Monday, June 23, 2014

Green Mom or Grace Mom?

How many times have I read online all the things some homeschooling moms get done in a day and I walk away thinking, "wow Val, you need to get on the ball!"  I mean I'm a super mom too. . . .I just have a feeling that I'm more like the green guy below and not the perfectly coiffed, cape wearing, I've got this hero. . . .

Super hero??  Not the kind of super hero most mamas are striving to be right?  Do you ever feel like this?  I love my kids and they are wonderful kids, but they aren't perfect and they have an imperfect mother.  They argue and push my buttons and each others button so well it's scary.  And well, while my Samuel is amazingly bright, he is VERY active.  Samuel needs his hands to be busy the ALL. THE. TIME.  And honestly, it's tiring sometimes.  And sometimes this mama is more like Hulk than a Godly, gentle woman.  Did I mention that this would be a very transparent post?  

I read a scripture a couple of years ago that has stuck in my head.  1 Peter 4:10 states "As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace:" and that scripture just kind of reached off the page and poked me in the forehead.  The mental image that came to me was this:  I was standing under a pitcher of water being poured into me and I had one hand outstretched and that water flowed through me and out my fingers to someone else.  See, I am sure that I often push the good Lord's buttons.  I am sure that my whining and complaining, lack of patience and gentleness make the Lord shake His head.  I am DAILY in need of His grace, which He freely gives.  My children are also in need of grace, because they are children.  But because I'm tired or in pain (chronic pain disease is no walk in the park) or overwhelmed I too often do not extend grace like I should.  I want them to know grace and how to give it to others and I'm the one teaching, or should be, what that looks like.  *Sigh*  And even on the days where all the schoolwork gets done, but Hulk-mom made an appearance, I go to bed feeling like a failure.  

Thankfully, I wake up to new mercies every morning and if I chose to accept that precious gift I can make the new day a better one.  I'm learning.  I'm learning to be an extender of grace.  Grace is unmerited and undeserved and God freely gives it to me when I need it most, our children deserve the same from us.  Grace doesn't mean punishment isn't given for wrongdoing, but it means punishment from a place of love instead of frustration.  I admit this is hard because it's frustrating.  ~Laughter~  I know I'm not alone in this feeling.  Constant arguing, fidgeting during reading time, poking one another evoking arguing or crying is all frustrating.  But if an Almighty God, creator of the universe can extend grace to me in all my mistakes; surely I can offer the same to my babies.  

A couple of weeks ago we were out driving in a storm.  The storm finally moved on and I pulled off the highway because we were trying to decide where to go for dinner and right there was a GORGEOUS rainbow.  A beautiful reminder of God's promise and my youngest, Daniel said, "wow, that's a blessing".  He saw in that moment the significance of God's promise and His grace.  I want my children to know that even in the most stormy situation, whether of their own making or that of someone else, that grace can be given and it's a blessing.  

Hulk mom doesn't appear very often anymore and for that I'm thankful and I give God all the glory for it!  I'm not perfect, but I'm striving to be the woman, wife and mama God wants me to be and that includes being a good steward of God's grace.  I want it to flow from me with ease, even in the most uneasy and frustrating situations.

By the way, Hulk mom only used her voice, but it was enough.  I would hate for you to think I was smashing things.  And this is not a post about letting things slide when punishment is necessary {like lying}, but it is about knowing how to extend grace while teaching right and wrong, without turning into a giant green mom with a deep voice and speaking in one syllable words.    ~Smile~  

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