Tee is at the age where his actions can be discussed, where there are consequences for acts of defiance and a call for repentance is asked of him. Often, after he’s been disciplined for clear cut defiance and disobedience, but before he has calmed down for our talk about repentance, I’ll whisper in his ear as I’m hugging him, “I love you too much to watch you walk the path to hell”. Sound too harsh? I guess there is a reason I don’t wait till he is quiet and really listening when I say those words right now. But one day, I will. I pray I never give up an opportunity to pluck him from the path of wrath; it’s a rescue mission of massive importance.
We had a typical discipline issue today–one that we have most days. I caught him in the act; it was obvious, even to him. I picked him up and prepared for the routine to repentance. I didn’t get very far. For some reason, I instead sat with him in the middle of the dining room floor. He was crying as I talked with him about confessing his sin, asking for Jesus’ forgiveness and then Catcher’s forgiveness. It was clear he wanted a way out so badly–wanted to be free, wanted to not “feel this way”. It was like “forgiveness” and “sin” were hot words to him and he sobbed so much harder. He deserved every ounce of punishment he reaped. I withheld and told him about grace this afternoon. And then, when we had prolonged eye contact, I began to tell him in the most simple words how sad his sin made me. How sad it made Daddy. How sad it made Jesus. Tee began to sob again. And I realized…I was pleading for his heart…and crying with him.
How truly sad I am at his sin; deep, heartbreaking, life-shattering sad. It’s a penetrating sadness that pricked my heart at that moment–and then I thought about my own sin, my own lack of repentance, how deep the Lord’s sadness must be looking at my own disobedience. I wanted a way out as well! We sat on the dining room floor and cried together…then, as the mommy, I got my act together and remembered I knew the way out and had to share it with my precious son…repent.
Tee did repent and as he tearfully apologized and kissed Catcher (who was thrilled by-the-way to tackle him with kisses back!) I saw the relief in his face. He grabbed a ball and called Catcher to follow him as they went to play their next game…laughing and free.
I am so thankful I can share with my sons the real way out. Oh my, it’s just…everything.