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a permanent mark

September 20, 2009

one of the hardest things about parenting is disciplining. no, it isnt hard to snap at your child. to send them to their room. to take away their favorite toy. thats easy. not always effective or even necessary tho.

but to discipline. to train. to know when those opportunities are and to do them correctly. thats so hard.

there have been several nights i have wept as ive fallen asleep, praying i handled myself and the kiddos the right way.

and sometimes…i make huge mistakes. and sometimes, my kids do. but we have to extend grace and mercy. if that doesnt exist in our home then we are setting ourselves up for disaster.

i know that when i choose to withhold grace or mercy from anyone i am displaying to them that my love is conditional. and that has the potential to shatter ones heart and spirit. ive been on that receiving end before and it is devastating.

how quickly we can hurt one another if we do not first consider our words, our motives our approach. whether youre a parent or a friend, a daughter, son, mom or dad… our actions leave a mark, a permanent mark on others. good or bad. a lasting effect to stay with that person forever.

thats a heavy thought. but one i need reminding of as i set out to love God, love people.

22 Comments leave one →
  1. September 20, 2009 10:52 pm

    I keep looking at Dylan right now thinking “gosh, it was SO EASY when he was a baby….” and I remember that I used to think when he was a baby “this is so hard! I can’t wait until he’s bigger and it’s easier.”

    Truth is, it’s never easy when you’re living in it. I feel such a huge responsibility to make sure I don’t screw them up šŸ˜† and that I teach them well…. and I know I fail more days than I succeed. My prayer is always that God will shield them when I’m lacking and make it right…. that even though I don’t always handle myself well, that God can turn around any situation. I just hope that at the end of this parenting road, I did well.

    • September 22, 2009 8:16 am

      girl, ipray the same thing all the time!! and you know i think you are a fabulous mama! iw as just telling mark and cathi so last night šŸ˜‰

      • September 22, 2009 10:59 pm

        what? I made it into a Stodge conversation??? šŸ˜‰ Haha! Well thank you m’dear. šŸ˜³ That means a lot, coming from you, because I looked up to you so much when Kass and Kota were little. šŸ˜‰ Still wonder HOW you do it.

        Today I found a card from you at my bridal shower…. you talked about how you knew that if Kass grew up to be even half of what you thought of me, you would have considered your job well done…. and I can tell you that she surpassed me YEARS ago, so you’re doing FANTASTIC! Also, in the card, Kass wrote “I’m so exicted for your wedding. I love you.” and she drew the cutest little heart face with an arrow through him, and his tongue sticking out. haha! šŸ˜‰ ahhhh….

  2. September 20, 2009 11:01 pm

    GREAT POST, Tammit!!!

    A really great reminder for me actually. Proactive parenting is good… and to watch my tongue. That’s good too… but much more difficult šŸ˜¦

    Working on it.

    • September 22, 2009 8:17 am

      my tongue gets me in too much trouble at times. less now than in the past, but still more than enough. but i probably struggle more with patience and being reactionary. not a good characteristic of mine šŸ˜•

      love ya, ninjetta.

      • September 22, 2009 11:01 pm

        okay, the fact that you called her ninjetta makes me want to come clean with this: everytime I use my “Asian Honey Mustard Dressing” from Tastefully Simple, I call it my “Jenni Clayville Honey Mustard Dressing” (in my head) and I giggle. šŸ˜³ Don’t hate me. šŸ˜†

  3. September 21, 2009 2:09 am

    this makes me thing of the whole idea of parental responsibility…like jenni said, scary, but necessary. anyway, i’ve heard that responsibility shouldn’t be looked at begrudgingly but rather as the “ability to respond”. I have no idea what it’s like to be a momma…but i have some killer role models and future babysitters šŸ˜‰

    • September 22, 2009 8:18 am

      i heart you.

      i love “ability to respond”! i totally dig making those little switches in the way we think that could change our whole perspective on things.

      youre good to have a around. literally!!!


  4. Heidi permalink
    September 21, 2009 5:32 am

    With my son not following the Lord right now, Sometimes I wonder if my lack of or too much discipline allowed my 16 year old to walk away. Every morning, Every I pray over his clothes asking God to make a point of allowing Elij to see Him and maybe his heart will turn.

    Last night I picked up my son from a very dark park, common to the “inspiration point scene” and he called me on my cell and said “mom I need you now” Of course I jumped in my car and drove the 15 minutes and picked him up.

    When he got in my car. He was crying, I knew something was up, but I wasn’t ready for this. Elij said he was walking up to the park with a friend and they were just talking and they had past a church on the hill. I guess the worship could be heard from the street, and they were playing a song “Open your eyes to my heart” (I think I have that right) and that song stuck in his head.

    As they reach the park, the girl who is non-saved started to act agressivly in a sexual way, and my son said “STOP” and he called me.

