How many times will she try to touch that? How many spanks will it take to teach her not to?? I think as I grab our spanking tool and swat her bottom.
“Abigail,” I gently say as I look into her eyes then point to the lap top again, “You may not touch the computer. Mommy says ‘No’.”
She peers up at me with tear stained eyes. I give her a hug, tell her I love her, then she’s ready to bounce off to play with something else.
**12 and a half minutes later**
I’m washing dishes at the sink while Abby plays at my feet. She and I are listening to her toddler radio station on Pandora. The music suddenly stops. I turn around and Abby is thumbing her fingers on the touchpad of my lap top. She looks up at me, knowing what is coming next.
(Repeat first five sentences of this story)
**Three hours later**
**The next morning**
I try to be a patient mommy. Often I am. But when we designated the computer as a “no touch” item for Abigail, I had no idea what a temptation it would be for her. Occasionally, days pass before Abby decides to test this boundary again. At other times, she attempts to cross this line numerous times within a few hours without me noticing or stopping her.
Last week during one of these instances of multiple infractions, I started praying in my mind out of frustration. God, why is it so hard for her to just stop touching one thing? Why can’t she just leave it alone!
Then, as God so often does, He brought my own sin to my mind.
How many times have you, Monica, asked for forgiveness repeatedly for the same sin? How many times have I told you ‘No’ only to have you do exactly that? How many times have I chastened you, corrected you, welcomed you with open arms, then had to do it all over again a few minutes, a few hours, or a few days later?
Oh, God is so loving, so kind, so good! He has gives forgiveness as often as we need it (which for me is quite often!). Should I not show as much patience with my daughter when she needs that extra amount of love? Who am I to withhold consistent discipline and forgiveness when God pours out so much to me?
What about you? Who are you struggling to love, forgive, and be patient with today? A parent? In-law? Child? Co-worker? Friend? Remember what Christ has done for you, then pray that God will grant you the ability to share His goodness and His attitude with them from this point forward.