As a parent, I expect my children to obey me when I ask them to do something (clean their room; pick up their toys, clothes, shoes,...). I am pleased when they respond after the first request. I sometimes think to myself-"Yeah! I must be teaching them something right". On occasion, that sense of pride begins to overtake my thoughts. I begin to think that my child has turned the obedience corner (so to speak) and I will not have to deal with a disobedient child ever again. Ha!
Maybe a day or two goes by and I ask one of my children to do something they do not particularly enjoy doing (helping with the dishes, fold the laundry,...). Suddenly, my obedient child is replaced by a child that could not have been raised in my household. Who swapped my kind, considerate child with the one in front of me right now that is whinning about matching the clean socks in the laundry basket?
As I ponder this interesting Jekhl and Hyde phenomena that happens in my house, I cannot help but wonder how my Heavenly Father wonders about my reactions when He asks me to do something.
I can say there have been clear times in my life when I know His good and perfect will for me and I have obeyed whole-heartedly. However, I also know there have been times when I have whined and pleaded with God to let me do something else-something that I enjoyed instead of something that I either knew nothing about or that I clearly did not enjoy.
Thankfully, I serve a God who loves me no matter what my attitude. He desires obedience but He loves me even when I whine. His patience with me is tremendous. Just as I continue to teach my children the importance of obedience (the first time), God continues to teach me the same lesson.
Why do I too often think and react like my children? I believe it is because I am still growing spiritually. I too need a loving parent to guide me gently into obedience. I need to remember how loving but firmly God teaches me to obey and then try to model that to my children.
Do you struggle with thinking like your children too?