Friday, September 11, 2009

A Reminder to Self

"Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up." Galatians 6:9

You know what......being a homeschooling mama can be hard!!! You don't get to call out sick, have a lunch or coffee break or leave the job behind at 4 pm. Attitudes can pop-up at any time (and I am not just talking about the kids here) and you have to be really good at multi-tasking.

A mentor I look up to told me that while she was homeschooling she had this verse on her fridge as a reminder to herself. I have been look at this scripture alot lately. Trying to remind myself to press on.

I have had one child in particular who drives me to my knees. The whole summer has been a tug-o-war with them in regards to 2 areas of sin----lying and not doing chores. Frustrating to say the least!!! We can have 3 great days followed by 4 horrible days. I have shed more tears than I wished to over this matter. In my mind, I just don't get it. How hard is it to just tell the truth!!

But then I a quiet reminder comes to me about my own sin. What is my reaction to this child? I would love to say that I have a sweet tender voice and heart while correcting but that just doesn't happen. I take this child's disobedience VERY personally and get angry. I let it set the tone for the whole house. Talk about not being fair to the other children, my husband, myself and the original child who was disobedient.

I am working on it. First off---I have been praying about this area in particular for this child and myself (their lying and my reaction). Next, I have been having this child write out a scripture many-many times (Proverbs 12:22) and also have them wear an index card with the scripture pinned to their shirt as a reminder (an idea from a friend).

In regards to chores---I have noticed over the last 3 weeks this child has been saying "I don't like to_______ (fill in the blank---clean their room, pick up toys, do their chores, basically anything we have been asking them to do) ALOT! A friend of mine told me how she went through a similar problem with her 2 older children when they were little. Her first word of advice----speak only ONCE! She said if she told them to clean their room in X amount of time and they didn't, she went in with a garbage bag and cleaned it for them. The kids did have an opportunity to eventually earn the toys back---one at a time.

After getting VERY frustrated on Tuesday and hearing at 3 different times how this child does not like to ______ I decided to take action. The garbage bags came out and their room was packed up. Tears were shed as this child saw that I was serious. I used this as an opportunity to talk (yes, I talked very calmly) about how God entrusts us with a little and when we show we can handle it He gives us more.

This gave us both a great life lesson. This child learned there are consequences for not being obedient and for not being content with what they have been given. It gave me the chance to correct this child with a calm voice and a loving heart.

Wednesday and Thursday were great days with this child. However, today they got up and decided NOT to do their chores. I am happy to say that I stayed calm, I didn't take it personally (had to remind myself on this one) and gave the child their consequence nice and calmly. This child came to me on their own and has since apologized. I accepted and had them go and do their chore (instead of having them wait until Chris got home). They will now have 3 extra jobs to do (since there was 3 jobs they decided not to do) while the other children enjoy some play time. After they get their jobs done I will let it go and let them continue on with the day (this is a new one for me).

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