Tears start streaming down my face as I close Kherington’s bedroom door. She’s screaming my name because I didn’t let her turn her fan and heater on (the usual procedure before bed). I’m emotionally exhausted. I go to my bedroom and start busying myself with something, trying to fight back a breakdown. As a parent, you know this feeling all too well. But the toddler stage is new to me.
I started reading a daily devotional called Jesus Calling by Sarah Young, recommended to me by a prayer mentor. Two days ago, the writer says to start a new habit of saying, “I trust you, Jesus.” So I say it over and over again in my head. Then the familiar comments of other mothers, “this too shall pass,” comes and goes. But it doesn’t make it much easier. Because I have to live with the toddler stage NOW, not to mention the raging pregnancy hormones.
Am I disciplining right? Am I not doing enough? Are we showing grace? Is she going to grow up and reject Christ because I didn’t discipline right? Why is she acting this way? Is she teething? Of course, I think of every possible behavior cause, yet Brett simply says, “she’s a sinner and needs to be disciplined.” Yes, no matter what this author says or that expert says, the Word of God is my Lamp and lights my path, especially in child-raising. So as Brett, the head of our home as instructed by God, disciplines Kherington, I fight against Satan’s arrows of doubts and questions going through my head regarding our attempt to do everything right to obey God and model Christ’s love.
“I trust you, Jesus.” “I trust you, Jesus.”
Then His voice responds back, “I know how you feel.”
“What was that Lord? “
Then the image comes into my mind of how we are no different than the toddler screaming in bed. I can imagine my Father in Heaven, looking down at this earth with the same feelings and frustrations.
“I know what’s best for you!
Why do you fight me?
Why do you not trust me?
Why do you get angry with me and blame me?
Why do you selfishly turn to the world’s idols looking for comfort?
I’m here. I’m never leaving you or forsaking you!
I discipline because I love you.
I love you.
I love you.”
The same exact thoughts I have towards Kherington. And now I can hear Jesus’ gentle yet strong voice saying the same thing to me.
“Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are–yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” ~ Hebrews 4:14-16