Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Doing Hard Things

Last week, I was getting Abigail some breakfast. Or rather, she was getting her breakfast and I was butting in. Or something like that. I had poured her bowl of cereal, and then she said, "I want to pour on the milk."

Pause. I have a confession to make. I do way too much for Abigail. Not because she wants me to or asks me to, but because it is easier for me. I know things are less likely to get spilled. I know it will happen a lot faster. I know shampoo will be rinsed out better, hair will be brushed smoother, an entire cupful of chocolate syrup will not be dumped into the milk. It just makes my life easier, even though it may not be teaching her all of the independence she should have at age five.

That being said, I don't know if I did it consciously or not, but I went ahead and poured the milk on the cereal. I know I heard her say it, but I just did it anyway.

She said, "MOMMY! I JUST said I wanted to pour the milk!!"

"I know. I don't know why I poured it. I'm sorry."

"You need to let me learn to pour it. I'm learning to do hard things."

I think that sentence may be one of the most profound things that she has said. I said, "Where did you hear that....'doing hard things'.....school?"

Thoughtfully, slowly, she said, "Nooo....I just.....need to learn to do hard things."

Yesterday I had wonderful lunch with my pastor's wife from my growing up years, Barb. I was sharing about a year's worth of catching up with her, the amount of time that had lapsed since our last visit. I was soaking up her experience as a pastor's wife of 40-plus years, and thinking about all that I have to learn still.

I shared the story of what Abigail had said and we had a good laugh. At the same time we both said, "Don't we all need to learn to do the hard things?"

Hopefully I can be better at letting go with Abigail, at letting her figure out how to do things independently. At letting her do the things that are hard to her, even though they are easier to me. What a picture of our own walks in life, in our relationship with Jesus! There are so many things He could do for us, but where would the lesson be? How would we be stronger or better or more mature if our Lord did it for us? Thank you, Lord, for the hard things!


amypfan said...

I love this! Isn't it amazing how wise our little ones are and how much we can learn from them? I'm constantly amazed!

Lindsay said...

Duuuude. (That's about all I can say.) Yes and amen on so many levels.