We’ve been “snowed in” this weekend. Sleeting rain gave way to tiny Dip-n-Dots-like snow balls and then transformed into perfectly fluffy snowflakes. I’m not sure how many inches Norman accumulated, but it’s beautiful, freezing cold, and a welcome change of scenery.
Finn’s in that “testing” stage. We ask him not to do something, he’ll look at us slyly, do precisely what we asked him not to do, then watch for our reaction. We are actually beginning to parent him. In particular, we’re learning not to touch hot things. Like the crockpot of steaming apple butter. Don’t touch that, Finn! He touches it. Bottom lip protrudes. Tears fall.
I love our wood burning fireplace. It’s one of the best features of our home. But it’s awfully tempting for Finn. Don’t touch the fire, Finn. It’s hot, hot, hot! He slides himself up to the brick, looks back at us and tries to continue climbing toward the flames. We grab him and remove him from the temptation. Several attempts follow.
This morning, Finn decided to obey. Joey asked him not to go toward the fire, and he turned around. Yay! Good boy, Finn! You obeyed! He loves the praise, so he returns to the fire to attempt the trespass a second time, hoping for another celebration when he turns around.
Joey laughs and scoops him up, saying, “You only get praised when you do what I ask, Finn. Not if you go back and try again.”
Parenting a child obviously parallels our relationship with the Heavenly Father. His grace is inexhaustible, unlike Joey’s and mine, but I think the Lord delights when we obey Him the first time He asks. Not when we crawl back to our sin over and over again like a toddler. At some point, He must question whether or not we really desire to obey Him at all. I’ve got to get a handle on those habitual sins that reveal my immaturity.