I think I have learned something new about myself, and it is something that I am not especially proud of. I am a "barker". You know how your mom use to get you up in the morning and begin barking orders at you all while telling you how many minutes you had to get something accomplished?

I do that. I bark.

"GET UP! Let's go! We have twenty minutes to get dressed and have breakfast! After that we need teeth brushed, hair combed and out the door! Fourty minutes total! Let's GO!"

I mean I remember, when I got older, saying, "MOM! I hear you! I am moving! I just woke up for Pete's sake! Cut me some slack! I am moving, I am moving! AND I DON'T WANT TO KNOW HOW MUCH TIME I HAVE!" Ooohhh! I hated it!

I am my mother. The barker.

This morning, as my husband is loading my daughter into the car, and as I am telling Caroline (for the billionth time) "Hurry, honey! You are going to be late! Help daddy!" My husband looks at me and just shakes his head. Almost like he was saying FOR her, "Just shut up! She is moving! Cut her some slack. QUIT BARKING!"

That's when it hit me. I AM my mother.

There are many characteristics about my mom that I value. I love that she is funny and outgoing. I love that she is spontaneous and (for the most part) happy. I love that she is still kind of sassy and she is in her 60's. I love how she loves our family with full abandon and that she is so willing to help any of us with anything that we need.

I have to admit though, that there are times that I wish I weren't so much like her. I look like her and I obviously bark like her!

When I think about my Heavenly Father I realize that He is NOT a barker. He does not sit up in heaven looking down at all of my sluggish ways yelling, "Either get up and come with Me or I will strike you with a lightning bolt in twenty minutes!" (I wonder if He is tempted!?)

He is so patient with me. He is so... EVERYTHING good ...with me! There is not one characteristic of my Heavenly Father that I didn't wish I had! SO if the Lord God of the universe can be patient with ME then how come it is so hard for me to be patient with others?

Look in your Bible at Ephesians 4:1-3.
Notice how the words "humble," "gentle," "love," "unity," and "peace," are all used to describe how Paul was instructing the church to relate to one another.

I really do not want Caroline to grow up barking! The Lord was so creative as He told stories that the people could relate to about fishermen, tax collectors and servants. He used these people and their life examples to point people to His principles and commands without pointing fingers and barking them at those He loved. I think I need to be more creative in how I motivate my girl. While those life lessons that Jesus taught might be a little over her head right now, I can certainly think of other ways to get her going than to bark! His example of teaching others with love and patience is the example that I need to see and live out in my home.

The Lord has a lesson for me at every turn! Every experience I have is an opportunity to learn something new about myself and about my Savior. The contrast between the two of us is SO sharp!!

Jesus, help me to close the gap! I need to draw closer to You so that my life is more blended with You and who You call me to be. Help the stark contrasts to fade into softer lines so that You shine through brighter than I.

Todays lesson (SO FAR!) is "Beware of Mom! She BARKS! Run for Safety! The Savior awaits!"

Oh, I have some learning to do!


Nicki said…
Girl, I was laughing so hard as I read this...ugh, that is so me, but only on the mornings I have to drive Taylor to school....the other mornings, I'm a tip toer to not wake the other two up so I can have some PEACE for a few minutes!! But the other mornings, it's "LET'S GO!!!" "NOW!!"

But, this was a very good way to look at our relationships with the Lord....He certianly isn't "barking" (love that term!) at us..."YOU'RE SINNING, YOU'RE WRONG, YOU'RE WAY OFF!!" It's that gentle whisper He gives me day in and day out.

Thanks for sharing your heart today! Loved it!! Have a great week!!!
Melissa said…
Praise the Lord, I am NOT the only one! Oh, it really did hit me yesterday that Caroline probably sees so little of Jesus in the mornings. I have had to apologize to her for yelling! Oh, it is hard, but so important that they see Godly expectations with love. HOW!?!? I don't know, but I am sure if I try He will help me!
Amy E. said…
Sorry for the late comment....girl, I am a barker too! Aren't we all??? One thing that the Lord convicted me of months ago was being a "barker" on Sunday mornings (which I am oh-so-guilty of!). I think it was in an issue of Parent Life that there was an article about how Sunday mornings at home should never be chaotic, how our children should associate that with the best day of the week....the day we go to church to worship. Now that's pretty difficult, with three kids and a hubby to get ready! :) But God has really helped me to prepare everything BEFORE Sunday morning, so things can be as happy and relaxed as possible while we're getting ready for church.
Now, if I can just work on the other six days! :) Love you!

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