Spiritual Lessons From a Two-Year-Old
In 2016 I gave birth to a sweet little boy named Tristan. Although he isn’t always very sweet, especially now since he’s reached the terrible twos, I have learned so much about my relationship with God just by being his mom every day.
Let me explain.
Tristan does many things that frustrate me on a daily basis. He disobeys me almost every time I say no. He tests and tries my patience, often whining when he doesn’t get what he wants. The tantrums are no joke. He has a hard time communicating what he needs so he will cry, kick and scream until I figure it out. It’s in these times that I think, “If he just told me what he wanted I would be more than happy to give it to him” and, “If he just stood still while I changed his diaper this could go a lot faster for him and for me!”. Sometimes I think he wants to stay in his dirty diaper just to avoid being uncomfortable. (But then again how is being in a dirty diaper comfortable???)
I have to be on the lookout for danger constantly. My little boy doesn’t understand that if he goes outside without me, or goes anywhere without me, then he could be hit by a car or snatched up by some stranger. God forbid! There are ways to the world that he has yet to discover, and it is my job both to protect and to provide for him. In the winter it’s cold, so I make sure he has warm clothes. In the summer it can be excruciatingly hot so I make sure he has loose fitting clothes, stays hydrated and stays in the air conditioning. My mind is constantly focused on his safety and provision.
Maybe you see where I’m going with this, but let me give you another example.
I often battle my son when it comes time to get him into his car seat. His developing brain doesn’t realize that I’m trying to prepare him for a long car ride, and by being strapped into a properly installed car seat is the only way to get him to our destination as safely as possible. I wouldn’t dream of letting him win the fight and allowing him to crawl all over the car as we drive 65 plus miles an hour on a highway filled with other speed demons.
As a parent, I see things that Tristan does not. I see dangers that he does not. I’ve experienced life in a way that he hasn’t yet. I’m equipped with more wisdom and knowledge than he is.
The same goes with God in our relationship to you and I.
God is my parent. He is my Heavenly Father, and He knows vastly more than I could ever imagine or fathom. But as His child I often complain, whine, kick, and scream when I don’t get what I want. I yell, “Why!?!” when He says, “No” or “Wait”. I yell, “No!” when He asks me to obey Him. I refuse to trust and obey simply because I am foolish and childish. Sometimes it’s simply because I do not know. Maybe I don’t know His word, or I don’t know or believe that He is good and that He always has my best at heart. In a sense I’d rather stay in my proverbial “dirty diaper” than take a chance at being uncomfortable or see real breakthrough in my life.
But there’s hope. Let’s go back to my relationship with Tristan for a second.
I love my son. There is nothing in the world that could change my feelings for him. I do not sit and think of every one of his sins day in and day out. After a good night’s sleep I barely remember what he did the previous day that frustrated me! This is what I remember and dwell on often. I dwell on how cute he is when he runs. How he sweetly says, “Ok” after everything I ask him. He has the sweetest smile and the brightest blue eyes. I love how he tries on his Daddy’s shoes and walks around the house so proud. One day he will fill those shoes and these years of toddling will be over. Are there days when I want to throw my hands up and run away because he’s being so bad? YES! But I don’t. I continue in my relationship with him because my love for him is greater than my frustration. My desire to protect and provide for him is greater than my temporary anger.
So how does this apply to you and I?
So if I, a mere human being, can show some patience and mercy towards a two-year-old when he’s sinning against me, how much more mercy and grace can God give to me!? It’s a wonderful and humbling thought. Now this doesn’t mean that sin is OK, but it provides comfort in that when I’m not living righteously on any given day God doesn’t hold it against me. I can neither earn my salvation nor remove it. It is my faith in Jesus that secures my seat in Heaven. Do I deserve it? No. Should I go on sinning? No. But it makes me want to live rightly because I’m grateful. I’m grateful that I have a High Priest who does understand, being tempted as I am every day yet He was without sin. He has great compassion and love for you and I.
I hope this encourages you today. If it did, let me know in the comments section below.
- Dez xoxo