So often I will read a book and find something I want to remember or think others would benefit from what I have read. I am reading "What the Scriptures Teach Us about Raising a Child" by S. Micheal Wilcox. I am not very far into it but I came across a section that really got me thinking.
He is talking about Mary the mother of Jesus. The part where Jesus as a young child wanders from his parents and is found teaching scholars in the temple. I am not a gospel scholar so I will just quote his understanding.
"When Jesus was found teaching in the temple at the age of twelve, Mary's mildly chiding question, his seemingly enigmatical reply, which she did not fully understand, gives added insight (see Luke 2:43-50). This was no power struggle by either of them, yet even at this early moment in his development, when the dawning realization of his life's mission was settling upon him "he went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject unto them: but his mother kept all these saying in her heart"(Luke 2:51)
"There will be in our lives moments when our children say or do things under the guiding influence of the Father, things which we do not understand. These will be moments to ponder, to keep in the heart, as Mary did at this time, as she had earlier after the visit of the shepherds (see Luke 2:19). In time, awareness will come as we gratefully realize forces are at work in the lives of our offspring to shape them and prepare them beyond the scope of our own efforts. We are not alone in our responsibility to create the foundations upon which they will build their lives. There is much comfort in that thought."
I thought this was a profound thought especially since my children are so young and fresh from our Heavenly Father they are less polluted by the world than I am. I am pretty sure that Heavenly Father uses that sweet pureness to teach me a thing or two or a million!
Last week Miranda decided she wanted to plan a meal so we let her. She scoured the cookbooks and came up with spaghetti and meatballs, a green salad (with the toppings), garlic bread and brownies from scratch. She found the ingredients and told me what she needed. Turns out neither of us knew this was an activity that helps her earn her Faith in God award. Woo-hoo! Tonight we decided was the night she would cook. The brownies took FOR-E-VER to make, but she did it and it surpassed any home made brownies that I have made. I realize I have a control issue (this isn't new). Not that I need to control everything but it is so much easier for me to do it myself especially when I am more knowledgeable or experienced. This means I am a lousy teacher, funny since I am a mother to six! Anyways, I lectured myself silently about 12 thousand times to let Miranda do it even if I can do it better, faster and more efficient (yes this is arrogant and lack humility, lesson learned...again!). She would ask for my help then tell me she could do it, or ask for my help then when I jumped in she would get in front of me. At one point I threw a minor temper tantrum and stormed away (knocking over the 10 pound bag of sugar!) because I didn't want to blow a gasket. (Ridiculous that I had such little patience huh?) So I went to my bed and kneeled down to plead with my Heavenly Father to have more patience and that I can control myself. I can't say that when I walked out to help her that I was 100% perfect but it helped. She did it and she did a great job. I am in awe that my eight year old little girl made brownies from scratch, something I didn't do until a few months ago! I have so much to learn from these amazing children that I have been so wonderfully blessed with. I am also amazed that I have 7 people in my house who can teach me lessons that my Heavenly Father feels I stand in need of, even if they aren't flattering, appealing or even what I feel I stand in need of. I realize this is opposite of what I quoted above, but I know that our Father in Heaven will never leave us alone especially if we are giving our best effort for all the right reasons.
Another thing that I learned from the example or thought from this book is that sometimes it is so important to just listen and "file it away." I pray to Heavenly Father but it is not too often that I kneel and listen and wait for guidance, answers or even affirmation that I am doing the right thing. I treat prayer like a check list. I kneel to pray before I go to bed, check! I read the scriptures, check! I brush my teeth, check! I so badly need to get in the habit of listening. There is probably lots of guidance and inspiration that I am missing out on for the simple reason of not listening. Like I mentioned here, I don't do well with silence.
Don't dismiss my children, because they are children, CHECK!
Be willing to learn from my children, CHECK!
Pray ALWAYS, CHECK!
LISTEN more often than I pray! CHECK!