A Timely Word:: The Myth of Being The Perfect Parent
This morning was rough. Let me preface with one thing:: V has been gone all week.
Titus woke as usual just after Justus around 6:30. We hung out, got dressed for school and I noticed Titus was acting out a bit here and there, but that's not all that abnormal in the rush of getting off to school. His acting out sorta turned to, what seemed to be a sadness. So as I helped him put his tennis shoes on I asked him if he was okay. He started to cry and say he missed V and so we got his shoes on and called Dad. He got to leave a voicemail and that helped. I asked him what else he thought would make this morning get better, and being a product of his mother's weakness, he replied, "Starbucks for breakfast!" So I agreed, telling him that was a great idea and we got in the car and left. All was well.
We pulled in the drive thru and I confirmed with Titus what he wanted. He said he didnt want chocolate milk today he wanted hot chocolate so I proceeded in line and ordered. When we received our ordered I handed it back to Titus and at that moment he realized he didnt want hot chocolate he wanted chocolate milk. Cue MELT DOWN. As he melted down I told him I would keep the Hot Chocolate until he could receive it gratefully. Cue BIGGER MELT DOWN, I am talking flailing and all. Then something different happened. Usually the meltdown will come, we talk a bit about self-control and grateful hearts and all is well in the world of Titus. But not the today. Today, the more I talked the more he got upset until finally he yelled at me. And I am talking YELLED. He told me I was so mean. (as I held a HIS starbucks drink in my hand mind you!) So taken aback, I started crying. Girls, I am not talking just a little tear, I am talking full on ugly, cant control yourself cry. I had a whilwind of emotions:: hurt, guilt from all the transition we have put him through, guilt from not knowing how to handle the situation, guilt from taking him to starbucks to make his morning better instead of pointing him to Christ who is the only one who can truly help, fear for his life, his salvation, fear of his depravity and back to hurt.
Y'all, I know that seems a little dramatic of a response to a 5 year old's yell, but it was so real to me. I went from being hurt that he would ever say I was purposely being mean to him to agonizing over the state of his soul. I generally can handle situations like this but not today folks, not today. My emotions won. The depth of responsibilty to present the Gospel to our children, the Good News of God's saving power out of sin and death and the idea that I HAVE NO CONTROL over God's leading and prodding and presuing my very son overwelmed me. As he yelled in the depths of his selfishness, I was hurt, but more importantly, I was reminded that he is depraved, as we all are apart from Christ. And began to beg God to forgive me for thinking I could be "a certain kind of mom" or do certain things that would win his little heart to Christ. I began to beg God to set Titus and Justus apart for HIS glory.
As we drove, we both stopped crying and forgave each other. After we prayed, I dropped him off at school a happy little man. While sitting in the car outside his school I checked twitter on my iPhone. On it there was a link to a friend of mine's blog entitled:: THE MYTH OF BEING THE PERFECT PARENT. I went straight for it and recieved such encouragement from it. She said, "The goal is not to be a perfect parent. The goal is to be a faithful parent. And as long as my focus is on my own success or failure, rather than faithfulness to and love for the kingdom of God, I have failed." And although my friend is in a different stage of parenting than I am, it was a timely word for me and I told you this entire story hoping that same blog would be a timely word for you.
PLEASE CLICK TROUGH and read it is so good. Thanks Kim!