Tuesday, May 28, 2013

When Children Don't Listen

I dropped my husband off at the airport this morning. He is taking a business trip to China over the next twelve days.
After the children came home from school, they complained, whined and ignored every thing I tried to tell them.

I hate yelling at my children, and when my husband is gone, I am stressed out more than usual.
That is no excuse, but the lack of respect my children have been showing really got under my skin today.

I have been asking my daughter to clean her pet mouse's cage for two months. Yes, two months, and she has continuously said, "Tomorrow," or, "I need help." She is ten years old, and perfectly capable of cleaning out her pet's cage.

Today I threatened to get rid of her beloved pet Cuddles. My exact words were, "Either the cage gets cleaned out NOW, or Cuddles will no longer be here for you to ignore."

She cried, and whined, and went to hide in her room. So, I went right into her room, and said that if she was going to act irresponsibly, she would no longer have the responsibility of caring for a pet. I would get rid of Cuddles, if she did not start to clean out the cage now.

She cried as she cleaned it, but it got done.

When she asked me to help her put the cage back together, I refused at first, because my daughter cried, claiming she could not do it herself.

At what point do I push my children to do things for themselves?

I am a teacher, and have always loved to teach people to do things.
I have taught my daughter how to clean the pet cage. I have taught my children manners, and how to be polite.
They still don't listen to me, or follow directions.

I pray that God will guide me in teaching them the proper interaction with their parents, and how to obey the directions they are given.

There is a very fine line between directions and consequences for not following expectations, and I am striving to make it clearer for my little ones.

I pray that my diligence in this area is working, and I have evidence that it may be.
My sweet little daughter said to me tonight, "Mommy, why are you so nice to us when we're so mean to you?"

This was so nice to hear after I had yelled at them for not listening or following directions!!

I was very relieved that God sent my sweet daughter the message I needed to hear.
Hopefully He will help me to continue to see the sweetness in my children, and that He grants me patience, grace, and gentility to deal with the issues that may arise during their daddy's business trip.

"Each of you must show great respect for your mother and father, and you must always observe my Sabbath days of rest. I am the Lord your God." Leviticus 19:3 (NLT)

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law." Galatians 5:22-23

"May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light." Colossians 1:11-12

"Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive." Colossians 3:12-13

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