When I was reading Streams in the Desert a few days ago it was titled with this verse:
"He answered nothing." (Mark 15:3)
It was speaking of Jesus, who "by one look of Divine power and fiery rebuke" could have laid down the men who were maligning Him prostrate at his feet. "But Jesus let them say and do their worst, and He stood in THE POWER OF STILLNESS- God's holy silent Lamb"
What an amazing thought! Stillness to let God work for us and "power to hold our peace"! I don't have someone in my life who is causing such turmoil, but boy to I have moments when I want to to unleash at my children. In my own frustration, I am ready to scream because I am TIRED of hearing them bicker! When I read this devotional, I know God was leading me to consider my own reaction and how others will follow. My children will watch and follow.
I recalled a few days prior how God DOES want me to respond and teach my children. I was reading Proverbs 3:27-29. (Praise the Lord! His word does NOT return void!) My oldest two were bickering over book/toy in the car and getting very nasty with each other. I felt like pulling out my hair because I didn't know how to solve it for them. I was ready to yell and threaten, "If you two don't be quiet, when we get home you both will be disciplined and in trouble!!! Be quiet NOW!" (Which is how I react alot!)
But.... that still small voice reminded me of what I read that morning...
"Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due,
When it is in the power of your hand to do so.
Do not say to your neighbor, 'Go, and come back,
And tomorrow I will give it,'
When you have it with you.
Do not devise evil against your neighbor,
For he dwells by you for safety's sake.
So... instead of reacting, I said (in a good authority-I-know-what-I-am-taking-about-voice) :)
"When we get home you both are going to read out loud a Proverb and talk about this!" Of course, my daughter started crying even more saying "I don't like to read out loud!!"
Sean has spoken many times with the kids in church that our "neighbor" is everyone around us. Even our siblings in this case. I was able to explain the scripture to them and ENCOURAGE them to be an example with each other. Giving unselfishly "not withholding good" is such an example in moments of strife! They can grow in Christ and respond rightly. JUST like I can!!! Explained too, how important reading the bible is.. otherwise Mommy would have not been able to share Gods word.
I have more than once since that day came back to this Proverb. Now that I have written a blog about it, it will be ingrained in my head too. I am realizing more TEACHING needs to take place with my children (they are growing so fast!!)
.. Lord please give me YOUR WORDS to now how to answer in all moments.
my not so little ones...
Bush Park March 2010
Blessings and Love!!