The worst parenting moment.
You hear your voice lecturing your child.
And you realize you are a total hypocrite.
So, last night I talked at them and talked at them, respect-this, obey-that, gratitude-if-you-please... Until I said the words, "you guys are so quick to forget what we've done for you."
The words stopped mid-air, flipped around, and cut me through the middle.
At the moment I was talking about the time I'd spent earlier cutting holes in boxes to transform all of their stuffed animals into box-trolls. I was thinking, "I did that for you, can't you just obey when I ask you to brush your teeth?" Then I remembered that I forgot.
The kids had done extra chores around the house to help me to have the time to do that with them.
Actually, the kids had been super obedient and helpful all day.
At the root of my forgetfulness about their contributions is an even greater problem. I am starting to forget the source of my blessings. I am starting to forget that my blessings are blessings. My kids have moments of forgetfulness and entitlement, to be sure. Are they the apples? Am I the tree?
After that horrible outburst of unchanneled discipline, Matthew and I turned to the scriptures and were able to regain the Spirit. We prayed as a family and read these words...
"There is a law, irrevocably decreed in heaven before the foundations of this world, upon which all blessings are predicated— And when we obtain any blessing from God, it is by obedience to that law upon which it is predicated" (Doc and Cov 130:20-21).
"Behold, I say unto you, wickedness never was happiness" (Alma 41:3)
"Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work; But the seventh day, the sabbath of the Lord thy God, thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy man-servant, nor thy maid-servant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates; For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and the sea, and all that in them is; wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it. Honor thy father and thy mother, that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee" (Mosiah 13:16-20)
Those scriptures may seem like they had nothing to do with the problems we are facing... but when we turn to the scriptures, Heavenly Father can dig past the surface of the problems we are facing and convey to us the core interventions we should apply.
At the same time, the scriptures can bring the proper spirit so that God can speak to our hearts and give us guidance, just for us.
"Write things down, Megan. You are quickly forgetting what I have done for you. If you stop being thankful for your children, they don't really belong to you."
Oh, my heart.
As painful as it is, I am grateful for the correction of the Lord that pulls me out of that selfish place.