It seems that my life is in a constant state of flux lately. My motto: be flexible or die.
I alternate between excitement that it I have the organizational skills to keep my house well and children occupied, and disappointment that I am suppposed to "take it easy" because of continued bleeding in the pregnancy. A verse comes to mind... "Godliness with contentment is great gain". Is that You Lord?
I guess it never occurred to me that being driven to keep everyone on task could be robbing my contentment; though my dear husband will tell you that it has occurred to him:-) So, when my 4-year-old has received consistent smiles and hugs combined with proper chastisement at times and continues to give me angry looks, I know something is not right.
A few days ago I focused with my girls on sweetness. I talked to them often of the way Jesus wants us to behave. Of the sweetness found in His daughters. As the day progressed, it became obvious that their lack of sweetness was rooted in something else.
That night I asked my husband if I was sweet. As I suspected, that wasn't the first word to come to mind. He said I was "practical". For me, the word "brusk" somehow leapt out of his appraisal and stuck there in my mind. I looked it up in the dictionary.
Brusk: Abrupt and curt in manner or speech; discourteously blunt.
I have heard it said that the rod makes a child sweet. That you should not cease a period of chastisement until you have reached the child's heart and sweetness is the result. This has been on my heart a lot lately. But I have come to the conclusion that there is a lot more to it. I must become what I want my daughters to be. If I am lacking in a certain area, then expecting a child to become that is like expecting them to look in the mirror and see something that isn't there.
Just like it is preposterous for a man to look at his face in the mirror and immediately forget what he looks like, as James states in regard to disobeying the Word, it is just as strange (without the fulness of the Holy Spirit bearing fruit) to see a child acting in a way that his parents have not emulated for him.
An online dictionary defines sweetness as having a pleasing disposition; lovable.
I believe that sweetness is the result of the Spirit of God bearing fruit in our lives. I thought I was sweet because I was living on the memory of a bountiful harvest of fruit in my life a while back. Now I realize that the sweetness I crave is rooted in my own fruit (or lack thereof). I must meekly accept the ingrafted Word, and then await the sweet results. My children will then know true sweetness, directly from the source Himself.
22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 23Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. 24And they that are Christ???s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. 25If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. 26Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.