By: Lauren C. Moye
“ Look at how great a love the Father has given us that we should be called God’s children. And we are!” 1 John 3:1 (HCSB)
My one-year-old daughter wins the heart of anybody she chooses. She’s an entertainer and notices almost everything around her. So if somebody looks at her, even from a distance, the act is on. She’s all wide smiles, fake sneezes, and high-fives. Because of this, I’ve gotten used to responding to compliments with, “She’s definitely a personality.”
People outside only see her best points. They don’t know the more frustrating things about her personality. She is equal parts sunshine and thunderstorms. Sometimes she has meltdowns over being set down, only to get even more upset when she’s picked back up to be soothed.
Just yesterday, I stepped out of the room for a minute to straighten up the kitchen after breakfast. I wasn’t aware that my husband had left an opened pack of sunflower seeds, the shells still on, out. A week ago, it would have been safe from her reach. As it was, when I came back into the room, she had dumped all the contents out in front of her. Since my child is prone to shoving an entire fistful of food into her mouth, I already knew what was coming. She did, too.
Muffled grunts came from her mouth as I walked towards her. She stood up and tried to run. I caught her and sat her on my lap. She wiggled away from me. This time, she was smarter about it. She waited until the last second to duck away from my arm. This time, instead of trying to go gently for her stomach to lift her into my lap, I caught her arm. More muffled wails emitted from her mouth. I pulled her back into my lap and held her securely with one arm. It took almost eight minutes before I successfully wrangled the last of the seeds from her mouth. The whole time, she fought me by twisting her head away, clamping her jaws shut, and blocking my progress with her tongue. She fought me with everything she had over shelled sunflower seeds. And the whole time she fought me, she screamed and sobbed like I was torturing her.
I think when we talk about being God’s children, we’re guilty of imagining the sweet children happily clustered around Jesus. The truth is, parenting is about more than the joyous moments. There’s tears, late nights followed by early mornings, and discipline. There’s rescuing your child from danger – both physical and spiritual – only to be thanked by tears, screams, and hurtful words.
1 John 3:1 tells us that we truly are God’s children. When we look at God’s love, we find He has the love of a parent. I don’t know about you, but I imagine that when God looks at me, He sometimes says, “Yep, that Lauren is definitely a personality.”