Today was incredibly hard. I'd list out the where and what of it, but I'll spare the details. My husband is out of town doing what he is meant to do, and that left me at home with the three littles all day yesterday and today. I figured it would be no big deal. Kurt handled them all by himself with no problem while I was gone! Yesterday went alright, save the visit to the ER, but today was a whole new game. The kids just started pushing and pushing until I was at a brittle snapping point. They, like all children, know exactly where my buttons are, how to push them, and how long. Thank God they sleep at night.
At one point today, my son Alex was in his room crying. We'd had another blow out where all three kids needed to be separated lest one stab the other with a pencil, break a CD, or save over the final level of Lego Star Wars. They just could not get along today! I had retreated to my bathroom to pull my hair out, and I heard Alex come around the corner, huffing and hiccuping from the crying.
He grabbed his hair, tipped his head to the side and said, "Mommy, I feel like God and Satan are at war inside my head."
I was knocked back by his ability to grasp this profound concept. I pulled him close to me and I assured him that God in him is so much bigger than Satan out there. And in reassuring him, I found myself comforted as well. We went to the Bible to look up some verses. I want the kids to know that most of what I say isn't just some arbitrary thing I made up. They believe fully that the Bible is the inerrant Word of God. There's something concrete in being able to show them ink on paper.
I had Alex read this passage aloud,
James 4:7 "So let God work his will in you. Yell a loud no to the Devil and watch him scamper. Say a quiet yes to God and he'll be there in no time." (The Message)
We prayed together... simply, powerfully. "God, I say yes to you. Devil I say no! In the name of Jesus, Amen." Somehow hearing those words come from the mouth of an eight year old boy, I feel that heaven and hell must have shook. The spiritual ramifications of my young son's willingness to stand in his God-given authority are beyond my comprehension.
I went on to show him Romans 7:21-25 (the pages in my Bible are all crinkly now from his tears)
"It happens so regularly that it's predictable. The moment I decide to do good, Sin is there to trip me up. I truly delight in God's commands, but it's pretty obvious that not all of me joins in that delight. Parts of me covertly rebel, and just when I least expect it, they take charge.
I've tried everything and nothing helps. I'm at the end of my rope. Is there no one who can do anything for me? Isn't that the real question?
The answer, thank God, is that Jesus Christ can and does. He acted to set things right in this life of contradictions where I want to serve God with all of my heart and mind, but am pulled away by the influence of sin to do something totally different"
It goes on to talk about a "new power in operation. The Spirit of life in Christ, like a strong wind, has magnificently cleared the air..."
We pondered this for a little while and I said, "Alex, you know, God sent Jesus so that you don't have to worry about that fight inside of you. God is so much stronger."
Alex grinned at me and started singing...
"He is stronger. He is stronger.
Sin is broken, He has saved me.
It is written, 'Christ is risen'.
Jesus you are Lord of all."
Thank you God, for speaking to me through my precious son. I needed that today. Hopefully it blesses you as well.
Here's a recording of Alex singing that little chorus. (Sorry the icon's so huge!)