Yesterday I had had it. Jelly Bean had walked around the playroom with the most whiny, annoying cry. She wouldn't stop. Even the brief moment of silence while she munched on a graham cracker would be quickly interrupted by shriek of disapproval as she walked around the room making sure that I knew that she was not happy.
When Jelly Bean ain't happy, ain't nobody happy.
She wanted a frog. No, she wanted a turtle. No, she wanted every single toy that Peanut got her hands on. At one point, I begged Peanut to give Jelly Bean the toy in her hand to be nice. Not because it was fair or that Jelly Bean deserved it, but I just wanted her to STOP CRYING. Peanut, so happy to see me not freak out, handed over the frog which in today's market is worth like a whole box of graham crackers. I was taken back by Peanut's loving moment of sharing and thought, "Wow, we are doing something right here!"
Then I look at Jelly Bean. She lets me know that I haven't been Mommy of the Year or anything. Apparently something is going on and I am missing the boat. Regardless of what her problem was, it didn't matter. I got frustrated and yelled at her.
"Quit your whining or you will go to bed!"
Yelling at a baby does not make them stop crying. It makes it much worse. I know this. Yet I still yelled at her? Why would I think that being mad at someone who is obviously upset and can't communicate to me their problems would somehow turn them around? I felt so bad after I yelled at her.
Last night after the girls and twindada were long off to bed, I sat on the couch watching TV and thinking about our day. And somehow I was reminded about something I had said a long time ago before my girls were ever born.
When we found out we were having twins, I knew they were truly not mine. Sure, I was carrying them and biologically they were even mine and twindada's, but really I am merely their steward. I am a careprovider for them as they grow and enter this world. Just as I belong to God, so do they. So, for me to say they are mine is not entirely correct. They are children of God and I am just the lucky person who gets to claim to have brought them into the world. I am the lucky person who gets to watch them grow up and see them accomplish more in their life than I could ever have dreamt of doing myself.
I am the responsible person who is looked at to make sure they know that Jesus Christ died for them and is not only their Savior, but also their Lord. That is my responsibility and my joy, but I don't get to claim their existence. God brought them to me just as anyone would hand over their child and said, "Take good care of them. I love them with all my heart. Love them as I would and treasure them as they are worth more than anything in this entire world."
Yesterday I yelled at one of my girls. I mean, God's girls. Sure, there will be times that raising my voice is going to happen, but I have to keep this perspective in mind. There will be times when it may be a moment when it is absolutely warranted like if they are unsafe or making someone else unsafe.
So I pray that next time we have one of these days, I can remember who's kids I am talking to. I pray that I can be given more patience to scoop them up and tell them, "I love you. I treasure you. I will take good care of you." Because that is what a good steward does, after all.