Monday, February 25, 2008


A couple of weeks ago, I felt like all I was doing all day everyday was "correcting" my children. As much as I hate to admit it, many of my sentences would begin with "for the 100th time...could you please do this or that (or don't do this or that)..." By the end of the day, we were all frustrated. John would come home and say "do you need to go for a jog?" This is my litmus test that I am not having a very good attitude! I know I am exceptionally bad when he adds "without the dogs?"!! On these jogs, I would tell the Lord that I don't want to be this way - I want to be free to enjoy my kids, with correction just being part of the picture.

He brought to my mind the image of gardening...correcting is sorting of like pulling the weeds, or pruning the plants. If that is all that I do, my "garden" will not flourish. Gardens also need water and sunlight to grow - they need love, tender care, and nurturing to flourish. I was also reminded that weeding and pruning are necessary elements, but they are not the main needs for a garden. Without water and sunlight, nothing will have a chance to grow.

This kind of "gardening" can be applied to our children, workplace, relationship with others, etc. May we allow Jesus to shine through us to be a drink of water for a thirsty soul or a ray of sunshine for someone who needs hope. I also need to be more careful when and where I pull the weeds and how I prune.

Thanks for tuning in...


  1. Oh Shirley, I can so totally relate to your frustrations.

    As I was reading "One Minute of Praise" yesterday, I dropped to my knees praising God for second chances in this same area. And with the Beth M study, I was convicted to allow Jesus into my job of housewife. I never really thought about Him knowing how to do my job better, and honestly, sometimes I never asked for His help - but yesterday I did. And today, we had an awesome day!

    I love a good word picture and gardening is such a great way to remember it! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Shirley, I am very knew to this blogging...but have been wanting to connect with you and hope this works. I too, could relate to your gardening parable...thanks for sharing. We learn from each others insights. Learning to love and appreciate children is a challenge, but a blesssing. An insight that the Holy Spirit has been showing me is that little verse that says "Fathers (and I'm sure mothers are included) do not exasperate your children..." never really knew exactly what God I think I'm getting a clearer picture as it's exactly what you are talking about...don't set the standard too high...remember they are learning... and keep in mind how long it has taken you to learn some things...

    It was so nice to see your pictures and hear from you. I need to get started blogging. It is a summer goal.

    Love and Prayers,

    Tanya Shuke

  3. So powerful!! Well said!! I needed this! My kids are usually great buddies and the last few days I feel like if I am not shouting they are crying! It is a vicious cycle of strife! This is not our normal world and I feel so icky! It is great to think about the water and light aspect. I feel like I do a decent job (b/c of God alone) at watering my kids and leading them in the way they should go. It is when I get in this cycle of strife with them that I feel like the biggest failure ever!! Thankfully this happens rarely but I don't want to give room to strife even for a second. It seems the minute strife sneaks in I can't seem to get back on the leading side. It takes a few days to regroup and get on the right journey! Thanks for the fresh perspective! I am thankful for your jog! It encouraged me!

    (Tanya - your exasperation comment is great! I never looked at it from that perspective. I always looked at it as don't provoke them but your comment is dead on too! thanks for sharing!)



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