Here we are learning a very important lesson… and by we I mean mainly me. I have come to the realization recently that I make my three year old apologize for everything. From knocking the remote off the couch with a car (on purpose), to hitting me in the face, to telling me no when I have told him not to say that to me again, you get the picture. Today, I realized it must really mess with his little mind that I don’t ever apologize when I mess up. I guess I think I get away with it because I’m “in charge”, but that just shouldn’t be the case.
My sweet children have been in the room when I talk disrespectfully to my husband. They have heard me say words that I teach them not to say. Jackson has even said, “Mommy, we don’t say that.” and all I say is “you’re right” not ”I’m sorry baby. Mommy messed up”. So… Why is it so hard to apologize and own our mistakes?
I have told several people that during the 5th year of marriage something clicked with me — I don’t know why it took me 4 ½ years to learn how to say, “You’re right. I’m wrong. I’m sorry”, but it did. In a matter of days, after continually admitting when I was wrong and apologizing, it completely changed my marriage for the better.
So, if that helped grow and strengthen my relationship with my husband, then I shouldn’t wait 4 ½ years to apply this lesson with my children. They deserve more from me. As they grow I want them to be able to realize their mistakes and own them and apologize when they do wrong to others or to God. This brings up the most important thing of all…
Two little sets of eyes need to continually see me go to the Lord for forgiveness. They need to know that what ultimately matters is that we are in constant communication with our Heavenly Father. And I cannot be in constant communication with Him if I am trying to hide my wrongs (which He already knows anyway). I love how forgiveness is described in this scripture and in The Message translation.
If you, God, kept records on wrongdoings,
who would stand a chance?
As it turns out, forgiveness is your habit,
and that’s why you’re worshiped.
“Forgiveness is your habit.” As God has a habit of forgiving our sins then I should have a habit of asking for forgiveness. I want my children to be raised in a home where our lives point back to the Lord. That will not be possible unless we are continually asking for forgiveness and teaching this most valuable thing to our children. These little eyes learn from watching us and listening to our every word.
So, with all of this being said, Lord please forgive me for failing my children. I have not shown them your forgiveness in the way that I should. Please give me the courage to admit to them when I am wrong and help me get down on my knees and look right into their small, innocent eyes and say “I am sorry. Do you forgive me?” Amen.