Kids & Parenting
no, No, NO
by Rebekah Brazell
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I feel as if my fingers cannot type this fast enough! My excitement is at level 10! You know when you have those light-bulb moments and you think…. “Why did it take me so very long to get this?!?” Well, I had one today in the pew at church.
Let’s start from the beginning. To say I love my daughter, is truly an understatement….I adore her! I love to be around her and truly like who she is becoming. She has a laugh that is contagious, a passion and drive that is already evident, and a heart that will take her far! She also has deep brown eyes, light red hair, and a smile that warms…okay melts….my heart! My favorite gal also has traits that are not so desirable. For example, she has recently found a love for the word “No”. I wish you could hear it, because that is truly what makes it so undesirable to this mommy. It is a matter-of-fact, to the point, short-and-sweet “No” and if you don’t say anything back to her, she will continue with the sugar-coated “No….No….No No.” , until you surrender. I have tried everything to wean her from this new word, but she absolutely loves the independence and opinion that is holds. I could go on with the tactics I have tried, but I promise that is not the point…..I’ll go on.
So last night, we had another 'no-battle', as I call them. This time it was over the books to read for bedtime. She would bring me a book, sit in my lap and as soon as I began to read it, she would say “No…no.” and go try out another one. Finally, mommy said we are going to read these three books and then go to bed. I do have to admit, she doesn’t argue when you make a statement like that, so I guess it could be worse….it could always be worse, right?!
This has become a topic (the main topic) of my prayers for her. It has also become a topic in each of my conversations with my husband. I have read articles and asked friends/family for advice. As you can tell, it’s wearing on me….
Now, lets jump to this morning as I’m standing in church during praise and worship time. We are singing one of my favorite songs. The lyrics are “I’m trading my sorrows, I’m trading my shame. I’m laying them down for the joy of the Lord……We’re singing Yes Lord, Yes Lord, Yes Yes Lord, Yes Lord, Yes Lord, Yes Yes Lord, Yes Lord, Yes Lord, Yes Yes Lord, Amen!” We repeat this chorus a few times, and before I know it I am laughing hysterically inside and it’s started to seep it’s way outside as I smile and laugh while singing the one word I have been desiring to hear from my little lady’s mouth: “Yes”.
In that very moment, the Holy Spirit convicted me. How many times has my Father patiently listened to me repeat “No…no…no.” to Him? I said it in high school as he called me to be a teacher, I said it in college as he called me to be a missionary, I said it when he called me to be a military wife, I said it as my grandMa fought cancer, I seriously probably say it everyday of my life to Him. Yet, I have never felt punished or guilty for doing it. Today, I realized that being a parent isn’t about having the perfect child, it’s about loving them like Jesus loves us; being His reflection into their lives even when I don’t want to. It’s about saying “Yes” to Jesus everyday, so that one day they too might say “Yes” to following and seeking after our Father in Heaven.
Today I reflect on my life in the present, and ask myself, “What are you saying “No” to God about?”
And friends, what are you saying "no" to God about today? What is He putting on your heart and in your life that you need to accept and put action behind?
I pray these words give you encouragement and God glory.
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