Sunday, April 18, 2010

God's Wheel

Friday afternoon as K and I were on an errand together she said, seemingly out of nowhere, "Mom, when I am a Mommy I am going to answer my kid's questions the opposite way of how you answer them to me."

I almost gasped! Thoughts went racing through my brain about what I had done to make her so frustrated with me. As far as the cyclical nature of intimacy so often goes, I thought we were in a great place. I firmly believe good parenting does not necessitate high approval ratings from your children, but all of my pent up insecurity about my 'performance' as a Mom flooded my mind and heart. I thought back to the light blue Mickey Mouse journal I kept as a preteen. I specifically recall a list I wrote in red ink as a 13 year old of all the things I would NOT do when I was a Mom.  (How I wish I could find that now...for entertainment value!) Was this really starting already? All of those thoughts took about 2.4 seconds before I managed to speak.

"What makes you say that?" I asked.
"Well, when I ask for candy and you say one or two pieces, I am going to let my kids have 4!"
"Oh, well, what else?"
"I don't know," she said.
I went through a list with her that went something like this:
"When your kids want to cross the street without holding hands what will you say?"
"The same thing you say."
"How about when they want to ride bikes without helmets?"
"I will say what you say."
"OK, what if they want to ride in cars without seatbelts?"
She grinned, catching on to my game, "I will say what you say."
"Well, then, what will you say that is opposite?"
"Mainly just when they want a lot of candy... I will let them have it."
"Oh, well, what if all that candy gives them a tummy ache or makes them act really silly." 
"Then I will say what you say too." She smiled sheepishly. 

I didn't have to say anything else. 

I couldn't help but think of all my grand ideas of what I might do differently in given situations if I were God. I don't want His responsibility all of the time, just when it comes to changing the rules in ways that might make life more comfortable and/or fun for me. I was reminded of a Shel Silverstein poem Cabell read to our children last weekend at a child-friendly memorial service. 

God says to me with kind of a smile,
"Hey how would you like to be God awhile
And steer the world?"
"Okay," says I, "I'll give it a try.
Where do I sit?
How much do I get?
What time is lunch?
When can I quit?"
"Gimme back that wheel," says God,
"I don't think you're quite ready yet."
Shel Silverstein


Jenilee said...

I love this post! great example and what a great mommy moment! :)

Mary Lou said...

You are so wise...that is a great on target, just as you are striving to be on target for Him and with Him. Blessings on your week.