Affirming Words – Take Three
On the way to school in the mornings I try to pray with the girls. Usually it’s just me praying out loud, them listening attentively with their hands folded (right?), and then we do the Lord’s prayer together.
I try to hit the THANKFULS – for our family, for keeping us safe, for the weather, etc.; we ask for FORGIVNESS for our many faults (ex- “..when we don’t speak with kindness); and ask for GUIDANCE and to “be more like Jesus.” During this part I try to hit on one or more of the fruits of the spirit. Today I was listing them off..:
“Lord, and help us to treat others with kindness and compassion and gentleness..”
As I heard gentleness come off my lips, I paused. Gentleness? Had I been gentle this morning?
When washing Sophie’s hair?
When combing Sophie’s hair?
When I interrupted the girls’ arguing with “GO OUTSIDE AND GET INTO THE VAN RIGHT NOW!!!!”
Not only am I not very gentle physically, I am not very gentle emotionally with them. I am frequently harsh and frustrated. Quick to anger and short-tempered.
Maybe God is speaking to me. It was only yesterday on the drive that I started thinking of how negative most of my words are in the morning. Suddenly I recalled something from last year’s Hearts-at-Home – Affirming Words. What if I tried to say 3 affirming things to Sophie on the way to school? How would that change the both of us and the quality of our day?
After hitting the word “gentle” in my prayer – or rather, after it whacked me on the head – I tried to say some positive things to my daughter. It wasn’t hard. There really are a million good things I could say about her. Does she know that? Maybe I’ll try it more often.