how many times…

How many times is this puppy going to pee on the floor!?  He goes days now without accidents and then all of a sudden it’s as though he completely forgets that the potty is outside.  Lord help me.  Really though, help me Jesus.

Funny story (and most likely a complete overshare), when I get up in the middle of the night to let Chandler out, I usually also have to pee.  As everyone knows, even if you don’t have to pee laying down, you do have to pee once you stand up.  But being the good mom that I am, Chandler takes priority.  So while I’m standing outside with him, patiently waiting for him to do his business, I have to pee so bad that I practically fantasize about squatting right there on the lawn and peeing too.  Listen, I know I’m weird but this is my safe space.

On another note, my oldest son Charles has had his iPad taken away for all of infinity for what’s up to almost $130 in Robux charges for his dumb game!  I feel like I’ve been on the phone with apple for days.  The way they work is that not all their charges appear at the same time even though the purchases are made at the same time.  Odd, I know.  So every day, up comes a new charge and I have to spend a good deal of my morning rectifying the situation and it makes me mad all over again.  For those of you who might be thinking to yourself, “He’s just a 10 year old boy.  There’s no way he did it on purpose.” You are dead wrong!  He is a smart 10 and he knows the value of money.  He is so very much aware that he asks for iTunes gift cards for birthdays and holidays.  The kid knows.  After coming up with some cockamamie story about how the game must have “glitched out,” his father and I inspected the iPad to see if maybe I had accidentally taken off the password protection for purchases or something.  Needless to say, I did NOT.  Paul even tried making an in app purchase to make sure it required a password to complete.  It DID!  Once we went through these measures of testing, finally Charlie confessed.  He said he had learned the password without our knowledge and was making the purchases hoping that we wouldn’t notice.  That’s the funniest part I think.  We’re not flat broke, but we’re close enough ha!  We notice every dollar that goes in and out of our accounts.  Right down to the cents.  So how many times will these kiddos think they can be sneaky and not be found out!?  It just goes to show, we’re all born broken.

We’re smarter than our kids.  If Charlie was given the choice between eating this week or buying robux, something tells me, the kid would have chosen food.  $130 is the better portion of our weekly grocery bill.  $130 is enough money to pay both our gas and internet bills.  Between robux or internet, cooked food and dry clothes, I think he would have chosen the internet, cooked food and dry clothes.  But in the moment, he’s not thinking that.  He’s not thinking that he’s trading what’s ultimately better for what’s most satisfying only for a moment.  He’s just thinking about his immediate wants and desires.  How often we are the same.  God is infinitely smarter than we are.  What we think we need and what God knows we need are usually on two opposite ends of the spectrum.  As parents we are to guide and lead our children, to teach them what’s best and what’s better.  And as loving parents we allow our children to feel the full weight of the consequences of their actions.  To do anything less would be unloving.  And yet, we (or me) get angry with God when He won’t immediately do things our way.  Kids are never thrilled with discipline and neither are adults.  But it’s so necessary.

How unloving it would be of God to give us what we want, even when it means that it would result in us or someone we love, living eternally apart from Him.  He’s the greatest Father.  He’s better than even the best earthly father.  When God takes from us something good, it isn’t to cause us pain and suffering, it’s to give to us instead what is better.  It is always in Gods great mercy that He tells us “no” or “you’re done” or “it’s time to go.”  It is always the most loving thing He can do to allow us to suffer the consequences of our actions or even just to suffer period.  How else are we to learn what Grace is.  Many of us know the definition of Grace.  We preach it to friends and family and the unsaved, we even preach it to ourselves.  Many of us have a working knowledge of the “theory” of Grace, but far fewer of us have had the tangible experience of Grace.  It’s painful.  It hurts.  It requires some (a lot of) humbling.  But it’s the most beautiful thing.  Grace makes you grieve your sin.  Grace shows us why we need to depend completely on God.  It makes you feel the weight of your sin whilst simultaneously lifting it off of you.  Grace shows you Jesus face to face.  And when you know it, when you know Grace the way God intends, you have the unique ability to give it out.

We can give it out in so many way.  We can be gracious to strangers who cut us off in traffic.  (Put those birds away people!)  Grace gives us the ability to be compassionate on the leaders of ISIS; it gives us the ability to pray for their souls and deeply desire that the Holy Spirit does a work in their hearts.  (If you’re angered by that, the guy who wrote most of the New Testament is equivalent to a modern day terrorist.  There is no heart so hardened that God can not soften it.  Pray for your enemies.)  Lastly, (for this, but not actually lastly because there are an insane amount of ways to dole out Grace) we can give it to our spouses when they disappoint us and we can even parent by it.

Being a Holy Spirit filled, Jesus loving parent means that I get to show my kids the Grace and Mercy of a loving God by loving them through every imperfection and mistake and allowing them to suffer consequence.  I get to know that when they come out the other side of their 10, 7, 5 and 3 year old suffering, they’ll be one step closer to the people they’re supposed to be.  And hopefully they’ll be one step closer to their Father who loves them and desires eternity with them.  It’s necessary.  Correction and discipline are necessary for my kiddos and they’re necessary for me (you too).  I hate it when I’m in it, but I love it in the end.  And it’s important that my kids see my great and desperate need for Jesus so they will see their great and desperate need as well.  More importantly, I hope they realize, the desperation never ends.  There is no cap to the amount of times we’ll need Jesus.  It’s every time, all the time.  This side of Heaven I want to spend every single day desperate.  Desperate for more Jesus.  Thank God for Grace.

Perfection doesn’t exist in this home; we don’t even aspire to it.  We just have a lot of love and grace and merciful correction and desperation and sometimes the desire to pee out in the backyard next to the dog.

I’m out.  Running on Jesus and coffee y’all.

“For from His fullness we have all received Grace upon Grace.” John 1:16


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