“STOP KICKING YOUR SISTER!!!!”
Our drive home from camp was disappointing. I was sure they were all going to sleep after an exhausting week. Once the two younger ones fell asleep, Caleb was not cooperative with letting them rest.
Amayah was woken up way too early, and the fighting began much too far from home for my liking.
By the millionth time telling them to keep their hands to themselves, I started listing off what they would lose if they didn’t listen.
Caleb was distraught.
“My brain is telling me to mean to my sister, but God is telling me to be nice to her. I don’t know which one to do.”
Andrew and I looked at each other.
“Romans 7.” my husband says smiling.
“I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. I love God’s law with all my heart. But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 7:21-25a
Oh my son, do I understand this struggle. The two choices, doing good and evil, and the battle to choose what is right.
Hearing Caleb say this in such a simplistic way increased my compassion for him.
He is trying.
It isn’t easy for our kids to choose right. They are in a battle too.
In that moment, I recognized that part of my job is to help my kids understand that they will continue to to struggle with the power sin, but that there is one person, Jesus Christ who has the power to free them.
I pray my kids grow up knowing that “though our sins are like scarlet, He will make them white as snow”, and always feel they can crawl back to Jesus regardless of what they have done.
May we listen to the gentle nudge of the Holy Spirit telling us what is His good, pleasing and perfect will, and be an example to our little people that they can choose to follow God’s voice too.
Best friends most of the time, enemies only some of the time.