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~ Harsh Words ~

I ran into a stranger as he passed by. “Oh excuse me please” was my reply. He said, “Please excuse me too; I wasn’t watching for you.” We were very polite, this stranger and I. We went on our way and we said good-bye.

But at home a different story is told, how we treat our loved ones, young and old.

Later that day, cooking the evening meal, my son stood beside me very still. When I turned, I nearly knocked him down. “Move out of the way,” I said with a frown. He walked away, his little heart broken. I didn’t realize how harshly I’d spoken.

While I lay awake in bed, God’s still small voice came to me and said, “While dealing with a stranger, common courtesy you use, but the children you love, you seem to abuse. Go look on the kitchen floor, you’ll find some flowers there by the door.” “Those are the flowers he brought for you. He picked them himself; pink yellow and blue. He stood very quietly not to spoil the surprise, and you never saw the tears that filled his little eyes.”
By this time, I felt very small, and now my tears began to fall. I quietly went and knelt by his bed; “Wake up, little one, wake up,” I said. “Are these the flowers you picked for me?” He smiled, “I found ’em out by the tree.” “I picked ’em because they’re pretty like you. I knew you’d like ’em, especially the blue.” I said, “Son, I’m very sorry for the way I acted today; I shouldn’t have yelled at you that way.” He said, “Oh, Mom, that’s okay. I love you anyway. I said, “Son, I love you too, and I do like the flowers, especially the blue.”

Author unknown

“Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands”. Proverbs 14:1
It is a strange sounding proverb, but when you understand it’s meaning, it speaks volumes to us.
Have you ever heard a mother or father say ” do as I say, don’t do as I do” ? Talk about a strange thing to say! If you as a parent think your child, at any age doesn’t grasp the hypocrisy in that statement, you are doomed to fail from the start.
The wisdom of knowing that your children see more than you know, and are taught more by your example than what you SAY to them is paramount. You can do more damage to a child by living a lie, and not owning up to things than you might think. Herein lies the importance of getting past the ‘past’ , and making a step towards identifying the ‘what and why’ of your own attitudes, and behaviors. They are rooted in your upbringing, situations, traumas, etc. but they need to be put where they belong… In the past! Yes, there will always be remnants, or scars, but a productive, happy life can be enjoyed by you and your loved ones, I assure you. Is it easy? Not always, for some it is, but we all have different experiences. One of the main things I must say is a valuable thing I learned through it all, is that forgiveness is the most important component.
I recently saw a little quote that read: “If you harbor bitterness, happiness will dock elsewhere”. Hebrews 12 says that bitterness “defiles many” . Unforgiveness towards a toxic parent(s) will cause bitterness to take root in the heart, defiling the home environment. If you have experienced a tragic childhood, harbor bitterness towards parents, and want to go on this journey towards a new life of healing, and positive parenting, take time to identify those things, first ask for forgiveness for the bitterness, and help to forgive, and an opportunity to reconcile if possible. We will spend many more days looking at many issues, but this is the first step. Now go, get quiet with God.

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