Toddlers and Jesus have a LOT in common
Alright, I am here to admit something that has been tugging at my heart.
We are a Christian family. I owe so much to God, and I am the first to admit it.
When we first relocated to Raleigh from the beach, we attended church regularly. I worked with 3rd graders in the Sunday school, Tyler sat with his sisters family in the service, and Riley loved (read: cried the whole time) being in the nursery.
When Riley was about 10 months old, we started slacking. We would blame her teething on why we didn't attend that Sunday, or that the kids in the nursery were always sick which would in up making R sick. We had a busy year (wedding planning, moving 2 times, building a house, vacations, holidays)so we used these excuses to not attend church on Sunday.
Remember, I owe a lot to God. When we were living at the beach, God did at total 180 on my heart and I have full confidence in the fact that he was the reason and the timing behind me meeting Tyler. He was the guidance during a tough pregnancy, he showed me it was okay, he answered all of my prayers and calmed my anxiety. He has healed my mom time and time again (this is a story for another day.)
I owe my whole heart to him, so why have I been making up excuses to not show up and worship him?
Laziness. That's all I can come up with. Sunday is our only day to lounge around and do nothing together, so that first hour of the morning is more importantly shared over Netflix and a cup of Joe instead of praising and worshiping our father that has made this Netflix and coffee happen. (This is so wrong - I know.)
Yesterday, I raised my voice at R because she refused to lay down and take a nap. It was overcast outside..usually we play in the backyard or swing on the front porch to tire her out just a little before her morning nap, and I hadn't done that..I had answered a few emails for work, I had taken a few pictures of new inventory, and I left Riley to play independently. I told her she had to take a nap or she was going to time out. She laid down, pouting, and fell asleep.
I sat down and opened my daily devotional app (which, for the record...everyone needs one of these.) I opened it to a study on Forgiveness - I did this on purpose due to all of this hitting me hard and my guilt for not making church a priority was high.
"Her sins, which are many, are forgiven." Luke 7:47
I knew he had forgiven me, simple as that..and I knew what I needed to do to make things right. We need to stop making excuses and just show up.
My mom always told me to never hold a grudge, and I hear her repetitively in my head when something goes wrong and I feel angry with someone or something, "don't hold a grudge, karma will do its job. just pray for them." (My most recent frustration: I sent Tyler to the grocery store for a few things.)
Text to Tyler:
-chocolate (make mama happy)
-fruit (banana, blueberry, blackberry, + rasp.)
We talked before he left and I told him I reeeeally wanted chocolate. Well, he came home with pizza goldfish, vanilla wafers, and no chocolate. I held a grudge for a solid few hours. He said "vanilla wafers are better than chocolate!!" but the stubborn inside of me quickly became angry (or hangry?) all because of chocolate.
I wanted to be okay with it, but I was upset. I didn't get my way, and was being selfish..I could have easily forgiven him and moved on...but instead I was holding that grudge my mom always said to not hold onto.(Secretly, I was plotting next time he sent me to the grocery store for protein bars I was planning to come home with licorice.)
About an hour later, Riley woke up from her nap, she screamed "mama!" with excitement, and wrapped her arms around my neck and kissed me. She had totally forgiven me for pushing her to take that nap. For threatening punishment because I had not done an activity like normal to wear her out.
Kids and Jesus have this in common. They are so quick to forgive. They are so quick to accept apology and love deeply and whole heartedly. There are no grudges being held - it is so sincere and I admire it beyond compare.