Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Angry (08/02/07)
TITLE: Glad Versus Grateful
By Glorey Wooldridge
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Before the end of our session, she stomped off to her room in frustration and anger. She made it clear she had enough and I was left with the task of speaking to her regarding her less than Godly attitude. I gave her a few moments to cool down and went to her room and talked to her about the necessity of respect and of doing a job properly until it was completed to the best of her ability– even if it was one she did not particularly like. We finished practising the spelling list and off she went to bed. I forgot about the matter for the time being.
On the day of the test, Alyssa came home and with much enthusiasm told me she made 100% on her test. “Ah ha!” I thought “This will be a way of validating what we talked about earlier in the week and the point will be well made..” As she sat down at the table for a snack, I gently asked her, “Now, aren't you glad we worked together until you had the list memorized?”
“Glad? Oh, no, I'm not glad.” She said. She lowered her voice, looked at me with glistening eyes and spoke again. “But I am grateful.” She grabbed her cookie, smiled, and bounded out of the room with the energy of a fourth grader done of school for the day.
Ouch. A moment of profound truth. Out of the mouth of my daughter poured forth a nugget of truth I also needed to hear. A valuable lesson was brought to my attention because I was listening not only with my ears; but also with my spirit and my heart.
I thought about the times I have been corrected, either by well meaning friends, by family members or by God. What is my attitude like? I pondered. How many times have I stomped off in anger (maybe only in my thoughts) only to realize after calming down the other person or the Holy Spirit was very correct? Conviction set in and I asked for God's forgiveness and help in this area.
When I react in anger, I need to repent without conditions. This means I do not have the liberty to use the “but” word. “I am sorry, but...” negates the apology. It leads to justification and I knew deep within I needed to grow to a new level of maturity in this area.
Have I been corrected before? Yes. Will I be corrected again? A given. Will I be glad? Like my daughter, probably not. Yet the real question begging to be asked is, will I be grateful?
Although correction is sometimes painful, I know it is right and good, and yes, I will be grateful. Even if it is a choice and a struggle of the flesh, I will determine to make this a standard in my life. With God's help, all things are possible. God is like a loving parent. A loving parent guides, corrects and shows the child the right way to go. Should we expect any less?
Hebrews 12:6a For whom the LORD loves He chastens.
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