Sunday, February 21, 2010

You've got to pick your battles

I remember hearing the same piece of advice from parents with kids of all ages: "You've got to pick your battles". I couldn't agree more. As Elijah continues to grow into an individual with wants and opinions, I have been reminding myself of this advice more and more. There are some things that I don't love that Eli choses to do, but if it's not hurting him or anyone else, I just let it happen. Eating dirt/bugs, drumming on objects throughout the house, jumping on our bed and playing with money are just a few.

Anyone who has been around Elijah and I more than a few days might say that I can be strict. I have certain rules about things that are not to be broken for any reason or he gets a spank: standing in the bath tub, biting, or throwing fits to get what he wants. Sometimes the mention of a spank is enough to change his heart and that is great. We only use spanking as a last resort and it has worked really well for us.

Elijah is an incredibly obedient boy. Even when obeying is hard and goes against what he wants, he usually is able to make himself do what is right. Sometimes, he does fuss about it a bit but then eventually obeys. The times when he flat out says no or throws a fit is when we both know, this is possibly a spank situation.

Yesterday, Eli and I were drawing but then had to stop so we could get ready to go out. I was getting dressed in my bedroom and Eli was lingering by his drawing table. He came to see me with a green color pencil in his hand and I quickly reminded him to go put it back. We are not allowed to walk around the house with crayons, pen and color pencils. They stay at the drawing table. Well, Eli wasn't too excited about the idea of leaving his pencil at the table, but eventually, he obeyed. This is what he did:

The second video shows Eli returning from his drawing table having obeyed completely. I was so proud of him for doing the right thing even though it was hard. Seconds after coming back to me, he gets all upset again. Maybe he missed his pencil, I don't know. It was hilarious though and I really couldn't keep a straight face. Watch how quickly he gets upset and then how quickly his feelings change. He runs out of the room to go draw again.

Who knows what was really going on in his little brain. I could see him struggling through the entire thing. It was eye opening for me, because I know that I am just like that when it comes to obeying God and listening to His calling. I just pray that I will be able to guide Elijah through difficult situations and help him to obey and do the right thing. I don't want him to be a robot and try to do everything right all the time. I want him to actually struggle and wrestle with the difficulties of obeying and letting go of his desires. I want to give him the skills. It's just convicting because his behavior often reminds me of how far I have yet to go. Thankfully I have Dan to help me in this!


  1. wow! i am so impressed with how well he obeyed...someday you will have to teach me your secrets!

  2. HUH-larious!!!!!!! He's SO dramatic; reminds me of someone...
    I mean YOU :). Of course, I also mean me, and Ezra is ridiculous too. My favorite is when Ez fake cries to get hugs as if ANY child of mine would ever need to bend over backwards to get hugs. Usually, he's telling me to stop hugging him so much, but every now and then he just likes all the drama of having a moment and needing me to hug him through it.
    And, yes, good obeying :)