WWJD in the face of a messy toddler meltdown?

I try not to talk too much about parenting on this blog, because that’s what my other one is for.

But… I’m a mom and I spend a lot of time with the littles. A lot. So of course they occupy much of my headspace. And of course my headspace it’s what ends up here on this paper space. Er, web space.

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how I parent in two areas: discipline and getting my baby to sleep. naturally those are the two issues that I’m most immersed in at hte moment – helping Judah’s basic needs to be met (feeding, sleeping, and cuddles), and helping to shape the foundation for our parenting philosophy and style in the area of disicpline (helloooo, little toddler!).

And since I’m a Christian, I’m asking myself this question a lot: how does God parent me? (Because that should shape how I parent my littles.)

To put it in today’s (cheesy, over-used) terms: Would Would Jesus Do when dealing with a tantrum? or a fussy baby? or being woken up at night? Or food landing anywhere but the little one’s mouth?

I try to imagine Jesus dealing with a toddler in teh midst of a meltdown over toppled blocks and wonder… would he sweep the kid off to a time out? Would he use stern words? would he give him a giant hug? Would he remove a priviledge? would he distract? Would he spank? (Oh, the controversy these responses stir up!!!)

So many questions.

Of course i don’t know all of hte answers. And I can only imagine what Jesus would actually do.

But I do have expereince of how God’s treated me as an “infant” Christian. He was always so gracious, so kind, so slow to anger. His rebuke never felt stern. I can never remember him barking orders. I don’t recall him demanding obedience or punishment. I don’t remember him even removing “privileges” so to speak.

I just remember him loving me. And trusting me. And giving me opportunity and responsibility and the chance to make a difference.

ANd as I grew to love him and know him back, my desire to obey and serve and be like him just naturally followed.

I grew to love what he loves and live by his value system.

Doesn’t mean he never corrected me along the way.

But when he did correct (and still when he corrects me now), he does so gently and with respect.

Often he even whispers, nudges, suggests a better way.

And his boundaries are clear and unchanging and set up for my own good. (And even bring freedom – what a concept.)

How does this translate into how I parent my littles? How does this translate into that moment – life in teh eye of a tantruM?

That’s where the rubber really hits the road.

These are my questions… These are my thoughts…

This is my parenting being shaped.

So. Much. To. Learn.

STOP.

 

Q for you: How does your faith shape your parenting?

 

Love,
A

p.s. Yes, I did go over time on this post. Like a whopping two minutes or something. Yikes, you’d think in two minutes I could have at least fixed up some of those typos! 😉

 

Click Clink Five | Five minutes a day, unedited

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About Adriel Booker

Writer, speaker, advocate, and non-prof worker. Happily married city-lover, mama, and emoji enthusiast in Sydney, Australia. Author of Grace Like Scarlett (Baker Books, 2018). View all posts by Adriel Booker

9 responses to “WWJD in the face of a messy toddler meltdown?

  • Gwen

    Loved this post – very thought provoking.

  • CJ

    We are nearing the need to figure out a plan of discipline, but I never thought to look at it this way. I’m so intent on not doing it the way my parents did I often fail to see how TO do it, as opposed to how NOT to do it. I need to focus on how He parents me and go from there. Thank you.

    • Adriel Booker

      i’m glad that helps. i think if we just focus on what not to do or doing the opposite to our parents, then we run the risk of becoming reactionary. i don’t want to just react to my kids/situations when they happen, i want to be the one to set the tone. 🙂 so yes, even though our kids are only two and under, i’m thinking of these things soooo much right now and trying to lay a good foundation to build on. so glad my little thoughts are helping to get the wheels spinning. we have a great Example to follow. 🙂

  • LeiShell

    Thank you, I needed this today. My heart has been shaken with an argument between my hubby and I and then just feeling completely inadequate as a wife and mom. I prayed that God would help me parent and be a better wife, so by modeling his love I can do that. Great reminder of how to handle life when it gets hard!

  • Rosilind Jukic

    I loved what you wrote here: “How does this translate into that moment” – sometimes we tend to categorize behavior (this behavior deserves THAT punishment)…but sometimes the reason behind the behavior can be more telling. Maybe the tantrum is motivated by disappointment or a sense of failure…and that needs a loving hug, not a time-out or harsh words that will only cause more disappointment and feelings of failure. 🙂 Thank you for posting this because it really got me to thinking!

  • Yolanda

    Oh boy. I’m not sure how much God shapes my parenting, as much as he first uses the kids and the challenges of parenting to beat down my pride to a pulp and remind me that I. desperately. need. Him. 🙂 Not only in the moments of frustration, but also in the moments when I am loving my kids so much that my heart aches for them to know God’s love. At those times, I am thankful that God draws me real close and tells me just how much more He loves and cares for them than I can ever possibly fathom.

    • Adriel Booker

      I love this: “but also in the moments when I am loving my kids so much that my heart aches for them to know God’s love.” You’re so right. It’s not just in the hard times, but also in those time when the heart bursts and overflows. So glad we have Him to show us how it’s done.

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