Do you ever hear yourself saying something, to your partner or your friends or your family, and get slapped in the face with the words coming right back at you? I cannot begin to tell you how often this happens with my two kids. It’s like EVERYTHING I say to them is a direct reminder from Jesus of stuff I’ve ignored Him saying to me. This happens all day long. Seriously. I started keeping track of these quips and warnings, to test my theory, and got slapped in the face yet again with my hypocrisy and deep, deep need for the restoration of the gospel in my life. And also with how quickly one becomes their own parents, am I right? Not only do I say things like “Be good to your brother, your siblings are the only friends who stay forever” (direct quote from the wise Robin Frazier, GENIUS MOTHER OF MINE) but then the other day I dressed Clara in a floral jumper and ruffled socks before spritzing her curls with a generous dose of hairspray and suddenly it was 1992 and my mom was sewing me a Daisy Kingdom dress for Easter to go with my hair-sprayed bangs and jelly sandals and yes; yes. It is happening. I am becoming her.
Dear Mom, please accept my apologies for a lifetime of complaints. You’re incredible and I am undeserved. Love, Jess
9 Things I Say to My Kids That Make God Laugh Real, Real Good.
1. True obedience is fast, not on your own terms.
So stop walking backwards on tiptoes and then running back to the front door when I tell you to come get buckled into your car seat.
2. I know you can hear me. I’m being pretty clear.
You are two feet away. I know you heard me ask you to turn down the volume on that horrible microphone your aunt gave you.
3. I already know what happened, so please tell me the truth and save yourself some heartache.
For real, I actually saw you slide that drawer open and slip out a pack of gum. And I can currently see you chewing it.
4. I’m telling you “no” because I love you and want to keep you safe, not because I hate all fun and don’t care about what you want.
Sammy, I kid you not, those outlets are charged up and just waiting to fry that faux hawk off your head. BACK UP WITH THAT PLAY SCREWDRIVER.
5. You just have to trust me on this. There’s no way to explain in a way you would understand.
We just CAN’T get those 50 foot lit-up reindeer put back on the grass of that major throughway. We really truly cannot. Please stop asking.
6. Your feelings are valid but they are not the whole story.
I love you and I am sorry you are sad. But YOU are the one who threw that cup at HIM, you know what I mean?
7. You guys need to treat each other with kindness, no matter how you feel about the situation.
You can be angry; but don’t be mean. It was just a pretzel.
8. I know you feel omniscient, but spoiler alert! You are a child.
And at this point you don’t know much, pal.
9. I wish you could even dream how much I love you; you would never doubt your worth or your place in this world.
It’s beyond the galaxies and in every drop of my blood, dear ones. It’s a swirling vortex of love that I have bathed you in since you grew in my belly. I love you, so much! No matter what, always and forever.
Is there anything quite like parenting to reveal every weakness and ugly attribute you ever thought you could hide? Or maybe that’s just me. It could definitely just be me.
But yeah, I see it.
I see you, God. I hear it.
I GET IT.
Thank you. And oh so humbly,
I love you too.