I live in extremes. This morning I was hit, kicked, spat upon, peed upon, yelled at, and my clothes were ripped and stained. This afternoon I have been told that I am beautiful, the best mommy ever, and I have been hugged and kissed repeatedly. I've also had to break up very few fights.
It's not easy living like this. There really isn't much of a middle road with my kids (especially Caleb). He is either a complete angel or a child with a rage that I can't bear to see. It is an emotional roller coaster that really takes its toll.
Our third hour lesson this week at church was all about teaching children. I really enjoyed it and came away feeling that even though I don't think what we're trying to accomplish with the kids fall on deaf ears, I need to keep at it. Here are some of the quotes used in the lesson (Marion G. Romney, “Let Us Set in Order Our Own Houses,” Ensign, Jan 1985):
"Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it." (Prov. 22:6.)
This counsel is prompted by the conviction that training our children is the best antidote to the materialism, irreverent secularism, declining morality, adult and juvenile delinquency, increasing crime, and general disregard for the laws of God and the dignity of man that so plague our present world.
No wise Latter-day Saint parent, with an understanding of the power of prayer and the irreligious trend of our society, will fail to train his or her children to pray. No person has a stronger weapon against the power of evil than he who with unbroken regularity goes night and morning on bended knee before our Heavenly Father in sincere and humble secret prayer.
Furthermore, I hope that parents do not underestimate the power of their own daily prayers in behalf of their children. It was the prayers of Alma in behalf of his wayward son and his son’s companions which helped bring them to repentance.
I came away from church feeling uplifted and more motivated. I consider this afternoon one of those tender mercies that I can put away in my mind and remember it the next time I'm in the midst of mortal combat with my kids.