But wait, this note said:
"Kaylee is a very pleasant, helpful, organized, respectful young lady that is kind to her peers and protective when anyone hints of bullying. I can depend on her to run errands and help her classmates. She is an all around pleasure to have in my class."
Wait...what? The little girl that I just scolded for spending 15 minutes trying to find her left basketball shoe and being grumpy to her brother as well as yelling her default "leave me alone" sentence to me when asked to change an attitude since she was 2?
This young lady? Yes, yes this lovely child... And she continues to have those same qualities. Kind, helpful, thoughtful of others and helps to meet needs. Kaylee has learned to draw on the Holy Spirit to find a reserve tank of Nice since then.
But when the note came home, I read it to Kaylee and asked her, "Why don't we see more of this kind of behavior here at home?" Well, her response could very well be the key to many family "issues" from Adam and Eve until now.
"Mommy, I try to do all those nice things you teach me...I just use it all up at school and don't have any nice left when I get home!"
Do you do that? Do you give the very best of yourself to others outside of your own home?
Do you speak gently to your neighbors kids but raise your voice to your own?
Do you smile at the waitress and say please and thank you, yet snap at your spouse or forget the "please" and "thank you"?
Do you listen patiently to co-workers and try to be a team player, while grumbling about behaviors, ideas, needs of your own family...interrupting or tuning out?
Do you need to join the 12 step group "Eye Rollers Anonymous"?
You don't have to be married to ask these questions of yourself. If you are a single person, you can still fall into this trap...giving everyone else your best and beating up on yourself, your roommate, or your family not in your home.
If your Grace Tank needs a refill...here are 4 Things You Can Do:
1) Pray for gentle answers in your home.
2) Ask for forgiveness from those you have treated harshly.
3) Show Grace to those in your home but also family outside of your home as well
(adult children, parents, siblings, in-laws).
I think, like that Second grade little girl...we might need to ask God to show us how to keep a reserve tank of Nice (Grace) on hand for the home front. Our ministry was named for just this very issue...I need to remember this more than anyone in my own home. We can start by applying scripture to our lives.
A Gentle Answer Turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.