I couldn’t resist sharing this story and it gives you a glimpse of my daily parenting (the highs and the lows!). Yesterday I happened to walk by Madden’s room where all the children were playing together (for some reason they LOVE getting to play in Madden’s room with all the baby toys…not sure about that one!). At any rate, just as I was walking by, I see Miles jumping off the big rocking chair and diving into the floor below. Well, jumping off the furniture is a big no-no at our house and all the kids know this rule (including Miles, though he forgets the rules more than any other kiddo). He caught my eyes, knowing full well that he was going to be disciplined and so head down, he made his way to me and we headed into the bathroom (this is where all discipline in our home takes place, I think in part because I watched my friend Erin discipline her kids in the bathroom so it just seemed normal). I decided to take a little bit different route with Miles in the way I explained the gospel and why its important to obey Mommy. The following conversation took place:
Me: Miles, do you want to go to heaven?
Miles: No (shaking his head).
Me: You don’t want to go to heaven and live with Jesus?
Miles: No (shaking his head even more).
Me: You don’t want to live with Jesus? (at this point I’m thinking I have just utterly failed him and he hates God because as God’s agents we expect him to obey and do what is right).
Me: Why Miles?
Miles: Because I like you.
Can I just say my heart melted a little? He totally thought I meant he was going to have to leave our home to go live with Jesus now and given that he’s already had to make a major move once, he wasn’t about to agree to do that again!! Not even for Jesus! I then explained that I wasn’t talking about now but one day when he died and that Mommy and Daddy would be in heaven with Jesus and that we ask him to obey because we know that as he learns to obey and submit to us, he will come to understand how to obey and submit to God. And while Miles’ was still disciplined for jumping off the rocking chair, I couldn’t help but give him one extra hug for just being my child. And though I feel like a failure most days and explode in sheer anger more frequently than I should, Miles loves me and wouldn’t trade living here with us, even for heaven (though we’ll have to work on this later!!). Thank you Lord…that’s entirely more than I deserve.