    He told me later that song popped in his head just when she got real close and he knew what he was about to do was wrong. He had remembered that song and remembered our talks. He said he remember that I told him it was okay to say no.

    It left a permanent mark.


    • September 21, 2009 6:39 am


    • September 21, 2009 9:05 am

      thanks for this Heidi, we need to swap “teen boy stories” sometime… very similar. =)

    • September 22, 2009 8:20 am

      im proud of elij! and YOU!!! your commitment to him in prayer is so admirable and obviously bearing fruit. thank you, God!

      i love how you parent!

  5. September 21, 2009 6:54 am

    For the 2 year old boy in the house… Mercy is short (More Discipline) and Grace is shown in love and provision… šŸ˜‰

    For the 9 year old girl… Mercy is balanced with Grace and love.

    Each takes training, and it does hurt to punish them

    The 2 year old doesn’t understand the explanations. Legalism is Daddy and Mommy’s discipline…

    As the child grows legalism fades…

    The 9 year old needs more explaining of why we discipline, and more and more Grace is extended…

    But they are mine tell they are 18, and as Bill Cosby says “I brought them into the world, I can take them out” šŸ˜‰

    • September 22, 2009 8:22 am

      carl – we were just watching old cosby videos of his stand up routines on parenting! classic!!!

      yes, we need to address each child differently, thats for sure. there are several things that work great for kota that would never fly with kass. but usually, you dont find out those things until you try’em out on the kids šŸ˜Æ

  6. September 21, 2009 7:08 am

    Tam: Wow. I remember crying at night too, but I look at them now with their wonderful lives, and beautiful wives and just thank God that He is so faithful. There was a point in each of their lives when I went to them (as adults) and asked them to forgive me for some things. Both of them had puzzled looks, hadn’t even remembered. I think it is God’s mercy on us as parents to block some brain cells… I can’t wait to see what the Lord will do with your two kiddos, amazing things coming up. šŸ™‚

    One thing I love about you is your unconditional love. You know I don’t toot horns, but you have shown me what that is. You have roll modeled that for me, with me. i think something that is even harder for me than conditional love (maybe cause I’m used to that one?) is being held to being a certain way when there has been change. it takes time I know when there has been pain and hurtful things said and done, but not giving a person the chance to change, or not believing someone can change by God’s grace is a lesson I’ve learned as well, and not how I choose to treat others. Letting offenses go that are older than a day has been a huge lesson for me, and very effective for God’s kingdom. You see the good in me and focus on that, knowing that the rest will fall away and be purged from my life as God is faithful to complete the good work He has begun in me. Just wanted to thank you for that.

    • Heidi permalink
      September 21, 2009 7:50 am

      I so agree with your last paragraph so true

    • September 22, 2009 8:23 am

      i love you, deb. and im blessed to call you friend. i truly am!

  7. September 21, 2009 7:46 am

    I am just now starting a relationship with my parents at the age of twenty four. Vulnerability is something I can show to anybody else but fear showing to them. There are things that happened in my life that they never knew about and are now discovering as I’ve been going through therapy.

    I have this gnawing ability to feel responsible for making my parents feel like excellent parents-which they are- and never to make them feel like they made a mistake.

    But I know my Mom cries probably more than she has in a while. She grieves over things in my life, struggles, past and current. I know she grieves over the mistakes her and my Dad made. And that’s hard for me to accept, and not feel responsible for, figuring if I’d have just kept my mouth shut, they would’ve never known there was anything wrong, and therefore no fault was theirs.

    I was meeting with my mentor the other day and she told me incredible nuggets of truth about parenting, and it terrified me. My mistakes will effect my children someday (I hope I get married.)–and the ripple effect of sin has never made so much sense than it does right now.

    I like when you talk about the distinct responsibility and difficulty of parenting. Thank you for giving me insight into ways my parents think.

    • September 22, 2009 8:28 am

      would you consider yourself to be a “people pleaser”?

      and you know, honestly, i think thinking about being a parent is actually more scary than actually being a parent. really.

      i remember having talks with other mothers, when all our kids were young, and we would just marvel at how certain things just came naturally. how we’d find ourselves doing, saying, reacting in ways that seemed to be out of our character. its true that a motherly instinct takes over.

      baggage is always there. we all have it. its rare that that is dealt with in its entirety before kiddos come along. often times, more baggage creeps up after you have kids, as it can spark memories. just, pray-pray-pray! surround yourself with people you trust and who are wise.

      it takes a village to raise a child. i truly believe that.

      • September 22, 2009 8:21 pm

        People Pleaser? Oh yes. But I am working on it!
        Therapy and an understanding that I cannot relinquish control I seem to take over and over (and over) from God helps me to change.

        Thanks for the reply.

        • September 22, 2009 10:19 pm

          you know what i love about your comments…its that you see there needs to be change. youre aware of the ripple effects. thats half the battle really.

          so keep doing what youre doing. i bet youre gonna be a phenomenal mama some day, girl!

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