A Battle of Wills

"Stupid." Boo says with a sly grin as he runs past me to stay out of arms reach.

At a loss for 'worse' words (because he doesn't know any) he throws 'stupid' around with a true sense of defiance. It wasn't in response to anything or provoked in any way, he's just testing me.

The truth is, sometimes he gets the better of me. My hands are full, I'm busy with something else, I don't want to take time and energy away from Bug, and Boo kind of gets away with stuff like that.

But tonight, I had nothing better to do than engage in a battle of wills with my three year old. And while his energy level may surpass mine most of the time, when I set my mind to it, I still always have the capacity to "win" if I so choose.

So we did this dance for the better part of an hour. He, running past, alternately shouting and whispering his insult; I, correcting, catching, time-outing, "you deal with him Dad"ing, etc.

Finally, all other avenues of correction exhausted, I pulled out the trump card. I put him in my lap, wrapped my arms around his, crossed my leg over the top of his and held him close. It wasn't tight by any means. It didn't even require any true effort to keep him there. Like a well-executed wrestling hold, there was just no way for him to escape no matter how much wriggling, fighting and crying he put forth. As much as he craves this kind of attention many times throughout the day, when struck by the urge to run, there is nothing he hates more than to be confined, even in loving arms.

Finally, after two bouts with me and one with Daddy there was no fight left in him. He went and got some books for me to read and then said he was ready to go to sleep.

Such a lot of effort over something so ridiculous!

I wonder how often God has felt that way about me. He wants to help me see that my attitude is getting off track. I don't listen to his correction as I wander back and forth through my day spouting the very things I've been corrected for so many times. I'm not on my own in my defiance even though I feel so independent and detached from what I know to be right.

Finally, all other avenues exhausted, he wraps His arms around me, holds me close and reminds me yet again that he wants my best and I am choosing to wander from it.
As I stop wriggling and fighting for my own way I realize that I am snuggled and supported and loved. Exactly what He wanted for me from the start.



elaine @ peace for the journey said...

You are good to give Boo your time and attention and patience. My response would have been a bit different!

How thankful I am for a God who tenderly holds and corrects until I'm no longer concerned about my will be done and his, all the more! It sure beats the swift kick in the pants that I also, sometimes, receive because of my stubborn will. Either way, to come back around to his correction and direction is the stuff of Christian maturity...a growing faith rather than stagnancy.

I want to grow up, even as Boo does.

Boy...can i remember those days as a mother?!!! They still revisit me on an occasional basis, but we're finally to the point of reasoning with our kids.

Hang in there, mom! You're doing a great job.


Anonymous said...

Hi, boy, it's been forever since I have visited your site! I have some catching up!! Wanted to let you know we are getting close. Hope to move the first week in February! I can't wait!
Love, Leigharev

Jill said...

Thanks for the words - I can relate with a to be 2 and 6 year old and new 4 year old in the house. But was especially touched with the comparison you made at the end,how true!!

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