Thursday, June 30, 2011

Give Them Grace

I am thrilled to be reading a lot more this Summer thanks to afternoons at the pool with confident swimmers and competent lifeguards. I currently have 4 books going...because that is the wacky way I roll...but I actually finished one last week. That is a feat that hasn't occurred in at least a year!

Today I started Give Them Grace by Elyse Fitzpatrick and Jessica Thompson. Because I am only two chapters in, I am in no position to write a review, but stumbled upon a great one that summarized how I am already feeling about it here, if you are interested.

I am a big fan of authentic parenting. I strive to be very intentional about helping my children see our Christian faith as applicable to their REAL life, not just Sundays.

I am also a big fan of good behavior. Especially in public when everyone is watching 'that poor frazzled Mama and those wild triplets.' (the dialogue in my head) I am just competitive enough that I want to prove their misconceptions wrong. (Yucky, but true.) I believe obedience, respectful behavior and self control are important.

We have a fair number of 'heart' conversations around here in regards to discipline...but we also have A LOT of conversations that could be classified as 'performance-based.'
You can do better than that.
You need to figure out how to get it together.
Straighten up and fly right.
YOU are in charge of you.
Try harder.

All phrases I have used within the last few days. None of those are horrible in and of themselves...but it does give me pause to consider whether my belief about trusting in God, relying on Him for fruit of the Spirit, praying for help with daily temptations and struggles are being modeled and/or taught to my children.

So, tonight during our nightly devotional time I decided to talk specifically about grace. I used an analogy of the best behaved child they could think of...someone who they never heard get in trouble or saw do anything wrong. Then I asked them to think about someone who got in trouble all the time.
"What if when the teacher filled out the report card for child B she forgot about all his mistakes, all she could think about was child A? The wild kid still got hurt from his antics or had time outs as consequences, but what if she gave the wild kid the same treats and rewards that the really good kid got and chose to give the bad kid credit for the good kid's obedience?"

K looked at me with a twisted face and said, "That doesn't make any sense!"

"You're right," I grinned. "It doesn't make any sense...that's what makes it so awesome."

I love when God shows up in my playroom!


Carlin said...

sorry to hear about the ticket. On another note, hearing about the blueberries made me want to share this delicious sounding recipe I found the other day!

Lora Lynn @ Vitafamiliae said...

Can't wait to hear what you think when you've read the whole thing. :-)

Robby said...

The best thing we could tell to our children is how Great and good our God...All His Grace is sufficient that He save us... excellent post!