I manage to overlook many things in my life now. God has worked on my once famous temper and taught me to let more things slide. However, when insults or unfair treatment are directed at my children, my blood still boils.
I fathom what it took for a beaten, bloodied, rejected Jesus to utter the words, "God forgive them for they know not what they do."
As I sat on the bleachers one day, my heart ached as I saw a hurt, aggravated look on my son's face while he sat on the bench. I prayed for the coach to put him in the game; I wrung my hands; I twisted my hair, and fume began to come out of my ears. I knew I needed my own "come to Jesus" meeting, so I abruptly left the stands and walked along the court to the gym door hoping to calm myself down in the cold night air. Barely outside the door, I exclaimed, "God, do You know what they are doing to my son?"
And then it hit me.
Here I stood, an imperfect mother infuriated about her imperfect son's treatment over a game. My prayerful arguments about "how hard he has worked, how good he plays, and how he deserves more playing time" seemed so insignificant when my words rang back to me as if from God Himself, "Do you know what they did to MY Son?" How did that feel to God the Father?
I cannot imagine what it must have been like for the all-powerful God to watch us so cruelly reject His Son. Jesus had done so much more than try hard. They had seen Him walk miles of dusty roads to heal the sick, feed the thousands, and raise the dead. Yet, they discounted all Jesus had done for them, rejecting Him and His love for them and crying for a murderer to be spared in His place. They spat upon Him, ridiculed Him, and beat Him.
What if that had been my son?
What if it had been yours?
Yet, instead of wiping us all off the planet, God so loved us that He was pleased to give His Son for us. All the punishment we deserve was heaped upon God's one and only Son. The mama bear in me cannot wrap my mind around that, nor can I fathom what it took for a beaten, bloodied, rejected Jesus to utter the words, "God forgive them for they know not what they do."
I wonder when God gives us children and lets us so deeply feel their heartache if He is giving us just a glimpse of how much it cost Him to send His Son.
I wonder when God gives us children and lets us so deeply feel their heartache if He is giving us just a glimpse of how much it cost Him to send His Son. Perhaps He allows our children to suffer unfair treatment so we might teach them more about what our Savior endured and how much He loves them. Perhaps God wants His children to be less like a mama bear and more like Himself—loving the unlovely, not returning evil for evil, exhibiting patience and grace. Maybe it is especially in hard circumstances that the world can see something different in those of us who call ourselves Christians. Maybe it's then that they will see Jesus.
How can you teach your children about Jesus through their own heartaches?
He is despised and rejected by men, a Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.
Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted.
But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed.