Friday, March 06, 2009

The Scandal of it all

Seems my sweet angel, Bella, has a devilish side to her. Don't we all? Yep. It's called the sin nature and we're born with it no matter how amazingly cute, beautiful or innocent babies look.

Last week in church, our number was flashed at the front of the church to indicate that we needed to attend to one of our children's needs. It's usually for a diaper change or to take one of the boys to the bathroom. Nope. Not this time. This time, it was because my sweet baby threw another little girl out of her chair and tried to steal her pacifier. Nice. Sovereignly, my husband was the one who responded to the call. When he got back to our seat and told me what had happened, I actually started to cry.

I had such a long, hard week of discipline with my little girl, and I was discouraged by this report. I was also embarrassed to say the least. In moments like this, which happen a lot in my world, I want to look around at all the people witnessing my children's bad behavior and reassure them that, yes, I do discipline them at home. Consistently. No. Faithfully. No. But, I do discipline them. I promise. I know it doesn't look like it. But, I do...really. I do.

My ever discerning and gospel-centered husband quickly and rightly concluded what was going on in my heart at the moment and wrote a little note to me on the bulletin. It read something like this, "The scandal is not that our little girl is a sinner. The scandal is that God loved her enough to send His perfect son, Jesus, to shed His blood for her sins."

I was so helped in that moment. I was set straight in such a gracious, God-glorifying way. My heart's response to my husband's little note was, "YES! It's true. It is scandalous that the Perfect Creator of the Universe would condescend in such a way to love us and save us from our sins and from eternal death!"

So, today, when my daughter, unprovoked, smacked some boy in the library and made him cry, I was able to not be so surprised or embarrassed by her behavior but instead remember that I know God, her Savior, and have been given the amazing privilege of leading her to this Savior in these moments. I pray that one day, she will convincingly recognize not only her need for a Savior but also the Savior Himself, Jesus Christ who came to seek and save sinners just like her.


Toby & Kelly said...

I'm feeling your pain, truly. And you are so right - what a Savior! I'm also wondering if the little boy in the library was the same boy my son rugby-tackled. If so, that kid is having a rough week and should probably find a more peaceful library to visit...

zoanna said...

I'm sorry for laughing, but it was my first response after reading "she stole the pacifier." I'm sure it was not funny to you. It wasn't until recently, honestly, that I could past my embarrassment of my child's behavior and be thankful that people are pointing it out (as opposed to helping me hide it). Was it Tedd or Paul Tripp who wisely said something like, "We shouldn't be surprised when our child sins. It's natural. We should surprised when he doesn't. That's grace!" (Not a direct quote, but keeps me encouraged nonetheless.

Tara said...

such good gospel reminders! I have a little boy that sounds a lot like your little girl... :)

krista said...

Thank you for sharing this.

I've been struggling to persevere just as you have, and your hubby's wise words really encouraged me too.

These days, my heart wants to indulge in self-righteous indignation when my 3 yr. old's pattern of behavior is to disobey when her infant brother needs mommy and pronto!

I'm torn between resentment, that I have to put my crying son down/interrupt his nursing to discipline her, and humility, because I know God grants me grace upon grace despite my ongoing and willful sin.

Anonymous said...

I love my grandaughter, the little sinner that she is. This too shall pass. gma

Anonymous said...

Bri! Oh my goodness. That was me that was her teacher in that class. Let me just tell you that she is downright sweet and adorable. We actually turned our faces and laughed when she did this. We know that she is little and has two older brothers! She's got to protect her stuff! ha ha. I'm so sad that you actually started to cry. Let me comfort you by telling you that she has the sweetest and most tender heart. As soon as she does something like that, she is very quick to be apologetic and to share whatever it was she was trying to keep to herself, or whatever. Her heart immediately softens. I look forward to seeing her beautiful doll baby face waltz in the room with her Uggs, her miniskirts and her coordinating tights and hair bows. I can't stand it! She'll get through this stage.

If it's any consolation, my son who should know better who is almost 6 now, runs up the stairs and tells me that we aren't friends and slams his bedroom door. Yes, we are working on that one.

Are babies are sinners and if they are anything like their Mamma (me), they will struggle with obedience and authority all of their life.

Anyway, again, she is a JOY and I LOVE HER :)

Anonymous said...

Like Zoanna, I had to laugh too! I laugh in all the wrong moments, when it comes to kids. Good thing I wasn't the teacher that day! ;) Sounds like our house. Owen has taken to becoming angry and beating on Duncan. Poor Duncan has several scratches to prove it!