One of my best of friends wrote this and it fits well with my theme of From Blanket to Tango, so I asked her if I could share it. Enjoy! -Tanya
My thirteen-year-old son had finally crossed the line. He had done IT and I had had IT! I could not wait for him to leave for school so I could implement my plan of discipline.
As soon as he left, I told God and my husband, “That is it! I am taking everything out of his room. He does not deserve or appreciate any of the luxuries he is afforded. All I ask is that he obeys the rules and does what is expected of him at school and at home.
If he wants to be a rebel, then he would have to do it with nothing. I will take his jam box, his video games, his paint ball guns, his TV, his furniture, etc., etc., etc. I am only going to give him a mattress on the floor and a blanket. He can earn everything else back by towing the line around here!”
After my son left for school, as I pondered my plan of removing everything from his room, the Holy Spirit interrupted me. He told me I would be removing all the furniture, but it would be to paint my son’s room.
WHAT! I am not giving him another thing, especially another chance AND paint his room. The Holy Spirit continued, “You will paint his room his favorite color and you will have it done when he gets home from school”.
As I began painting his room that morning, the Lord began to remind me that love covers a multitude of sin and that love holds no record of wrong. He whispered to me how He wanted me to reach out beyond justice to mercy because mercy truly triumphs over evil.
He assured me He was at work in my son’s heart to complete what He had begun. He also reminded me it is goodness that brings us to repentance and of how I did not choose obedience to Him out of fear or control but out of love. Love came because I saw how much He loved me first, when I did not deserve it and how much He gave to me in the midst of my mess.
I am certain my son dreaded coming home from school. He knew how mad and disappointed I was with him and he would have to face the wrath of his mom. When he walked in and found that his room painted camouflage green and that he could still enjoy all the luxuries of his life, he did not say a word. I suspected that he thought he was at the wrong house.
I wish I could tell you he fell to his knees and cried out “what must I do to be saved”, but he didn’t. He hardly responded at all. I still don’t know the fullness of what the Lord did in his heart that day. I do know that a memorial stone was laid, something that he will look back to and know God’s love and mercy is real.
I know that my son saw God’s love demonstrated to him in a practical way. As I went to bed exhausted, a part of me died that day. The part of me that had rights and demanded justice, the part of me that wasn’t like God at all.
I was flooded with the reality of how many times the Lord has reached out beyond justice to mercy for me. How many times He did not give me what I deserved. How many times had He painted my room.
Did any memories pop up as you read this article? Have there been times that you wished you had stopped to listen to the Holy Spirit before disciplining someone you love? Well, it’s never too late to ask for forgiveness, and receive it as well.
Painting by Henry Conner