Do you see that sweet little face? Adorable, isn't he? This is Elijah. He is 22 months old. In this picture he is showing off the make-up he got into that day. While he is adorable and I don't mind showing him off, there is more to this post then how cute he is.
You see he has an itsy-bitsy weakness. Well, it is not so small, it is huge and has caused a great deal of stress in our household. You see, he screams. He screams at and about just about everything! Now some of it is not his fault. He does have several other siblings poking and prodding him all his waking hours. That, and he has a sin nature like the rest of us.
This screaming has been so hard on us, especially because no form of training or discipline seems to work. We have been praying for wisdom for months. We have been praying that he would just stop SCREAMING, to no avail. It makes me laugh how God will not let some 'method' work sometimes, well most times.;-) When we put our hope in what some book says or some expert's "three easy steps to get your child to stop screaming" He is bound to let it fail over and over. You would think we would know this by now.**
Today, as I was crying out to God continually on this matter, I felt He spoke something to my heart that gave me fresh perspective. I have often thought that if we ever were given a 'special needs' child, by His grace, I would have to stop everything and give that child my all. I would have to learn to love that child however they needed to be loved. (I know this is easy to say when you don't have a special needs child, and I do not mean to minimize how hard it must be)
The Lord showed me that my little Elijah has special needs right now. Yes, there is a place for discipline and training, but he needs some special kind of love right now. If he was a true 'special needs' child it would be so inappropriate for me to get frustrated with him and to expect so much from him. What makes it okay right now?
Can I give him my all right now? Can I rely on God to give the grace to help me meet his needs right now? Can I stop relying on man's methods and look to Jesus each step and with each situation?
I say often that he is so lucky he is so darn cute! He is so precious and has the cutest personality. He is so smart for his age. I repent of my foolishness for relying on 'methods' and for being so impatient and 'un-loving' towards this creature!
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.
As I read these verses, it makes me cry, I am sad for the lack of love I have extended towards this little man.
Thank You, Lord for Your mercy and forgiveness. Thank You that Your love is shed abroad in my heart. Enable me to LOVE with your love.
**I would like to add that I am absolutely not opposed to parenting books and the like. I have and recommend quite a few. What I am referring to is putting our hopes in a method rather than on God. While these types of books have great 'practical' advice, they are not the end all. Our hope must be in God and His word alone. Capiche?