convicted by my own words…

March 19, 2010

just the other day, gabrielle had a little friend over for a playdate.  they were sitting at the table, giggling back and forth over macaroni and cheese when the friend spilled her milk… all over the table.  all over the floor.  into the paperwork.  she looked at me with some big, half sorry, half sad eyes.  she quickly said sorry and started moving stuff out of the way.  I said it was okay.  grabbed a dish towel and started heading for the table.  I didn’t holler at her or tell her ‘that’s what happens when you are goofing around’ in a less than kind voice.  we cleaned it up and got some new milk.  no harm done.

it was during the process of wiping up the milk, as I was on my hands and knees under the table that I realized I was guilty of something that I often tell my children not to do.  I wasn’t guilty in this particular instance, but in previous (and fearfully future) incidents.  I was nicer  to this little girl who I am just getting to know than I would have been to my very own sweet and much-loved daughter… flesh of my flesh, a girl after my own heart.  I probably would have snapped at her and made her feel guilty.  it was right there under the table that I heard my own words echoing in my mind… “you can’t be ‘so nice’ to the outside world and then come home and be mean and crabby to your family, the ones who love you most.”  often said to a child who has just been playing  nicely outside with friends and then comes in and is crabby with a sibling.  I felt bad.  I had a glaring example of my own words right in front of me and I  was the model of behavior that I didn’t want.

a great lesson…  in humility and love.  in ‘practice what you preach’.  in ‘you got a ways to go my beloved’.

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