I’m sure it has happened to nearly every parent. You watch your child struggle through a task. Once they have tried a few times, you calmly teach them a better way to accomplish the task. They listen, accept your teaching, but then turn around and continue working – and failing – in the same manner as before.
You try again, this time wording it a bit differently, hoping that they simply didn’t understand the first time. You even demonstrate the procedure. But again, they do it the same old way.
Maybe the process gets repeated multiple times in a single day. Maybe it extends over the course of weeks or months. Either way, you eventually grow frustrated. Why can’t they grasp what you are saying to them? Why will they not take your advice?
As I experienced this yet again with one of my children recently, I felt my agitation turn into conviction. The Lord teaches me many things that I receive, exclaim over, and even write about. But, all too frequently, I then turn around and neglect to apply what I have learned. I keep it all in a neat, tidy box of information tucked in a storeroom of my heart and mind. God’s intentions, however, are for me to plug each new lesson into my life, allowing it to change my behavior.
Fortunately, God is much more patient with me than I frequently am with my children. He teaches once, reinforces the lesson, and then starts again from scratch if needed. He reminds and reminds and reminds until I get it.
As I try to establish a blog plan for 2014, I am spending a lot of time looking back through journal entries from 2013. I see lessons here and there that I learned but have not been diligent to apply. It’s heartbreaking, but also exciting. Exciting because God does grant second chances. It’s not too late! I can still take those lessons and apply them to my life.
And that is exactly what I intend to do.