Do you ever find yourself saying the same things over and over again? Sometimes it is to my children (usually about their laundry or backpacks). A lot of the time, it is also to myself. I don’t need to buy this, or eat this, or insert whatever here. It is frustrating to be on repeat. It is maddening when it feels like no one is listening to you. Worse… No one cares enough about what you’re saying enough to listen to you. Mama is not fond of this at all. No way!! Someone is gonna hear about something. Usually does not end up pleasant but productive. The task gets done but the heart is out of check. “Just do it so she will shut up,” is not really the service heart mindset I was going for. I want my kids to do things, sure, but I am more interested in the why behind them than the fact they can produce an action. Nothing angers these parents more than a bad attitude and an eye roll. 😡

  
I have to confess that I am one of those parents who use this special wonderful season to my parenting advantage. Yep, the naughty list. Now, neither of my kids can seem to recall a year that they have ever been on it or never received anything but a lump of coal; however it apparently terrifies them. My daughter started crying onstage during her church Christmas program that I was directing, because she thought she was going to be on the naughty list. Seriously? So while the other children are praising Jesus and thanking Him for coming to Earth, my child is stressing about a fictional list and that she might not get toys. Sigh. Parenting fail. So. I wanted to make sure she knew that Christmas is not about lists but about Jesus. Yes, she knows this, my 4 year old assures me. Okay… Why were you crying onstage? “My cat died.” “In May,” I replied. “Oh. I don’t know, then.” Okay. Well, are you sure that you know the real meaning of Christmas? “YES, it’s Jesus’ birthday!” Do you realize what that means?

Do we really realize what that means? Sometimes, we need a reminder. It can help our attitudes when they need a makeover, because mine needs it a LOT. It means that our Savior was born for us so we can be free from addictions and compulsions and our sins that weigh us down. He came so we don’t have to live in fear, hurt or regret anymore. He came to Earth to live as a human so He knows our pains and sufferings on a personal level. He came. This still matters, even thousands of years later.

It matters when my attitude stinks and I am not the mom she needs me to be because my attitude gets in my way. She forgives me and shows me a model for how Christ forgives me too. Which is a pretty fast and humbling fix to any mama pride problems I may have been experiencing at the time. It still matters when we remember they are still children who need a balanced mixture of love, discipline and teaching. But, they cannot hear us without love. We cannot reach them if we don’t love them like Jesus loves us; so we need to learn and experience that love for ourselves!

  

This is what we should focus on as we begin a new year. A year full of hope and trusting in God like never before. Even when I have no idea how this story is going to go, it is just letting go of the pen and finally letting someone write it who is a multi award winning author. But for some reason, I get opinions on how my chapters should be, but it’s time to accept the sovereignty of my God. Either I believe or I don’t. I choose to believe. I choose hope. He promises us hope and wisdom. Sounds good to me. ❤️👏👏

Photo Credits:

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