Monday, February 18, 2013

Progress & Poundage

To say that I have been working overtime with my children on their attitudes recently would be an understatement. Insisting on first time obedience with a cheerful heart is tough work, isn't it, Mommies? But it is good and it is right. And it is being done in my home now.

Early last week I expected my children to grumble and complain, and sadly, ignore me for the first few times I instructed them to clean up their mess. After a much need pep talk with a dear sister, I began implementing the "Mommy says it and it gets done right away with a smile" rule.

By the end of last week, I noticed a change happening. Two or three times I received  a "But I don't want to", which was consistently and lovingly corrected. But usually when I said, "Okay, let's pick up our things now.", there was at first a tiny moment of hesitation (and decision making going on) and then "Okay, Mother! I won't complain!".  (Now, most times, there is not the moment of hesitation, but instant obedience!)

Oh! How sweet that is to hear and see! And even sweeter...each time they practiced this, their cleaning became more thorough! Things got put away more neatly, and more care was taken to ensure that each toy was put away in it's appropriate bin. I really didn't think we would be reaping such wonderful rewards so soon. How faithful God is to us when we, by His grace, begin to obey to His Word!

This evening as I was finishing up the dinner preparations, I announced that it was time to pick up and set the table. I heard, "Yes, Mother!" right away, followed by the happiest sounds of a brother and sister working together to complete a task. Being busy in the kitchen, and alone (Josh is at school tonight), I didn't "inspect" the room like I usually do. After they bathed and went to their rooms to get dressed for bed, I went into the playroom to close the blinds and make sure all was locked up. The room sparkled as I entered. "Wow!", I breathed. And in my joy, remembering how sweetly they had worked together to accomplish this job, I decided they would have a treat tonight.

I put on my stern Mommy voice and called, "James. JoyAnna. When you are dressed, please come to the playroom. I have something I would like to talk to you about." They came and stood in front of me with their little "Uh-Oh" faces on. "Look around this room...(dramatic pause)...I think you two are...professional cleaners!! This room looks amazing! What a great job you did! And with such happy hearts! 2 scoops of ice cream for everyone!"

I served their ice cream in sugar cones, and then served myself. Naturally, I gave myself a little more. James keenly observed my larger helping and commented, "You get to have more scoops."
"Yes," I answered with a wink, "I get an 'adult cone'."

Josh called at 7:50, as he usually does when he is at school, to ask the children about their day and say good night. James shared how he and JoyAnna got ice cream cones with 2 scoops of ice cream, and Mommy got "an adult cone". I heard Josh say, "Oooohhh....Mommy got an 'adult cone', huh?" I couldn't help but chuckle. And then James said, "Yeah...I think it was 60 pounds!"

"Ok! Say good night!" and I commandeered the phone from that little munchkin. Then I had some splainin' to do.


  1. Praise God for success! How blessed our homes are when we "train up" our children, and when they obey! Thank God He gives us grace and mercy (and patience) for each day. Praising God with you. Oh, how did the "splainin" go? ;)

  2. Thank you so much for your encouragement!! Yes, I am praising Him for his patience with me every day and for the perfect example He sets for us as our Father. Even if we have not had godly parents, we have no excuse because as Psalm 27:10 says, "Though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me." and is 2 Corinthians 6:18, "'I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters', says the Lord Almighty."

    As far as the splainin' goes...

    James' memory verses for the week are Proverbs 10:19 "In the multitude of words sin is not lacking, but he who restrains his lips is wise." and Proverbs 17:27, "He who has knowledge spares his words: and a man of understanding is of a calm spirit."

    Mine is 1 Corinthians 10:31, "So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God."

    Although Josh would probably say I should be memorizing Proverbs 25:16. :)

  3. Oh, how wonderful! Praise God!
    I love the way you write. I am at school so I was holding back my laughter but when I read "60 pounds" I guffawed out loud! And your title is perfect. :)
    Love you,

  4. Thank you, Yesi. :) I love the word "guffaw"! Hope you didn't get in trouble in class!! Love you back. :)