commandeered dozen eggs, while on my way to rescue something in the oven. I didn’t even slow down. I just hollered over my shoulder, “Jael will you get that!”
Eventually you learn that spills wipe up, clothes go in the laundry, and faces wash off. And instead of it being THE END OF THE WORLD, I start to just see how cute they look with sour cream on their face. Or to be able to console them when they spill, instead of yell. And then smile as they bustle off importantly to get a towel. To me this is one of the great things about having kids. The merit of having a very long fuse. Let them rock your boat. And when all your sin floats to the top, let God skim it off. Keep growing, keep shaking it up. Eventually it starts to change you.
Today I noticed my voice starting to rise during crazy baking, “Hey you! Get your hand out of the powdered sugar!” But then I remembered, “Who put her by the powdered sugar? What did you think she was going to do?” How about, “No, no. You can’t have the sugar. But look, here are the leftover coconut flakes. All yours.” I have learned to appreciate the chance to bring my children in, even when they spike my blood pressure. And often I find it is not their sins that make me angry, but mine. They were simply being children. But I was being impatient, selfish, indignant, or more often, lazy and inconsistent in my training of them. God particularly seems to like using three-year-olds to demonstrate this.
Whenever I do something with my kids it is never for the “thing” itself. That would be silly. I don’t have them make cheesecake with me because their extra slobber makes it more nutritious. But because they are more important than cheesecake. I never loose out when I make the point to include them. Baking by itself is just baking. But baking, shopping, cleaning, schooling with children is downright sanctifying. You’re always better for it. And so are they.I was at a mom’s meeting the other night where she pointed out that, “All this parenting stuff? It’s not for them, it’s for you.” Contrary to what we generally may think, they’re not actually the ones with the problem. It’s us. I’m just glad God chose such an endearing way to evict sin in us. I could do it all day. And there’s more where that came from sister.
While Marc and I may still have a long way to go as parents, I delight to see the little changes he makes in us along the way. Tonight Gideon was trying to dash a dripping taco from the stove to the table. For a while he stalled behind Marc’s chair, going back and forth, trying to decide if he should go back for a plate. Meanwhile, Boy sat there shirtless, staring at me blankly while Gideon dripped beans down his back.
Like, that’s all we have in us anymore.